It’s been a busy couple of weeks at Approach towers with proposals, new business wins and exciting periods in our clients’ calendars; three of our favourite things. However, with October marking the return of Leeds Business Week, we made sure to take the time out to attend well-curated workshops and seminars.

If you’re unfamiliar with Leeds Business Week, be sure to follow the team at Yorkshire Mafia to keep up with events throughout the year, as well as the week itself – perfectly timed in early October once we’re settled following the usual summer holidays/back to school feeling of September (is it just us who opt for a stationery spree around this time of year…?).

Attending a scope of business-focused and digital-led events, we’ve pulled together our key takeaways from the week below.

  1. Networking is just conversation

The term ‘networking’ can bring some people out in a cold sweat/ panic/ run in the opposite direction (all of the above?), however, what can easily be forgotten in a ‘business environment’ is that networking is really just the art of having a conversation. Ask a question, listen to the answer and take it from there – it sounds simple, but you don’t need to have a sales pitch ready or walk away with a ready-made client from each networking event. 

2.   Making the most of digital tools

Working in the digital sphere, it’s easy to get into a routine of using specific tools to analyse, monitor and report on your results. Attending events and keeping on top of industry training ensures we’re kept in the loop of new developments in this ever-evolving world!

3.   People have very short attention spans 

Whether it’s the art of pitching and presenting or creating video content, your audience is likely to be very time-short. Their attention needs to be instantly grabbed – be it through shock, a statistic or offering a solution. How do you keep your audiences hooked?

4.    The future isn’t video

(Woah, what?) 

Video content is very current and accounts for 78% of web traffic – if it’s not already part of your overall communications strategy, why not? But, the future is interactive video. Think immersing yourself in another reality or shopping straight through a video advert – anything that captures your audience for longer than the key first three seconds. (As an interesting side-note for points three and four, we learnt from team Google/YouTube this week, that they’re soon to remove the ’30 second no-skip advert’ option for creators; viewers’ attention just cannot be captured for that long without providing them with a ‘skip now’ option.) 

5. Never stop learning!

Whatever your industry, interests or seniority, it’s so important to remain constantly evolving and developing to keep up with trends, industry changes and of course, meeting new people and businesses. Check out our thoughts on moving forward with professional development here

What are your top tips for ensuring you’re always on your development A-game? Tweet us at @Approach_PR, we’d love to know!


(Image via Leeds Business Week)