How to Navigate and Get the Most from Marijuana Business Conferences

Diane Czarkowski
April 24, 2016

It’s all About Achieving your Cannabis Business Goals & Expanding your Network

In today’s digital world, it’s easy to stay home and rely on e-mail, internet resources and webinars to interact with people across the country or the world. But that makes meeting people face-to-face even more valuable for solidifying relationships, exchanging ideas and personally interacting with experts who can answer your questions and share actionable information that solves a problem.

This is especially important in the marijuana business where reliable information may be scarce and the opportunity to meet with experienced consultants can be rare. Canna Advisors assists clients and investors with evaluating opportunities, designing their business plans, building sustainable facilities and efficiently managing growing operations.

So, how do you figure out what sessions to attend, who you should meet with and if it’s worth skipping some events to make an important contact? More than ever, networks are an essential piece of “social capital” you need to meet your business goals.

Come Early or Stay Late

Since you’re traveling to the conference anyway, why not come a day or two early and take advantage of “pre-conference” eventsconference add-ons and evening meet-ups, or stay afterward to connect with certain vendors, businesses and people. It’s a good way to gain more insight into the industry and make contacts.

Many industry organizations plan these additional events around the larger conferences and are sometimes fundraisers for trade organizations or non-profits that support the industry in some way.


Once You’ve Arrived, Choose the Right Sessions

There’s bound to be many more sessions involving the marijuana business than you can possibly attend. Look for a “first-timers briefing” if you’ve never attended before – you’ll meet other new attendees and get an overview of what’s available.

Review the overall schedule of events. Choose those that hold special interest for you and make sure you’re attending a variety of topics, workshops and social events while allowing for some downtime to relax a bit. Use your time wisely and you’ll get the most out of your attendance while still making contacts and learning new skills.

Take notes in a way that makes it easy to remember the key points– try to distill it down to 3 takeaways from each session and you can follow-up later if you need more information. These can turn into specific action items when your return to work and may spark further discussion with your team.


The Speakers are Experts – Ask Questions

The speakers from Canna Advisors are experts in a variety of fields and have proven successful in winning cannabis business licenses across the country. We are always pleased to meet conference attendees and welcome you to visit our booth and connect with us in person. We’re also available to schedule private meetings with those who want to chat with our partners.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions or hang around after the session. Introduce yourself and get the speaker’s contact information so you can connect later if you don’t have a chance to ask a question. You can follow them on social media and interact after the conference for more specific information.


Attend the Social Events

Make time to attend the social events at the conference – it’s the perfect opportunity to meet others in a more casual setting. This is where you make contacts and expand the network that helps you build your marijuana business and meet your goals. This is also where you make plans to meet after the conference or set up time to continue a great conversation at a later date.

Be sure you bring plenty of business cards with your contact information. Most people come home with a stack of cards and can’t remember who they belong to or whether they need to keep a particular card. Take time to look at all the cards each day and make a note on the back about a specific follow-up question or whether you want to add this person to your address book.


Share the Wealth When You Return to Work

With all the new skills, resources and inspiration you’ve gained, share what you’ve learned with your team. Share valuable videos, post interesting information or tips that you learned (be sure to give credit to the source) and spread the word. And…it doesn’t hurt to do a personal follow-up with anyone you met that you’d like to do business with or build a relationship.

As we said at the beginning: It’s all about maximizing the benefits of attending the conference by building your network and achieving your goals for your cannabis business.

Canna Advisors offers assistance with business development, designing facilities and advising investors as well as licensing, operational plans, and proven strategies for success in your cannabis business. For more information, please call us at 720.708.3154 or use our online contact form.


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