Looking for events to grow your business? You’ve come to the right place. The following Guide to Small Business Events lists over 50 conferences, seminars and webinars:
Small Business High Speed Growth
May 9, 2011
Are you ready to position your business for rapid growth? Join the Small Business High Speed Growth sessions to get face-to-face with leading mentors in marketing, finance and business development.
Becoming the Obvious Choice for Your Customer Regardless of Price
May 9, 2011, Online
Focus.com Roundtable teleconference at 11am PT/2pm ET with Niall Devitt, Craig Elias, Melinda Emerson, Susan Payton, Ramon Ray, Deborah Shane, and Ivana Taylor discussing today’s most successful strategies and tactics that will help you find your ideal customer and get them choose you, every time, regardless of price. Topics include:
- How to find and identify your best customer
- Best practices for building solid customer relationships
- Strategies and technical tools you can use to analyze your sales and marketing
- How consumers’ buying habits have changed
- The mindset of a successful entrepreneur
- How to use communications (blogs, articles, etc) to find customers
Leverage Virtual Workers in Your Real Business
Taste of Technology Business Series
May 11, 2011, New York City
The economy has put your traditional hiring in a tizzy. You’re nervous about hiring employees – but you need smart staff now. Hiring consultants and temporary workers can help. Hiring experts who work from home might be even better.
But how do you actually find these experts? What types of work can be outsourced effectively? How do you make it all work smoothly? This Taste of Technology will discuss the tools and strategies you can use to hire, manage and communicate with your new, virtual work force.
Workshop: Secrets of LinkedIn: Insider Tips That Work
May 11, 2011, Garden City, NY
So you’ve built a decent network of connections through LinkedIn. Now what? LinkedIn is a powerful business networking site that reaches over 100+ million users, but how can you truly utilize it to connect with new prospects, strategic partners, and first-rate employees to get meaningful results? In this workshop internet marketing guru Jerry Allocca will work with you 1:1 to show you exactly how to turn your LinkedIn profile into profits, how to connect with the right people, show you the best groups to join, and provide you with a ton of proven insider tips.
Online Marketing & Social Media Crash Course
Multiple Cities & Dates
Discover how you can harness the power of the Internet to get your business found online (in an affordable way), engage new customers with your brand and keep old ones coming back. Deluxe for Business and Sprint are proudly sponsoring these free small business events across six cities in 2011, with the help of host Entrepreneur EXPO and keynote speaker Starr Hall.
May 11 – Chicago
June 15 – Atlanta
July 14 – New York City
August 16 – Los Angeles
September 13 – Miami
12th Annual U.S. Department of Energy Small Business Conference & Expo
May 10-12, 2011, Kansas City, MO
This event will feature plenaries, educational workshops, an Exhibit Hall with over 200 exhibitors/sponsors, as well as business matchmaking sessions. Over 1,600 attendees will represent all levels of federal, state and local government agencies, the small business community, large/prime contractors, minority educational institutions and many more.
The largest civilian contracting agency within the federal government, DOE spent over $25 billion in contracts in FY 2010.
For one day only, a panel of experts and business owners will discuss strategies for managing working capital in the changing economy, and share tips you can use to accelerate your business growth.
The new credit reality requires new strategies for growing businesses. At this one-time event, hear from experts and business owners who have survived – and thrived – in a tight credit market, and learn how they did it.
May 12 -14, 2011, Chicago
unGeeked Elite will cover social media, marketing and branding. This three-day Retreat’s unique format:
* No keynote speakers: unGeeked levels the playing field by presenting you with an influential list of international, national and regionally recognized consultants and authors.
* No Presenters: unGeeked is where you participate in open discussions with “discussion leaders” regarding leveraging your corporate and personal brand.
* Fewer Powerpoints or Prezi’s: Really? Don’t like them. However, if the speaker needs to use one of these tools, they are limited to only five slides.
* More speaker and attendee interaction.
Limited to 125 participants. Note: Anita Campbell, CEO of Small Business Trends, will be speaking at this event.
BizTech [Mobile Apps]
May 12, 2011, San Francisco
Discover the coolest and latest mobile apps. Connect with everyone who cares about the mobile industry and learn what’s going on in the mobile technology world today.
