Presenting on behalf of your non-profit organization, social enterprise, or socially responsible business can be as easy as stepping up and waxing lyrical. But sometimes, you may need to think through some contingencies. Here is a checklist of items to take your next presentation or speaking event. You can download the list as a printable below!
- Business cards – Bring more than you will need, along with a card holder if you are using a display table. Consider distributing a business card to each participant, or arranging for a swap following a Q & A period.
- Plenty of brochures, 1 pagers (and books if you have them) – As a rule, bring enough for 40% of the audience to take home or purchase. Bring along any handouts, postcards, or other items for attendees/audience. Prearrange for these to be in their packets if you can. More and more conferences are producing electronic materials: make sure you submit yours in advance.
- Mailing list sign-up form – There are several ways to approach this. You can have a sign-up sheet on your table or a way for attendees to drop in a business card. use a small basket or a gift bag to collect business cards. Also make sure to offer some incentive for signing up by holding a drawing for a prize (free book) or give away a report or ebook.
- Table cloths – This add a little polish and makes any folding table you might end up with look good. You may want to bring a second table cloth along and use it along with storage boxes, turned upside down, to add height to your table and create some dimension.
- Signage – A well printed sign and a table stand can be used multiple times! You can have a banner created with grommets that can be tied up behind you in a trade show booth. Or you can print a large foam-core poster to be showcased on a small easel. A Step and Repeat is a great idea if you have the budget.
- Order forms – You may also want to offer special discounts on consulting, training programs or other products and services. Order forms also come in handy in the event that you run out of books. If you have multiple books, consider bundling them together at a discount (people love these!).
- Donation Forms – If you are representing a non-profit be sure to take donation forms with you that offer a range of options for giving.
- Credit card processing plan– You will miss out on sales or donations if you don’t have a way to process credit cards. If you have an iPhone, check out www.squareup.com, which gives you a credit card swipe device for your phone. You can also collect credit card information on your order forms and process them with Paypal’s or Stripe’s Virtual Terminal service. Your non profit may prefer you use donation forms.
- Tape and scissors – It’s amazing how often these items come in handy. Extra pushpins and duct tape can be often quite useful! Some bulldog clips can also be very useful for making that table cloth cooperate.
- Power board (or power strip)– you never know when you’re need one, especially if are needed to plug in a laptop. Consider also bringing array of adapters if you will be using on-site audio visual equipment, and perhaps an extension cord.
- Pens – It’s also helpful to have a few extra pens on hand, plus a Sharpie in case you need to make a sign. I like to store pens for workshops in a small hard plastic box – i often throw extras i pick up at conferences and on the road in there – waste not, want not.
- Large rolling suitcase or rolling crate – This makes it easy to store and transport everything. Something with handles helps you lift it in and out of a vehicle.
Of course you can add to this list and bring promotional items: pens, mugs, squishy balls, fidget toys, a bowl of candy, a jar or vase and some flowers, or anything else that will add appeal to the table – i’ve even used the front of a toy doll’s house on a table to represent a child’s home.
This is a basic list which you can adapt to your own uses!
Speaker. Reader. Thinker. Writer. Traveler. Advocate
Anna Blanch Rabe, founder of Anna Blanch Rabe & Associates, has been working with Social Enterprises, socially-responsible businesses, educational institutions, and non-profit organizations since 2006 to develop and effectively execute strategic, digital, and narrative initiatives to gain exposure, develop community capacity, attract talent, and reach new customers. Anna is an Australian-born speaker, writer and advocate. Connect with Anna on Academia.edu, Linked In, Instagram, facebook page, & Twitter.