The first thing you should pack is your marketing and promotional materials. You’ll have the opportunity to meet and connect with several major players in the industry, i.e. executives, Grammy Award winning producers and engineers, publicists, musicians, and singers, in addition to the hundreds of attendees who will be with you from across the country. This may be your only chance to promote to this select group of individuals, so come prepared. In addition to your marketing collaterals (business cards, flyers, CDs, etc.), the second thing you should bring is your elevator pitch. Create a 30-second synopsis, detailing what you do. There’ll be plenty of people networking with panelists directly afterwards and you’ll need to make a quick, lasting, and killer impression. Practice often so you’ll sound confident and savvy. Third, bring a pleasant attitude. There is nothing more humorous than a person arriving at an event acting ‘hollywood.’ You know, nose in the air, trying to look important, and snubbing the people around them. As Quincy Jones, producer extraordinaire, said to the We Are the World artists, “leave your egos at the door.” Being pushy and inconsiderate only devalues your brand and creates for you the wrong type of hype. Save yourself the trouble and come correct. Fourth, dress to impress. During the day wear clothing that expresses your fashion creativity, but at the same time represents your business side. Again, you only have one time to make a good first impression. Look professional and tasteful. At night, have fun! Lastly, bring all the questions you have about the music industry. You’ve invested time, energy, and funds to attend the California Music Industry Summit-make the most of it. Take advantage of the expertise you’ll have at your disposal. Don’t be shy and intimidated. Professionals love questions; ask them!
_____________________________________________________Claudette Oatis is a staff writer for CMIS and handles Artist and Public Relations for Black Pearl Entertainment.