Additional upcoming event:
BizTech [Event Technology] - July 12, 2011
Looking Up in a Down Economy – Secrets of the Inc. 5000
May 12, 2011, Boston
Join Inc. magazine and Salem Five for an inspirational evening of thought-provoking discussion with Inc. 5000 CEOs from the Boston area and Jim Schleckser, CEO of the Inc. CEO Project. Network with fellow entrepreneurs and business owners, hear how these extraordinary entrepreneurs grew their businesses in the teeth of the economic downturn, and gain inspiration for growing your own company.
Rich Doyle, Co-Founder & CEO, Harpoon Brewery
Joe Albanese, President & CEO, Commodore Builders
Lewis Schiff, Executive Director, Inc. Business Owners Council
Ultra Light Startups – Sales for Startups
May 12, 2011, New York, Boston, Toronto
This event will help you develop and implement a sales strategy for your startup. Panelists include:
Sean Black (@SeanBlack) Founder and CEO at SalesCrunch
Kelley Boyd (@msksboyd) Principal at Think Experience
Joe Chin (@JoeJChin) Founder and CEO at SourcePad
Ben Kartzman (@benkartzman) Co-Founder and CEO at Spongecell
Monetize Your Expertise
May 12-14, Philadelphia, PA
Networking expert, business coach, and author Liz Lynch, is hosting this 3-day event in Philadelphia, PA on May 12-14 where she will take you through her 5-step system for maximizing your income by learning how to more effectively position, package and promote your expertise. If you’re a consultant, coach, entrepreneur, author, or speaker, you don’t want to miss this opportunity to work with Liz on your business growth goals and challenges.
2011 Business Growth Conference
May 16-19, Pasco County, FL
At the SBDC at USF’s second annual Growth Conference you’ll learn the strategies and gain the tools necessary to grow your business. The FREE, one-day conference series will tour the 10-county area as part of National Small Business Week. Included in the schedule are town hall meetings with legislative and congressional representatives. This open forum offers you an opportunity to discuss issues impacting your business.
May 16 Hillsborough and Polk
May 17 Pinellas and Highlands
May 18 Pasco and Desoto
May 19 Hernando
May 20 Hardee, Sarasota and Manatee
Constant Contact Get Down to Business
May 17-19, 2011. New York City
Join Constant Contact and Wendi Caplan-Carroll for three days of free events on May 17th, 18th, and 19th! Small Business Week: New York Goes Social. Come learn how to harness the power of digital marketing tools to grow relationships and revenue.
May 17th – 6:00pm – 8:00pm: Let’s Get Down to Business! NY Goes Social Cocktail Networking Party
May 18th – 8:00am – 5:00pm: Social Media Marketing Bootcamp. You’ll hear from the experts with multiple workshops and panels plus one on one coaching from SCORE-NYC.
May 19th – 8:00am – 12:30pm: Constant Contact Social Media Summit. Final day wraps up with three keynote speakers providing you with invaluable insight and information on how to take your Social Media Marketing to the next level.
Mobile Marketing for Small Business: Fact vs. Fiction
May 17, 2011, Online
Discover how to tap into the mobile market and create a presence for your small business on mobile phones. Panelists include Rieva Lesonsky, founder and CEO of GrowBiz Media, Ramon Ray, journalist, technology evangelist, editor of Smallbiztechnology.com, Jennifer Shaheen, President, Technology Therapist, Tim Gorin, Yelp’s Small Business Advisory Council and Navin Ganeshan, Principal Product Strategist, Network Solutions.
How to Use Media to Effectively Connect with Business Owners
May 17, 2011, Online
Getting leads of business owners is no easy task with the constant bombardment of day-to-day advertising clutter. Connecting with business owners now requires a mix of communication channels that surround and engage them through action-inducing media and content. In this webinar, attendees will learn:
• How to combine a mix of communication channels to connect with the business owner• The strategic approach to building awareness for effective lead generation• Specific examples of marketing programs and creative that get results
Birmingham Business Alliance Small Business Summit and Expo
May 17, 2011, Birmingham, AL
The event will kick off with a breakfast and keynote speech from Kevin Schmeigel, vice president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, followed by the announcement of three Recognition Award winners. Then attendees will enjoy morning breakout sessions, a roundtable boxed lunch and afternoon breakout sessions. The day’s events will wrap up with a “Wine’d Down” reception.
