Over the last few months we’ve been sitting down with the team behind our annual partner conference, OneCon, to get their best advice for planning and promoting a successful event.
This month, I had the chance to speak with Joe Ribaudo, Solution Provider Marketing Manager at Constant Contact, to get a sneak peek at how the team has planned for this year’s event.
I asked Joe about the big changes the OneCon team has planned for 2015, and got his take on why this is the perfect event for a digital marketing consultant who wants to grow their business.
OneCon 2015 is October 4-6, 2015 in Las Vegas!
Read our full interview below, and book your spot today.
For readers who haven’t attended OneCon in the past, could you tell us a little bit about what OneCon is and what are some of the benefits of attending?
OneCon is our annual Solution Provider partner conference. This is our third year holding the conference. We’ve made some pretty incredible leaps in the size and diversity of content from 2013 to 2014, and I think our partners are going to be pleased with what we have planned for 2015.
First and foremost, OneCon gives our partners an opportunity to meet each other and make personal connections. We have partners coming from all over the world, and the one thing we keep hearing from them is how great it was to connect with their peers. It’s a great opportunity for them to make connections, and even outsource some work to one another.
When we first sat down and started planning OneCon 2015 back in December of last year we started with one question: “How can we help our partners grow their total business?”
Our partners are going to see a wide breadth of content that has been designed to help businesses at all stages and types.
What makes OneCon 2015 different from other events we’ve hosted in the past?
As I mentioned, OneCon 2015 is going to be bigger than last year’s conference in Orlando. We’re going to have three concurrent breakout sessions in each of our “breakout blocks” to give partners more choice in what they want to learn about.
They’ll also see a lot of involvement from experts outside of Constant Contact. We’re working very hard to make sure that our partners are hearing from their peers, which has always been something that they’ve highly rated.
We’re also working to make sure that our partners have time to network with the local teams assigned to their areas. We really want our partners to know that we’re with them every step of the way—we want to help them get to that “next level.”
We’re also expanding the times where our partners can schedule 1-on-1 appointments with subject matter experts; this will be available throughout the entirety of the conference.
Finally, we have nearly a full-day of sessions designed for our Authorized Local Experts (ALEs). We’ve heard loud and clear that our ALEs enjoyed those sessions last year, so we’ve decided to expand on that for them.
And on a side note, this year’s conference is in Las Vegas! We know that it’s hard to step away from your business for a few days of relaxation, so we try to choose destinations that will allow our partners to book an extra day or two to recharge a bit!
I understand that a lot of the sessions you’re in the process of planning are focused on establishing a funnel — could you speak a bit about where the idea for that “theme” came from and why you think it’s a good fit for OneCon 2015?
Sure, so again — we tried to think of how we can help a partner’s total business, and this idea of relating our sessions to the sales funnel (and what comes before and after it) seemed like a logical choice.
So, we’ll start with some higher level business planning, then dive into top-of-the-funnel lead generation sessions, then down to selling and closing, then sessions on how to develop new services (or perfect the ones our partners currently provide), then onto some sessions on reengagement, retention, and growth.
I’m really excited about the breadth of content we’re developing for our partners this year.
Why is this a good fit? Well, our Solution Providers are a very diverse group. From the services they provide, to the size, stage, and goals of their businesses — they certainly run the gamut. This is why we’re offering more breakout options, so our partners can use OneCon to their advantage by learning about the things most applicable to their businesses. We really try to make sure that there’s going to be something that will resonate with everyone.
Could you speak a bit about why setting up a sales funnel is so important for a marketing consultant/digital marketing business?
One of the things that we continue to hear from our partners is that they’re always pressed for time… especially when it comes to finding time to grow their business and find new leads.
When you’re running your own business, you’re going to be wearing a LOT of different hats. We really wanted to take that holistic approach when designing content for OneCon this year. We’re going to start from the beginning and walk people through every step of that funnel (no matter what stage your business is at)— and a few things you can do ‘post funnel’.
These sessions are created with their core businesses in mind, as well as their business, as it relates to their Constant Contact partnership.
What are some of the sessions you’re most excited about for 2015, and why?
Wow — tough question! If I’m putting on my small business owner hat, I think I’m most drawn to the sessions that cover client retention and scaling up.
Regardless of what types of services our partners provide to their clients, I see these being pretty crucial to bring them to that “next level.” If they’re interested in growing, making sure they have a good handle on things like cash flow, managing risk, and identifying when and how to outsource work are going to be very important.
In past OneCons, we’ve focused a lot on the marketing/sales components of our partners’ businesses —these are some of the sessions where we’re going to help them look at their total businesses.
And at the end, we’ll have a general session recapping the conference to help our partners identify their next steps once they get back home (hopefully after a couple of extra days off in Vegas).
Reserve your spot!
OneCon 2015 is October 4-6, 2015.
Constant Contact partners that register before July 31st will save $100 off the regular registration price.
Not a Constant Contact Solution Provider? Learn how partnering with Constant Contact can help you grow your online marketing or consulting business.