Small Giants attended the SMPS Southwest Regional Conference from Oct. 12-14 in Albuquerque, NM as the social media and lanyard sponsor. Marketers from around the nation gathered to listen to twenty speakers who shared the latest marketing best practices, new findings and words of advice. Mandy and Kimberly are here to provide you with a recap of a few of their favorite sessions!

Session: Power Connecting – Turning Relationships into Opportunities   Presenter: Maggie Bolden of Palace Construction & Gina Kaelin-Westcott of Insperity

Networking is a challenge for most people. Some individuals don’t know how to make a graceful exit from a conversation. Others don’t know how to approach new people so they always talk to the same group. This session explored strategic approaches to networking that will have you meeting the right people in the right places and knowing what to say.

To start, questions that you should be asking your self include:

– How strategic are your relationships?

– Where does your network, network?

– Could your list of connections get to the top person?

When it comes to networking, there are three types of relationships to have. They are all built on integrity, trust, diligence, added value, reputation and willingness, but they are require different time investment:

– An individual should have 100 peripheral contacts – relationships based on mutual recognition, commonalities and trust. (Meet 3-4 times a year)

– An individual should have 50 strategic partners – relationships based on mutual recognition, commonalities and trust. (Meet 3-4 times a year)

– An individual should have five trusted advisors – relationships based on high respect. An advisor should be your influential advocate and resource for connections. (Meet once a week)


– Obtain a guest list before an event and know who to target. Have a networking plan.

– Make 2-3 good connections before leaving an event.

To Read

–  How to Be a Power Connector: The 5+50+100 Rule for Turning Your Business Network into Profits by Judy Robinett

–  Go Givers Sell More by Bob Burg and John David Mann

Session: Grace Writing – Writing Proposals with Your Whole Brain   Presenter: Jen Hebbletwaite of Graceworks, Inc. 

Knowing a client’s preference, how they like to communicate and how they think can help you create proposals that are no more and no less than what they are looking for. The Herrmann Brain Dominance Instrument (HBDI) is the world’s leading thinking style assessment tool that helps us find the answers to all of the questions above with the “Whole Brain Theory!” Learn more about the HBDI assessment here:

Session: Interview Prep – Or do we seriously have to do this? / Presenter: Matt Richof Jacobsen Construction Company 

Yes, you seriously do! Glossophobia is the number one fear that most people have… it’s the fear of public speaking! The good thing is that it’s a normal feeling that goes away in time if you remember that public speaking is just an ACT: Anticipate it, be Cognizant of it and Take a deep breath! Working with a team that you gel with also make the interview less terrifying!

A study on teams who successfully won projects through an interview revealed that:

– 81 percent had met with the client before the RFP was released
– The first meeting took place seven months before the RFP was released
– They met less than five times
– They met with staff (42 percent), department managers (65 percent) and senior executives (81 percent)
– 75 percent met with the selection committee
– These people on their team attended: non-technical (38percent), marketing (55 percent), and principals (81 percent)

The key to interview success is PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE!

Session: One Wrong Project Could Ruin Your Brand    /    Presenter: Donna Corlew of C*Connect & Craig Galati of LGA

Your brand is what your clients think of you because it represents your promise and your reputation. It’s important to identify the brand you have vs. the brand the want, but also to remember that the current perception is reality. Ways to make sure your brand is always in tip-top shape include:

– Act on feedback that is provided to you
– Obtain a guest list before an event and have a networking plan.
– Make 2-3 good connections before leaving an event
– Make sure your logo is a visual representation of your brand
– Know that a vision is where you want to be in five years, not tomorrow
– Make sure your company’s core values align with your brand promise

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