Like any big expo, DMEXCO is an incredible place for you to network, learn and hear what smart and interesting people have to say.
Also like any big expo, conference or meet-up, attending DMEXCO has some pitfalls that you should watch out for. We’ve attended for a few years running now, so we can share some advice.
eyeo's top tips for DMEXCO
#1 – Get comfortable.
Yes, the conference is a great place to network. However, most of the real networking is done after the main show, in the bars and parties. It’s therefore imperative that you get to the end of the day feeling fresh, with a little energy left for an embarrassing dance off. Sore feet and a bad back won’t help your cause.
We would recommend wearing your most comfortable shoes/sneakers and leaving the heels/smart shoes at home.
Think about what you’re planning to carry as well. If you don’t need your laptop/notebook/3 tons of swag, bring the smallest bag you can. If you really must carry all that delicious swag, take a backpack, rather than a shoulder bag. You’ll thank us when you have the energy to network over drinks in the center of Cologne after a full day!
#2 – Hydrate!
You know the old joke: You’re made of so much water you’re essentially a cucumber with feelings. It’s amazing how much of that precious liquid you lose by walking around all day, breathing, perspiring, talking and just generally being alive. Add the dehydration factor of aircon, the three coffees you had for breakfast and the beautiful Cologne sun shining down on you (hopefully) as you walk to the conference center, and all of a sudden you might feel a little parched.
Water is your friend! Either take a bottle with you, or pick some up at DMEXCO, but please, please keep yourself hydrated. I recommend this app, if like me, you get so excited about networking you forget to drink water. However you do it, get that sweet H2O inside you!
#3 – Gum and deodorant.
Seriously. How can you win friends and influence people if your sales pitch smells like three hour old coffee? A tiny pack of gum can make the difference between a new lead and an enemy for life. Same goes for deodorant. While deodorant companies may advertise 24 hour protection, we can guarantee after 12 hours in a sweaty conference center, you’ll wish you had brought more.
Do yourself, your new friends and passersby a favor – bring both of these.
#4 – Use business cards correctly.
Business cards might be slowly disappearing thanks to new-fangled tech like scanning your badge, but we still see use in them. Simply sticking the hundred or so cards that you get at DMEXCO in your pocket will not help you. You need to get smart with your business cards.
Take a pen (I know, we’re pretty old-school for a tech company, right?) and scribble some details down when accepting someone’s card. When you get home after the event you will have a collection of useful business cards that you can follow up on, rather than a collection of new bookmarks.
#5 – Get to know Cologne.
Cologne isn’t just DMEXCO and other trade fairs. There’s the biggest Gothic cathedral in northern Europe, more than 30 museums, great beer and some of the longest sausages you’ve seen in your life.
Why not get out of the conference, stretch your legs and see a fantastic city? Check out our travel guide to Cologne here if you need a hand getting around! See, we’re always happy to help.