Happy New Year! There are lots of things bubbling around as we enter 2016, but as MIPIM gets closer, don’t lose sight of the fact that it is a hugely effective tool for business development as well as a chance to get across to the South of France in the spring. With this in mind, we’re revisiting last year’s highly-popular measure of MIPIM post, to kick things off.
Historically, people went to MIPIM to strengthen existing relationships, with little thought about how it could impact their new and long-term business development.
Now, though, everyone attends MIPIM to promote their services and network, so there’s no shame for those who are there to do the same. Indeed, this is one of the reasons networking here is so much easier than at other events in the property calendar. We’ve talked before about how to prepare for your meetings, but it’s also worth bearing in mind that you can meet a potential new business lead at any time. You could find yourself speaking to someone in the taxi up to an event in the hills, for example, or even on the flight to Cannes – don’t automatically discount any venue or opportunity!
From prospect to client
The ‘conversion’ from prospect to client can take a while, but it is measurable. MIPIM is the epitome of the ‘long game’ and rarely garners instant results. It’s important to keep a record of the people you meet, note what you discussed and maintain the relationship. We started working with someone two years after first meeting them at MIPIM. We kept in touch and once they were ready to start thinking about communications, we were their first choice.
Nurturing existing relationships
While MIPIM is a great opportunity to meet new people, which should not be underestimated, don’t forget those you already know. This environment is a great place to quickly rekindle and reinforce relationships within a short timeframe – as well as making new connections for those you find time to meet up with.
Go with an open mind
And although you’ll (hopefully) be attending with a full schedule of diarised meetings, approach people with an open mind, despite the number of delegates attending it really is a small world.
If business development is the main reason for your attendance in Cannes, set yourself achievable goals in the run-up. Bearing in mind that MIPIM opportunities can be a slow burn, aim to come back with at least six new connections to stay in touch with back in the UK.
Top tip: one way of measuring MIPIM is how your feet feel by the end!