It’s all in the eyes at the 2016 #CRAConf

First time at the ACRAs? Planning to make contacts? It’s all in the eyes.

Seasoned networkers know that, so when you’re at our radioinfo drinks or at the ACRAs you’ll make more effective connections with good eye contact.
There is nothing more off-putting than talking to someone while they are looking around the room presumably to find someone better to talk to.
radioinfo has caught up with three seasoned ACRA’s attendees for their anecdotes and advice for communicating effectively this year.
I struck out at my very first ACRAs, says seasoned networker number 1.
Strike 1 – Found my own group PD. Thought we could ‘catch up’. Until he asked which network I was announcing for.
Strike 2 – Found a rival networks Group PD. Great chat until they were distracted by an opportune time to grab the obligatory Hamish and Andy selfie. Do those guys even get a toilet break on ACRAS night?
Strike 3 – Clearly my choice of attire was ill thought out. As I passed a prominent table, an equally prominent Melbourne AM broadcaster called me over to ask if I could tell him what the vegetarian option was.
It took me 5 ACRAs to work out it’s a great excuse to catch up with the kid who used to be on the street team fetching you a water at OB’s, but is now hosting a nationally networked show and getting paid figures longer than your hotline number.
My advice? Just keep emailing your demos all year round.”
Seasoned networker number 2:
“Radio’s night of nights, the one night of the year where you mingle with your peers, network with the talent you look up to and meet the people who you talk to on FB but have never met, often you meet your next boss and impress (or regret saying what you did when you end up working with them 6 months later) and for some it is where the next girlfriend, boyfriend or one-night stand is met.
The alcohol runs freely, the guard is lowered, you can approach just about anyone for a chat so why not go over and say hello? What have you got to lose?

So there you are in line to get into the venue, looking for your table, at pre – drinks or at the conference the day before and you spot someone you know or would be keen to chat to.
I have been in radio a while and spotted someone who I had been up against in one of the majors until this person moved to a different market to do one of the bookend shows.
Had a ton of respect for this talent, that was lost within 30 seconds. I went over, said hello, shook his hand and paid him a compliment on his work and was returned with a blank face, a look around the room and a “Oh that’s nice” and watched him walk away to the food buffet.
Tip – Be a douche bag and you will be remembered for being one. If for one night, leave the ego at the door and meet as many people as you can, you will meet and work with them, beware if they ever become your CD – they will not forget.”
Seasoned networker number 3
“I couldn’t wait to attend my first ACRA’s and mingle with the team members that had moved into the metro markets. Reminisce about old times and let them know what has happened since they left the market.

Some were so excited to be catching up.
Others, not interested, couldn’t care less.
It was literally a “yeah, yeah, oh really” while scouring the room for someone more important to catch up with.
I usually call them out though by saying ‘so you’ve had enough of me then?’
The best one was the consultant who would visit regularly over a period of a few years  gushing at the content you’re producing blah blah. Walk up to say hello at the ACRAs and this particular one asked what my name was – that’s how much he loved the content I was producing!
Advice: expect to catch-up with some really great people but equally be prepared to try and fail at impressing.
So with radioinfo shouting you the drinks at the end of this year’s CRA Conference please come along and enjoy, but do remember the eyes.
And then just put a few drops of Clear Eyes in to go again at the awards Saturday night.


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