Using Segmentation to Grow Your Business & Keep Customers Happy
May 18, 2011, Online
Are you marketing to your customers as individuals? Or do you treat your email list as one big lump of addresses? You could be missing huge opportunities to grow your business AND to create lifetime loyalty with your customers. This webinar will explore the importance of segmenting customers. Guest expert Pamela O’Hara, President of Batchblue Software, will discuss:
Why you must segment your customers
How to get started with segmentation
What are some best practices
Examples of what has worked for other companies
How to segment in an online world
Where social media fits in
Mahoning Valley Small Business Conference & Expo 2011
May 18, 2011, Youngstown, OH
Created for both the novice and the experienced small business owner, the Mahoning Valley Small Business Conference & Expo 2011 will cover the latest trends in small business assistance and minority and women business owners. Any small business owner and entrepreneur, whether just starting to write his or her business plan or very experienced, would benefit from the instructional workshops. Certified small business, MBE, DBE and EDGE businesses will have the opportunity to meet buyers from companies committed to increasing their supplier diversity.
Prepping to Pitch
May 18, June 22, June 30, 2011, New York City
NYC Business Solutions Lower Manhattan Center is proud to announce an upcoming workshop series titled “Prepping to Pitch.” This free series is designed to help business owners prepare to obtain equity financing and will feature workshops teaching entrepreneurs how to pitch investors, understand and negotiate private equity agreements, and find potential investors.
Session 1: Advice for Pitching Investors- Taught by Yao Huang of The Hatchery
Session 2: Understanding Angel Funding- Taught by David Lifson of Postling
Session 3: Negotiating Private Equity Agreements- Taught by Shahmoon & Ellisen LLP
Expect the Unexpected: The Importance of Being Nimble
May 18, 2011, Los Angeles
Disasters can strike at any moment. In business today, it goes unsaid that you should be prepared for anything so that your company can outlast the unexpected. Join Inc. and CDW for an interactive, invitation-only gathering where you’ll hear from Inc. Editor-at-Large, Bo Burlingham and a panel of leaders from some of the fastest growing companies in America. They’ll share their experiences on rebounding after a disaster: what worked, what they wish they’d done differently, and how technology helped.
Empowered Woman Success Summit
May 19-20, 2011, Miami, FL
The Empowered Woman Success Summit “is not your typical ‘women’s’ conference… no rah-rah useless mumbo jumbo. This is about getting practical tools and strategies for building your brand, raising your profile and generating profitable opportunities for the long haul,” says founder Michelle Villalobos. This year’s theme is “Elevate Yourself,” designed to help all professional, ambitious women (entrepreneurs, freelancers, corporate execs, solopreneurs, career-switchers & more) elevate themselves beyond where they are today. The last summit drew over 700 smart, savvy women.
Small Business Trends CEO Anita Campbell will be speaking, on audience-attracting secrets.
Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference & Expo
May 22-25, Atlanta
Rethink your business today at the 2011 Black Enterprise Entrepreneurs Conference + Expo. Hundreds of deal makers are expected to attend all looking to build networks and explore new growth opportunities. Expect innovative sessions, high-powered speakers, and an early peek at the products, trends, and services you’ll need to know about to stay ahead of the curve. You can’t afford to miss this one-of-a-kind power conference.
Monday, May 23 – Washington, DC/America’s Small Business Summit
Thursday, June 9 – Austin, TX
Thursday, September 15 – Chicago
Wednesday October 5 – New York City/World Business Forum
Join Wall Street Journal Small Business Editor Colleen DeBaise as she moderates an esteemed panel of top entrepreneurs for dynamic discussions in your area. Gain firsthand wisdom from these entrepreneurial gurus as they delve into their journeys of launching successful businesses.
