Melwin Joy
AUTHOR

Melwin Joy

All stories by: Melwin Joy
RISE Conference 2018

What is RISE?

RISE is produced by the team behind Web Summit. In 6 short years, Web Summit has become Europe’s largest tech conference which last year attracted 53,000 attendees from 136 countries around the world.

RISE is “the largest tech gathering in Asia”, according to CNBC. It’s where international tech convenes, a meeting place for China, Asia and the world. From July 9th to 12th in Hong Kong, the founders and CEOs of the world’s most influential companies meet at RISE for a series of onstage addresses, drinks and dinner receptions, and private and off-the-record meetings. They’ll come from both east and west, to better understand their counterparts on the other side of the world.

People from the world’s biggest companies and most exciting startups will come to Hong Kong to share their stories and experiences. They’ll be joined by major global media, hundreds of investors and thousands of attendees for three days of legendary networking.

RISE is an international affair. There will be people from right the way across the globe joining the event. Here are the most represented countries.

  • Brazil
  • Canada
  • China
  • Denmark
  • France
  • Hong Kong SAR
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Japan
  • Malaysia
  • Philippines
  • Singapore
  • South Korea
  • Thailand
  • USA
  • The United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom

240 Amazing Speakers

He’s joining RISE. Catch Gary Vaynerchuk for two Q&As and one Centre Stage appearance on July 11th at 4.30pm. We’re also going to hear from co-founder & executive vice chairman of Alibaba Group, Joe Tsai; Razer CEO, Min-Liang Tan and Stripe co-founder, John Collison.

600 Game-Changing Start-ups

As RISE is the meeting place for the people leading the companies of both today and tomorrow. On each event day, you’ll meet a new group of exhibiting startups across our ALPHA, BETA and START tracks. We’d bet that we’ll see a few of these founders onstage at RISE stage in the coming years. Keep an eye out for AfterShip, Yroo, Branch.

400 Leading Investors

GGV Capital managing partner Hans Tung, ZhenFund CEO Anna Fang, and Presence Capital managing director Phil Chen are among the 400 investors joining us in Hong Kong.

Many of our attending investors will take part in our Office Hours programme, where RISE startups meet investors for 15 minutes of one-on-one advice. Some of the leading funds involved include Arbor Ventures, Goldman Sachs and Naspers.

565 World-Class Media

There’ll be stories to tell, and the presence of media to ensure that your stories are conveyed to the people. You may just catch reporters and anchors from CNBC, Reuters, Bloomberg, CNN, China Daily and Xinhua as they hit the RISE floor.

What should you do?

Preparation is key

Before you head to a conference, it pays to do some prep. Visit the website and check out the speakers, key media personalities and venture capital companies. Reach out to some with emails ahead of time so that you are on their radar.

Joining the conference Facebook group is good. These have a lot of people whom you can run into. Do some research, check out potential connections and opportunities before getting in touch to say hello ahead of time.

Save screenshots of people’s faces and review them before the event. This will come in handy when you are in the crowd and spot the most important faces from it. It also gives people a thrill to be recognised like that!

Brand yourself

One of the things that you need to do as a start-up at a large event is to make sure you stand out. Well it just means that the participants will have to recognise you even in the crowd. Custom t-shirts, advertisements, logo displays, image sharing through social media with suitable hash tags, invitations for visit to eminent personalities etc. are just tricks that will score big.

If you are thorough with your branding before the event then by the time the whole thing is underway in real time lots of people already know who you are.

Talk to everyone

When it comes to attending conferences and events, it is important to start lots of conversations. You could be sitting next to a potential investor or your next business partner and you’ll never know unless you start talking.

Ask a lot of people where they are from, who they are and what the best thing was that they had seen that day, which can help in breaking the ice and get to know them. Even if you won’t make a lasting connection, enjoy the opportunity to help others and share your knowledge.

Show others you care

Once your conference stand is manned, the best way to start is by walking up to as many people possible and strike a conversation with them. Before you start pitching, try to understand who they are and make them feel that you are ‘interested’. Once you know what they were looking for tailor your pitching accordingly.

If you meet someone representing an investor ask them about the businesses they invest in. If they are not the right fit for you make it a point to put them in touch with people who are a better fit. If you feel that they are right for you get their business details and contacts so that you could follow up after the conference.

Take notes

In a business conference attended by thousands of people getting information is easy. One easy way – collect business cards! It’s easy to forget the conversations you had and what people were looking for, so make sure to write notes on all the collected cards. Once you are free sort out through them and categorise as per the category and prepare additional reports on them. This will avoid confusion and this will make your post conference follow-ups easier.

Follow up

Fifty percent of the value of the conference you attend comes after the event itself. Make time in your schedule once the event is over to sit and follow up with the people you’ve met. This will result in more than a dozen phone meetings to talk about partnerships and future opportunities.

Overall, attending the RISE Conference will be a fantastic experience and a great way to get your business in front of potential investors, strategic partners and fellow entrepreneurs. Do everything you can to maximise the return on investment on your exciting overseas adventure, while making a lot of new friends and acquaintances.

Here’s to three days and four nights of legendary networking in Hong Kong. Jūk néih hóuwahn!

Melwin Joy
AUTHOR

Melwin Joy

All stories by: Melwin Joy