I attended my first Business Boutique event in Nashville, Tennessee last fall, and boy was it a GREAT experience! I got to attend with as a VIP, and even got to meet the lovely Christy Wright backstage + my all-time business hero, Pat Flynn!
I’ll be attending the Nashville event again this fall as a VIP, and even more excitingly as a SPEAKER on the success panel! I’ll be sharing my business story, failures, advice and everything in between in an interview on stage with Christy. I’m beyond honored to be a part of the event in this new way.
As a second-timer, I definitely have some tips up my sleeve to share with you! And… as a bit of a celebration for this year’s event, I’m giving away a copy of Christy’s book Business Boutique, and 2 other books that have been business-changing for me! To enter the giveaway, scroll to the bottom of this post.
Now, let’s get to those tips to get the most out of your event experience!
1. Learn and practice how to explain what you do quickly and confidently.
When meeting a new face at this conference, you will almost ALWAYS be asked: “So, what do you do?” Figure out how to answer that question in 1-2 sentences and with confidence! Maybe you’re only part-time in your business or you’re coming to the conference with only a business idea in mind. If your current situation leads you to lack confidence when you describe your business before this event, you will learn to answer confidently! But, practice makes perfect. Figure out how you are going to answer that question, and get ready to talk about it around 62876 times.
2. Strike up conversations with strangers.
This conference is full of actionable speaker sessions, but it’s also a networking event. Bring your prettiest business cards and get ready to network hard! I highly recommend striking up conversations with other attendees - in line for coffee, during breaks, before sessions, at lunch, in the bathroom line, CONSTANTLY! You will get to meet amazing women who share similar interests with you and you may even meet people who will become ongoing business friends! Exchange your business card, phone number, or social media handle and be sure to stay in touch!
[ If you need to print business cards fast, I recommend using Moo.com. They have really unique printing options such as gold foil and embossing. You can use my link to get a code and save 20% on your order!]
3. Dress to match YOUR style.
There’s no real dress code at Business Boutique. You’ll see women in everything from pantsuits to jeans and a cute top. Whatever you choose to wear, dress in a way that makes you feel confident and that is true to who you are! Blazers and slacks aren’t my thing, so at Business Boutique last year you would have found me in black jeans with a cute blouse and boots.
[P.S. always bring a sweater or light jacket for inside the conference room. It gets chilly, and Nashville weather tends to be all over the place!]
4. Take plenty of notes during the sessions.
Last year, each attendee was given a Business Boutique journal to take notes in. USE IT. I still reference my notes occasionally from my 2 favorite talks last year - Donald Miller and Pat Flynn + the many website addresses I jotted down so I could follow along with all the speakers when I got home. Although the conference is short, they jam-pack information into it and you definitely will not remember it all without writing it down.
5. Post on social media throughout the event.
During last year’s event, I posted about the conference on Instagram posts and stories daily using all the Business Boutique hashtags. This allowed me to network even more with women who were also at the event! There were even a few ladies who found me on social media (thanks to the lovely power of hashtags) that I then met up with at the event! If you aren’t already using social media to its full capabilities in your business, now is a great time to start since you will have something interesting to post about!
Some great hashtags to consider using: #businessboutique #businessboutique2018 #businessboutiquenashville #bbnash #christywrightbusinessboutique
6. Park farther away from the building.
Instinct will tell you to park close to the door so that you can have a shorter walk in. But, the closer you are to the building, the harder it will be to exit when the conference ends or during the lunch break! Traffic can be rough at the end of the day. Either plan to stay in the building longer and hang out, or park close to the exit so you can leave before traffic picks up.
8. Remember to keep track of expenses and take tax deductions!
The cost of your conference tickets, mileage, plane flights, Uber rides, daily coffees, and meals are all tax deductible. Keep track of your expenses for when your tax time comes! If you want a great accounting system for small business owners to get you ready for your quarterly and yearly taxes, try QuickBooks Self Employed! It’s my go-to system!
8. Pack plenty of snacks.
If you’re a regular snacker like me, then during the session breaks you may want something light to hold you off between meals. Last year, I brought a couple of protein/snack bars that were easy to carry in my purse.
9. Be sure to experience Nashville dining while you’re here too!
When you’re not soaking up valuable business tips at the conference, definitely splurge a little to dine out at some of the best Nashville spots. Here are my top recommendations for every type of taste bud.
Five Daughters Bakery (Multiple locations; the best donuts in the world)
Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream (Multiple locations; the best ice cream in the world)
JJ’s Wine Bar (Located in Downtown Franklin, TN; an “on tap” wine bar)
L.A. Jacksons (located in the Gulch; a fabulous rooftop bar)
Tempered Cafe & Chocolate (Wine, cheese, and truffles in Germantown. What more could you want?!)
Desano’s Pizza Bakery (Located in Downtown Nashville; a “bring your own wine” fun pizza restaurant)
Burger Up (Located in 12 South; a deliciously southern burger spot)
Taco Mamacitas (Located in Edgehill Village; some of the best tacos and margaritas around!)
Urban Grub (Located in 12 South; think southern seafood and meats + a fabulous wine list!)
City House (Located in Germantown; Southern Italian fun restaurant)
10. Follow up with the women you meet.
Like I’ve been saying, you will meet so many incredible women at this event! Be sure to exchange contact information and follow up after. Last year, I met many women who were interested in my services who I emailed after the event and others who I simply followed on Instagram and wrote them to say that I enjoyed meeting them. However, you want to play it, make sure you allow these relationships to turn into something more long-term!
There you have it - 10 ways to make the most of the 2019 Business Boutique event in Nashville. Now … it’s giveaway time! Enter your email address below to enter to win Christy Wright’s book Business Boutique and 2 of my other all-time favorites - Storybrand by Donald Miller and The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferris!
Will I be seeing you at the Business Boutique conference this year? If so, say hi in the comments!