America’s Small Business Summit 2011
May 23-25, 2011, Washington, DC
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s annual event — America’s Small Business Summit — unites small business owners, managers and entrepreneurs from across the country to learn, network and discuss common legislative and management concerns. Help influence our nation’s economic and political agenda by advocating for pro-business policies through the Rally on the Hill portion of the program. Register before April 1st for early bird pricing.
Keeping the Promise – California Disabled Veterans Alliance Business Matchmaking
May 23-24, 2011, Los Angeles
The 19th Annual “Keeping the Promise” (KTP2011) Conference, Exposition and Matchmaking Event provides a unique opportunity to meet with disabled and veteran entrepreneurs, May 23-24, 2011 at the Los Angeles Airport Marriott in Los Angeles, CA. Business Matchmaking will be held on Tuesday, May 24, 2011.
May 24-26, 2011, New York City
BlogWorld is the world’s largest blogging and social media conference, and it’s known worldwide for presenting internet luminaries and entrepreneurs, the most popular and knowledgeable bloggers, podcasters and social media marketing thought leaders. This year’s event will feature great educational content, so new media content creators and businesses of all kinds will learn the best tips, technologies and methods for growing their brands, audiences and businesses online.
In addition to learning new ways to hone your content skills and promote your content and brand. Get 20% off registration with discount code SBTVIP20.
Faster, Better, Smarter: How Great Small Businesses are Using Technology to Drive Growth
May 24, 2011, Atlanta
At this roundtable discussion, a panel of leaders from some of the fastest growing companies in ATL will discuss how they’ve embraced the latest technologies to get closer to their customers, make the most of their time and scarce resources, differentiate themselves from the competition, and develop innovative strategies that set the stage for growth.
The Art of Angel Investing: What Investors Look for, and Look Out for, When Investing in Startups
May 24, 2011, New York City
This event is a must-attend for anyone interested in learning more about pitching business ideas, venture capital/angel investing and starting their own business. And for those who are Fordham students or alumni, come cheer on your peers in the final round of the Fordham Business Plan Competition!
Brand Camp NYC
May 24, 2011
Brand Camp: Personal Branding 2.0 Conference is an experiential gathering of business thought leaders, entrepreneurs, innovators and professionals from around the world. Brand Camp University mixes together new media, genius and passion to explore the ideas behind personal branding and how it affects students, entrepreneurs, professionals, organizations and corporations. The Brand Camp conference is a hand-picked roster of change agents and innovative thought leaders who share their stories and strategies. Brand camp is more than a conference it is an experience that will change the way you think about your profession, your life and challenge you to passionately pursue your dreams.
How small business can benefit from collaboration, Openness and Sharing
May 25, 2011, Online
How small business can benefit and learn from the principles of Wikinomics—collaboration, openness, sharing, interdependence and integrity.
New England XPO for Business
May 25, 2011, Boston
Connect, collaborate and communicate with over 10,000 business owners and professionals from across New England at the 3rd Annual New England XPO for Business. This event is the largest and most profitable B2B networking conference in the Northeast, featuring 36+ educational seminars and over 300 exhibits packed with hundreds of business products and services.
The Art of Angel Investing: What Investors Look For, and Look Out for, When Investing in Startups
May 26, 2011, New York City
Top NYC Angel Investors Are Pitched By Several Startups & Award up to $40,000* in Prizes including $10,000 cash prizes and $30,000 of in-kind services. This event is a must attend for anyone interested in learning more about pitching business ideas, venture capital/angel investing, and starting their own business.
Missouri Procurement Technical Assistance Centers Procurement Conference
June 2, 2011, Warrensburg, MO
More than 1,200 government agencies and prime contractors have been invited to discuss their contracting opportunities with interested businesses.
The conference is sponsored by Missouri’s senior Sen. McCaskill, Missouri PTAC, the Missouri Small Business and Technology Development Centers, and the Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies and Development at the University of Central Missouri.
12th Annual Enterprise Council on Small Business Summit
June 6-8, 2011, New Orleans
This year’s ECSB Summit will examine the “silent majority” of satisfied small business customers whose positive experiences don’t translate into vocal endorsements. By identifying these potential advocates, studying what motivates them to communicate to others, and mapping the networks where referrals occur, participants will uncover the best practices needed to drive active advocacy among small business customers.
