Why a virtual event?
Because we start planning for the Expo the year before, we couldn’t 100% guarantee 1) that an in-person Expo would be permissible with government guidelines and 2) that buyers and attendees would be able and willing to travel. As a result, the Steering Committee made the decision to go 100% virtual and put our efforts into ensuring a virtual event that replicates the experience you’re used to at Meet the Buyers.
How can you replicate an in-person event virtually?
The Expo will be utilizing the Brella platform to provide 1-on-1 AI-enhanced matchmaking. This will give you the opportunity to make purposeful connections based on mutual interests.
More information on Brella and your Expo experience will be communicated by email leading up to the Expo date.
What is included in the registration fee?
Registration is your entry to the Expo platform.
Who are the Buyers?
Buyers are the purchasing agents, procurement professionals or contacts from the various larger private businesses and government agencies looking to buy products or services from smaller, local business sources.
How do I meet with Buyers?
Buyer representatives will have Brella profiles just like you. About one week before the start of the Expo, you will receive your invite code to access the Brella platform and set up your profile. As part of this process you will choose your matchmaking categories and will be matched up with buyers to request meetings.
Who is sponsoring the Expo?
Funding for this event is a combination of registration fees and sponsorships. The event sponsors are supporting the majority of the cost of this event.
Please take note to whom the sponsors are and consider supporting them whenever possible. They are committed to the mission of helping to provide a viable business community and encouraging local sourcing whenever possible.
Will I get business at the Expo?
Generally not, although it has happened in the past.
You will have approximately 10 minutes during your meeting with a Buyer. A short meeting does not create a buying relationship – it’s just a start. However, you will come away having spoken with a representative at the target office or business and you now have the proper contact information. It is up to you to pursue building the relationship that could lead to a sale!
Will they call me back?
Follow up after the Expo is critical, and is your responsibility!
This type of event is the first step in your marketing efforts with the companies you contact. You will need to follow up periodically – without being too intrusive. If the company doesn’t have an immediate need for your business’ products or services, when the opportunity arises they will have your name and contact information.
What should I bring with me?
Please be sure you join the Expo with the following materials:
- Business Capabilities Statement
- Elevator Speech
- Researched business needs for your scheduled buyers
How should I dress?
While many business expos are business casual, you should consider this Expo to be a sales call and dress appropriately. You can never go wrong when you dress in business attire.
Why do I need to provide my NAICS codes and a brief company description?
As a benefit to you, this information will be provided to all the Buyers in attendance. This is another way to help increase your company’s visibility with government, large corporations and other organizations even if you don’t meet directly with a particular Buyer. You must register prior to September 30, 2021 for your information to be included.
(NAICS code is the North American
Industry Classification System – go to:
www.naics.com to find your industry code. However, be aware that not all businesses will be listed in these codes)
How will I know which Buyers are attending?
Go to the “Buyer” page on this website to check and see which agencies or companies have registered. Starting in May 2021, this section will be updated periodically as new Buyers are confirmed.
The Buyer page will include the company name, a brief description of the company, a list of the typical products or services they would be seeking and any special requirements for their vendors.