How to hack Web Summit: 15 tips from one of our success stories

ALPHA for 2015 is now closed. You can still attend as an attendee or sign up to exhibit at ALPHA 2016.

Mailjet are firing since they exhibited at Web Summit last year. They provide an all-in-one email marketing solution and are now sending over one billion emails a month for partners like Galeries LafayetteTag Heur and MIT.

Since joining START, they’ve raised $11 million and say that their Web Summit experience was ‘instrumental’ in securing a number of key partnerships – particularly their recently announced deal with Microsoft.

They’re now sending star players from their London, New York, Berlin and Paris offices to Web Summit next month, one of whom is CMO Judy Chang Boniface.

Judy has been sound enough to share the 15 hacks all Web Summit startups need to know about before arriving in Dublin. If you’re a visual kind of person, check out their slick infographic.

Take it from the guys who know how to hack Web Summit…

Pre-Web Summit Prep


Data-mine the attendee list to prioritise meeting targets
Know who you want to meet before you get there. Don’t rely on bumping into people. Check out our hack on Github, courtesy of the very talented Emmanuel Boisgontier.

Set up meetings by sending personalised messages
We like to use Crystalknows in the Mailjet offices. Who likes to get generic messages? Use your personality to your advantage.

Print special business cards with your smiley face on it
How often do you hear someone apologise for “being so bad with names?” How often do you hear someone say they “never forget a face?” Get your face out there.

Get your team to recite the elevator pitch and FAQs 20 times
And then do them a 21st time. You can never be over-prepared when it comes to your pitch. Never.

Eva Longoria running lines before her Web Summit 2014 talk. If it’s good enough for Eva, it’s good enough for all of us. 

Create a pocket-sized cheat sheet for your top 20 contact targets
Things can get frantic on the floor. Don’t let it get to you. Identify your targets.

Portable cellphone battery packs save lives

How to hustle during Web Summit

A 2014 ALPHA startup goes all out with a memorable outfit. Think about trying it out. 

“Stalk” key contacts and influencers
Draw up a dedicated Web Summit influencer Twitter list. It’ll help you know what people are talking about and where they’re doing the talking.

If you’re exhibiting, schedule tweets to broadcast your stand location
Let people know where you’re at and about any giveaways or demos you’re holding. We like to use Buffer.

Don’t have a booth? Capture foot traffic outside the main theatres 
If you’re not exhibiting on a particular day, think about how to get people’s attentions in other ways: with attention-grabbing costume and swag. Who wouldn’t want one of these chic tees?

Stay in touch with your team with a group chat 
Get your team on WhatsApp and make sure you’re all easy to get a hold of.

Scan business cards on the fly and add notes to your conversation
Hopefully you’ll be exchanging plenty of cards. Use apps to get the info from the cards straight to your phone. CamCard is great for this.

Remember to recharge
Take a nap between 6pm and 8pm and get your game face on for the outings at night. The networking doesn’t end at 5pm.

Enjoying the craic at Night Summit 2014. 

How to follow up

Create a new dedicated Twitter list 
Get all your new contacts into a list and and keep engaging.

Start drip email campaigns to interesting contacts
Use tools like Sidekick the week after the event. Make sure your email signature game is strong. So key!

Review your conversation notes and nail the first meeting with prospective customers
Keep hustling.

Stripe‘s John Collison on his grind at Web Summit 2014. Get on yours.

Exhibit at the world’s most important startup gathering. Apply to ALPHA 2016.

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