Last week I attended my first under 30’s networking event – CorpComms Magazine’s Thirsty 30’s at the Draft House. It was an evening for the comms industry members to meet, network and chat in an informal environment. A first for CorpComms, but I doubt it will be the last. I was intrigued by the concept and wondered if any real return would come of it…
What is the benefit of attending?
Turning up a ‘fashionable’ fifteen minutes late, I was blown away by the volume of attendees. Not sure what to expect, I was pleasantly surprised to see the room flowing with conversation (and beer). In total, there were around 50 attendees at peak time, all discussing industry-related topics and handing over business cards.
Millennials are becoming predominant in the communications industry and I was intrigued to find out what the different objectives were for attending. For me personally, being new to the industry, my main goal was to meet my fellow industry peers, build up my contact base and learn.
For others, goals were different – I met recruiters, Account Managers, PR Executives across a wide range of sectors, as well as Marketing Executives, such as myself. Many of these people were looking to generate leads, some were looking to recruit and some (I speculate) were there to take advantage of the ‘pour your own’ beer tap – it was a nice little touch!
The idea and the event itself was a total success for me and the people whom I met. New contacts may lead into future business opportunities and strong relationships. If you’re under 30 and reading this, I’d recommend considering attending.
Is there value for the industry and its organisations, to host an under 30’s event?
Absolutely. Of course I’d be saying this because I am under 30, but it is true. There is a new wave of communications experts forever entering the industry and, for the industry to thrive, these people need to be talking. It’s less about competition and more about working together to create a thriving industry.
For CorpComms, the return on investment is clear when there is a total of around fifty social, passionate and driven industry members in one room. It has the potential to generate new business, leads, contacts and increase the reputation of the publication. I have mentioned this previously in another drptalk post ‘What is Content Marketing?’, but it’s all about providing useful content and opportunities to give us that added value. This is exactly what arranging these events does!
As I was interested to find out about their next event I spoke to Olivia and Laura, the ‘under 30’ representatives from CorpComms, who organised and managed the event (great job!). Keen to ensure that their idea grows, they are looking at new, innovative ideas to increase engagement at the events. One idea they have is holding a ping pong evening. Personally, I think this idea is great, because networking doesn’t have to be done in formal venues in ‘work’ time. The concept of having a beer or glass of wine with fellow peers, for me, is a winner and something I hope grows more and more.