The event redefining the global tech industry that gathers entrepreneurs, startups, investors, major companies, and world leaders is back, and no one wants to miss the opportunity of being physically there.
The Web Summit machine is running at full speed for a return to normality after a virtual edition in 2020 and a more controlled run in 2021, and we feel like it’s part of our job to give you the best tips to make the most of the event, and of course, Lisbon.
Softlanding knows all the questions that pop to mind when preparing for this conference, and that is why we leave you here some tips and hacks to help you take advantage of everything Web Summit has to offer:
Preparation is key
- Web Summit is all about being seen! Whether you are a startup or simply representing your company, make sure that you are promoting your brand as much as possible;
- Know your product in meticulous detail and be prepared to talk about it nonstop;
- Train your empathy and work on improving your communication skills. You need to learn how to feel free, and when you meet new people at Web Summit, be willing and eager to talk and able to answer slightly more complex technical questions that may surge;
- Take every opportunity to network. The whole Web Summit is networking heaven, but somehow unintentional connections away from the booths stay with you the most because of their informality;
- Unless you are a major company, we wouldn’t recommend bringing any branding that is too expensive or heavy – it may not pay off and will be a pain to transport;
- Take care of investors beforehand and contact them way before the conference starts. If you are looking for funding from specific VCs, create pitch decks just for them – the funds will only invest in the niche they specialize in. Memorize the names and faces of the representatives of the funds and book meetings ahead. Don’t forget to follow up afterwards;
- Last but not least and equally important – focus on comfortable shoes, as your feet will be on fire by the end of day 1.
Pitch as if your life depends on it
Throughout the conference, you will hear dozens, if not hundreds of pitches, so you need to find a way to stand out. You should be able to answer the following questions:
- What is your product all about?
- How are you different from your competitors?
- What are the main features, and how do they work?
It would help if you also were prepared to ask some uncomfortable questions, like those about your weaknesses or bigger competitors. You can prepare yourself by knowing your strengths and weaknesses and researching your competitors’ weaknesses.
Remember that the key to pitching is to establish a meaningful connection first. Ask questions and show interest in the person you are trying to connect with. Not only will this help you modify your pitch for a better chance to convert, but it will also show the other person you are there to help solve their problems.
Night Summit is worth your appearance
Most of the best networking goes on at Night Summit, so make sure you know where to be each night preceding the conference. Night Summit is the best place to understand your leads – in a neutral atmosphere, and after a few drinks, you can ask them whatever you need to make the sale, and they will eagerly tell you what’s on their mind. Even if you don’t want to network, Night Summit is a great way to unwind after a hard day. If you’d like to catch up with Softlanding, give us a heads up as we will be there.
You’ll find more gatherings than you could attend each night in Lisbon. Look for the ones that suit your objectives, as it is a great way to zoom in on a particular sub-section of the event.
Talks worth attending
Leadership and Investment: Defying gravity: Growing a startup in a downturn, How to navigate an evolving digital economy, Scale v profit, Building infrastructure for European innovations, What investors look for in a product roadmap, Navigating through a SaaS recession, Key factors for dominating user acquisition in 2023, Betting on the future: Where VCs are investing next, The future of ‘buy now, pay later’, for B2B, Unlock the power of global remote teams today, How brands deal with an ageing society, Secure investing: Know what you are getting into, Making sense of the future of work
Fintech and Crypto: Prioritising the customer journey in fintech, Q&A with Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao, Investing, neo-banking and green investing, Can banks compete with fintechs?, Crypto and financial institutions, Decarbonising crypto, What’s next for digital banking?, Send money without a bank account, Unbanked potential, Transitioning to the Web3 economy, How OpenSea is building the NFT ecosystem, Connecting AR and the metaverse to bring utility to NFTs, Why GameFi continues to grow despite the crypto downturn, How to stay hot this winter, How to scale globally, while disrupting the payments landscape, How blockchain will change the future of fandom, Investing in the wake of the crypto crash, Will regulation scale crypto into the mainstream, Unlock cash: What your bank isn’t telling you, The future of crypto: What’s next for this craze?, How NFTs will really be used
Marketing and Advertising: How Gen Z consumes news, How the fusion of adtech and fintech will disrupt the marketing industry, Future-proofing the creator economy, How Jameson whiskey rocks its marketing mix with AI, UI/UX trends in 2023, The bedrock of the next digital era, Bridging the gap between web 2.0 and Web3, The cost of going viral, Next-gen news, start-ups and streamers, Owning your niche, Digital transformation and the future of marketing, Advertising is dead, Marketing in a recession, Will Web3 make or break social media?, Going viral, Meet the 2022 ‘Best Global Brands’, Who do you want to be in the metaverse?, How AI is changing the future of work and democratising business communications, How blockchain, privacy and data are driving a new era of advertising
AI and Machine Learning: Alexa’s next AI trick: Disappearing, AI’s roadmap for global prosperity, Time to define AI, The future of AI image generation is the creator, Me, myself, and generative AI, The journey to intelligent creative, Will quantum computing revolutionise our daily lives?, Building better experiences with behavioural AI, How super apps can create better cities, How AI is transforming product development, 6 rules for dominating the decade of data, Hardware that can read your mind, How to regulate AI, Closing the loop with AI: Turning waste into resources, Debunking the great AI lie
Sustainability: Is climate salvation lost in translation?, Climate tech: A trillion-dollar opportunity, What next for the global economy?, Decoding data to decarbonise our planet, The power of a purpose-driven brand, Space isn’t just for billionaires, Can a virtual world build a more sustainable one?, Blockchain with a purpose, Diving deep into the blue economy, Innovating our way out of the carbon crisis, Can you be mission-driven and VC-backed?, Drive the change, change the drive, How to unlock supply chains’ full potential, Sustainable mobility for future good, The future of solar cars, Alternative fuels: The race to replace, Investing in circularity, Leading the way to net zero, Taking greenwashing out of climate tech VC, How digitisation can power sustainability, Opportunities for climate and ocean innovation, Powering the transition to renewable energy
Attending the four days of Web Summit is no piece of cake, but all that preparation, pitches, sleepless nights, and days spent on your feet will bear fruits for months after the conference. And there’s nowhere else you can get that experience!