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In case you haven’t noticed, something big is happening this weekend, and the automotive industry just can’t seem to keep quiet about it.
(HINT: it’s the 2014 DrivingSales Executive Summit)
By now you’re sure to be feeling pretty down if you’re one of the industry’s few who isn’t going to be attending. It’s pretty clear that you’ll be missing out on one of the best automotive events of the year if you don’t attend. However, if you really truly can’t make it this year, have no fear. I’m here tell you how to experience DSES without so much as leaving your couch.
Mark Your Calendar
Let’s start with the most obvious of them all. You’ll miss ALL of the fun if you don’t tune in when the event is actually happening. The event begins on Sunday, October 12th and ends on Tuesday, October 14th.
All web sharing for the conference will be tagged with the official conference hashtag #DSES. Search for #DSES within your Twitter client of choice, and save it. In my experience, watching the live twitter stream of an event is even better than a live video stream. You’ll experience the event from all angles: host, speakers, vendors, and dealers. Be sure to tune in not only during the event, but before and after as well, and don’t forget to participate!
Check Out the Contests
What makes this conference so special? Access to the most innovative ideas that dealers are using to succeed in today’s market. The DSES Innovation Cup Contest and the Best Idea Contest are your fast track to these great ideas. Check out the list of finalists and keep track of the #DSES hashtag for even more insights.
Get to Know the Speakers
The speaker list for this year’s event is arguably the best one yet. Spend some time reading up on the speakers and their respective presentation topics. Take note of the people that you know, and the ones who intrigue you the most, so that you can connect with them on social networks during the event. I’ve already put together a [mostly complete] Twitter list of all of the speakers; feel free to borrow it.
Since you’re not going to be listening to an audio feed, there’s no need to take notes as you would if you were in-person at the event. Instead, craft a custom IFFFT recipe that will save the conference tweets in a way that works for you. Personally, I will be creating two recipes: 1) to log all of my #DSES tweets to Evernote and 2) to log all of my favorited tweets to Evernote. After the event, you can organize and re-work your notes based on the full experience.
Try the Buddy System
If you’re reading this post, chances are you know at least one person who’s attending the event (if you don’t, give me a shout). Choose wisely, and ask someone to be your “conference buddy.” Offer to share your own notes and insights in exchange for a summary of that person’s exclusive in-person notes and experiences.
Read the Recaps
Even if you’ve decided to skip my first 6 suggestions, we’ve got you covered. There will be daily recaps posted by the DrivingSales team, not to mention all of the event recaps that will undoubtedly be posted by the dealer and non-dealer attendees.
Follow these steps, and you’ll be setup for a successful weekend of insights and networking, plus you’ll have double the ammunition to attend DSES in-person next year. Unfortunately, I have yet to figure out a way to virtually experience the food, inside jokes, inspiring conversations, or killer parties. If you have any suggestions, let me know in the comments!