Quick tips to keep in mind while setting up your meetings when visiting Valley/US

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A couple of startups we know well are going to TiECon on 16-17th May in Santa Clara. Like any sensible entrepreneur, they are trying to make most of their visit and are setting up meetings there. The first time visitors may find the following tips useful. They are pretty logical – so most of you might have been keeping these in mind already. Still, no harm going through them once more.

1. First figure out who all are your top priorities to meet while you are there. These could be Potential Customers, Partners / Key Potential Tie-ups, Investors, etc. Tools that will be handy for this: Google, Linkedin, People visible in conferences for your specific domain.

2. Create specific email that you could send to someone requesting for intro & that he/she can effectively copy paste while introducing you. Eg – with random placeholder data.
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Hi Billoo-Mentor,

As we had discussed, I will be in Valley from 10th May to 18th May. I am looking to meet some potential customers there. Thanks for offering to connect me to Bill Gates from Microsoft. I have composed the below email that you could use while introducing. Please feel free to edit. Thanks a lot for your support.

Regards,

Raju-Entrepreneur

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Hi Bill,

Trust all is well.

I wanted to quickly introduce you to Raju who is the founder of Almost-Successfull Pvt Ltd (www.almostsuccessfulpvtltd.com) – one of the startups I have been mentoring closely. They help businesses improve their productivity by helping businesses plan drinking games involving actual business outputs.

Raju is looking to expand his business to US and is in valley from 10th to 18th for TieCon. I was wondering if you could spare some time to meet him & guide him on the same.

Thanks for the help.

Cheers,

Billoo-Mentor

1. Reach out to your mentors / advisors / linkedin-common-links and see if they are connected to people you wish to reach out to.

2. They will (hopefully) offer to introduce you to many people. Categorise those into the following and act as per below:

a. Directly Relevant People: Of-course…Set these up. Fill up your calendar with these. This is what you are there for.
b. Nice guys who are active in ecosystem: Set, say, only 2-3 of these up. Also, ensure you keep extra days in your calendar. The nice guys will end up pointing you to towards many directly relevant people too. Ensure you have enough extra days to cover those up too.
c. Rest: This includes the other nice guys not covered above. Just take the contacts for these people along with you. If you still have time, then shoot them an email marking your mentor in CC, apologize for the last minute request and meet them then.

3. Basically, avoid the situation where someone introduces you and you are not able to do the meeting.

4. Also, people everywhere are helpful; And before you fly out from India – you will feel that you don’t know what you will be doing for 10 days there – rest assured, if you are an entrepreneur you will be able to figure it out quite quickly within the first few days. Keep extra time in hand for this.

6. Do spend some time in the cafes. Do go for a trek in the weekend. Do attend some startup events / meetups / demos. Leave some time & create avenues for potential serendipity too. If it happens, great. If not, you will have a good time for sure.

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