It was an excellent networking opportunity, and I came away with some really good contacts and around five potential new client leads. Interest was very high in HumberLaunch's offerings so we were kept busy talking to a lot of people.
Other organizations represented included -- to name but a few -- GoDaddy, Google, Uber, Shopify, FreshBooks, Yellow Pages Group, Toronto Region Board of Trade and National Crowdfunding Association of Canada (never knew about the latter).
The one thing I took away from my interactions with the booth visitors is that people still want to make that personal connection, face to face, initially. After chatting and finding out we can potentially help each other, or just have something in common, the first thing I ask is if we can connect on LinkedIn. All agreed. (One even invited me on the spot!)
I'm one of those people who don't like to just send the default LinkedIn template message, it's so lazy and disrespectful. I usually ask in an e-mail conversation first, or follow up on Twitter to ask beforehand.
It's very east to connect these days with people you meet for a brief time, and then you are lost in a sea of business cards or follow-up sales pitches. Spending just five to 10 minutes getting to know their business, what they need and requesting the later invitation, pays dividends in my mind.
And I think that goes a long way these days.