Marketing Boot Camp: Getting the Right Message to the Right People at the Right Time
June 7, 2011, Itasca, IL
Tough times call for tough tactics, and an intelligent, targeted marketing program – plus the commitment to implement it – is necessary for any business to survive. Fortunately, good marketing doesn’t have to be expensive, it just has to work. So where do you begin?
Lee Zoldan, president of The Simons Group, a marketing and communications firm that provides full-spectrum marketing communications, will give a crash course in marketing fundamentals and share smart, real-world strategies that you will be able to use immediately.
Internet Retailer Conference & Exhibition
June 14-17, San Diego
This year’s event theme is “E-Commerce Shifts Into Overdrive—the Race Is On,” and the event is specifically designed to give e-retailers practical information they need to compete in today’s faster-paced e-commerce market. The speaker roster for the 2011 Internet Retailer Conference and Exhibition represents the largest group of expert speakers ever assembled in online retailing, including: Christopher Payne, VP & GM, North American Marketplaces, eBay; Arianna Huffington; Sona Chawla, President, E-Commerce, Walgreen Co. and more.
Inc. Leadership Conference
June 15-17, 2011, Dallas
The event begins June 15 with a pre-conference reception. The next morning opens on the main stage with a presentation revealing the tangible tools for creating competitive cultures. The day culminates with an awards dinner recognizing this year’s Winning Workplaces honorees — leaders recognized for having created exceptional companies. The final day of the conference will offer additional main stage presentations and more intimate sessions with opportunities for greater networking and education.
140 Characters Conference
June 15-16, 2011, New York City
This event is expected to be the largest worldwide gathering of people interested in the effects of the real-time Internet on both business and “we” the people. It seems like everyone is talking about Facebook and Twitter, but so what? Why do they really matter?
#140conf exposes you to the power the Internet has to disrupt businesses, change lives and create serendipity. You will leave with a fresh outlook on how the real-time Web can be used in your business or personal life to actually do something meaningful.
The New York Venture Summit
July 20-21, 2011, New York City
The New York Venture Summit, presented by youngStartup Ventures is the premier industry gathering where cutting-edge startups meet top venture capitalists, angel investors, Corporate VCs and investment bankers.
Whether you are an investor seeking new deals, or an emerging company seeking capital and exposure, the The New York Venture Summit, is one event you won’t want to miss.
Vertical Response 2011 Take Action User Seminar Series
Multiple Cities & Dates
June 23, 2011 – Chicago
September 30, 2011 – Denver
The Vertical Response 2011 Take Action User Seminar is designed to educate you about email marketing in the age of social media. Complement your attendance with a one-on-one email consultation and get the chance to take what you learn and immediately put it into action. Join Smallbiztechnology’s Ramon Ray in New York City and get $10 off early bird registration at this link.
2011 Creative Freelancer Conference
June 23-24, 2011, Chicago
The Creative Freelancer Conference, presented by HOW magazine and Marketing Mentor, is the only business conference for creative solopreneurs, from designers and writers to illustrators and photographers. Whether you’re a veteran or just starting out, you’ll get the specific tools you need to launch, build and grow a successful freelance business. You’ll also get plenty of time to connect with, learn from and share solutions with your fellow freelancers.
Register by the early bird deadline of April 1 and save $30.
Veteran Entrepreneur Training Symposium
June 27-30, Reno, NV
Do you run a veteran-owned or service-disabled veteran-owned small business (VOSB/SDVOSB) and want to work with the government? Or do you want to team with a veteran-owned company but aren’t sure how? The National Veterans Small Business Coalition has created the Veteran Entrepreneur Training Symposium (VETS) to help you accomplish your small business goals.
Unlike other small business conferences, VETS connects thriving veteran business owners with emerging veteran entrepreneurs to expose the knowledge needed to acquire government contracts and teaming opportunities. While attending, also expect to network with government agencies, large companies, and potential clients and customers.
FAA Small Business Opportunities Training Conference and Trade Show
June 28-July 1, 2011, Oklahoma City, OK
The FAA will host its Annual National Small Business Procurement Opportunities Training Conference and Trade Show on June 28 – July 1, 2010. The conference provides a forum for small businesses (including service-disabled and veteran-owned small businesses and 8[a] certified firms) to participate in technical and procurement opportunities workshops. Sessions will link small businesses with program managers, address business issues and concerns, and provide information that will benefit small businesses seeking to do business with the agency.
National Veteran Small Business Conference
August 15-18, 2011, New Orleans
The Department of Veterans Affairs is hosting this event. The largest nationwide conference of its kind, the National Veteran Small Business Conference provides veteran-owned and service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses (VOSBs and SDVOSBs) an opportunity to learn, network and market their businesses.
4,000 leaders from various VOSBs, SDVOSBs, large contractors and federal agencies as well as veterans from the New Orleans area are expected to participate.
Biz 2 Beach
August 19, 2011, Santa Monica, CA
Biz2Beach is an inaugural networking conference of thought leaders, innovators, and trendsetters for an exciting day of exchanging ideas. The “unconference” format of Biz2Beach is unlike most events. Our featured speakers who range in business expertise, will lead four intimate breakout discussions. B2B is presented by CallFire, who will unveil the latest iteration of its suite of telecom services.
NAWBO Women’s Business Conference 2011
August 31 – September 1, 2011, San Diego
The NAWBO Women’s Business Conference is the only event of its kind focused on connecting women entrepreneurs to real business opportunities that deliver bottom-line results. The conference brings together businesses of all sizes from various industries to provide women entrepreneurs with both personal and professional tools and resources to take their businesses to the next level of success.
Affiliate Summit East 2011
August 21-23, 2011, New York City
Affiliate Summit East 2011, the premier affiliate marketing conference, is taking place August 21-23, 2011, in New York City. This three-day conference includes an exhibit hall with affiliate merchants, vendors and networks, and multiple tracks of educational sessions covering the latest trends and information from affiliate marketing experts.
25th Anniversary Entrepreneurial Woman’s Conference, Women’s Business & Buyers Mart
September 14, 2011, Chicago
The oldest conference and business opportunities fair for women in business in the country, this is the premier event for women business owners in the Midwest.
This year’s conference offers women business owners solutions to the current problems they are facing and the opportunity to increase the profitability of their businesses by building relationships with corporate and government buyers, business experts and other women business owners.
The New York Enterprise Report Small Business Awards
September 21, 2011, New York City
The New York Enterprise Report Small Business Awards is the annual awards program honoring the achievements and accomplishments of the 500,000+ small businesses throughout the tri-state area. In its sixth year, the Awards Gala–which sold out in 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 and 2010–attracts more than 400 business owners and executives and is often referred to as “the networking event of the year.” Don’t miss the chance to do business with the “who’s who” of the New York small business community.
Inc. 500/5000 Conference & Awards Ceremony
September 22-24, 2011, National Harbor, MD
The Inc. 500 | 5000 Conference and Awards Ceremony celebrates the revered Inc. ranking of the fastest-growing privately held companies in America. The momentous event brings together current Inc. 5000 honorees and alumni of the list, along with the greater business community, to recognize the remarkable achievements of these companies and the great contributions they have made to the global economy.
The Summit for Women in Business
October 6-9, 2011, Pigeon Forge, TN
The Summit For Women in Business is providing and showing you how to implement the needed strategies and tools to remain competitive and current within today’s evolving business climate. Created by women business owners for women business owners, this Summit is designed for SOHO (Small Office/Home Office) entrepreneurs, independent and self-employed professionals.
Western Mass Business Expo
October 18, 2011, Springfield, MA
As the region’s business publication, The Business Journal of Western Massachusetts believes the businesses and communities that comprise Western Massachusetts should be represented at a region-wide trade show to better promote buying and doing business locally. The day begins with breakfast at 7:30 followed by the Expo’s official opening at 9 a.m. and will feature seminars, speakers, lunch and a high-energy, end-of-day networking event featuring music, food and drink.
To find more small business events, contests and awards, visit the Small Business Events Calendar.
If you are putting on a small business event or contest, and want to get the word out, please submit it through our Events & Contests Submission Form (it’s free). Only events of interest to small business people, freelancers and entrepreneurs will be included.