Webinars and virtual events have always been an alternative to live events for some companies, but in 2020 they became a lifeline for many businesses including real estate. During the pandemic, businesses were grateful for technology that allowed them to stay in touch with their customers. Now that the world is finding its sense of normalcy, in-person events are making a comeback. Although many companies are adopting a hybrid model for hosting events, nothing can compare to attending an event in person. Being able to network with other professionals, attend exciting and informative sessions given by experts and absorb the energy and passion from other attendees can inspire and invigorate you for months after the event. Benefits of Attending a Live Event You may think you are too busy to attend a live event. You may feel uncomfortable networking with people you don’t know. But consider the many benefits to attending an event in person. Networking – Attending an event gives you the chance to not only meet peers but also industry leaders and other associated professionals. You will share and learn best practices and ideas from others and make valuable connections. Seminars and Workshops – These sessions, led by experts in the field, are an excellent resource for professional development. You can gain insights on industry trends and concepts that you can then apply to your own businesses. Guest Speakers – Many times events will have guest speakers that are top industry leaders who share stories from their own careers. Other times, events may host a panel of speakers that include people from outside the industry who share their own inspiring and motivational stories. A Renewed Passion – It is often hard to see outside your own world when you are in the daily grind. Connecting with new people can encourage you to try new things and remind you why you chose this field to work in. It’s hard to stay in a rut after you have been immersed in an event filled with excitement and positivity! Online Events are Still Valuable Online events, such as webinars and virtual events, still have value for the real estate agent. Typically, these events are only an hour or so which makes them convenient to fit into a busy day. They also allow people from all over the country to join in and comment and ask questions. Online links are often offered after the event is held so you can watch if you couldn’t attend the first time or if you want to re-watch it at your leisure. Events for Every Real Estate Agent No matter what level you are at as a real estate agent there is an event that will benefit you. Local Real Estate Associations – This may be regional or at the state level. It’s a great way to network with other local professionals and get information on local trends. Check out this link on the National Association of REALTORS® website for a list of state and local boards. Brokerage Conferences – Many leading brokerage firms host their own conferences. Check with your home office to find out if your firm is holding one. Major Industry Events National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) The country’s largest trade association, NAR represents 1.5 million members, from all aspects of the residential and commercial real estate industries. Throughout the year, NAR holds some of the biggest industry events.
  • NAR NXT – NAR’s flagship event REALTORS® Conference & Expo, is now branded as NAR NXT. Organizers promise the event has been “reimagined, retooled and reinvented to better meet your needs, bring more value and exceed expectations.” This year’s event, to be held Nov. 11-13, 2022, in Orlando, will feature over 250 exhibitors and 100 guest speakers. Over 10,000 people are expected to attend.
NAR is also offering a companion webinar series that will feature topics and insights from industry experts.
  • NAR Realtor Broker Summit – This annual two-day event features a mix of educational seminars, guest speakers and networking opportunities. Details on the 2023 event will be announced at a later date.
  • iOi (Innovation. Opportunity. Investment) Summit – The event brings together hundreds of PropTech (property technology) leaders, futurists, investors and forward-thinking real estate professionals to discuss and share ideas on how to use innovations in technology in real estate.
Inman   Inman is a leading news source for real estate professionals and others associated with the industry. They host events throughout the year for all sectors of the real estate industry. Here are three upcoming for 2023:
  • Inman Connect New YorkThis three day in-person and virtual event will be held in New York City Jan. 24-26, 2023.. It is geared for the professionals in the residential real estate marketplace.
  • Inman Luxury ConnectThis event is for elite agents and brokers in the luxury real estate market. This 1.5 day in-person event will be held in Las Vegas, Aug. 7-8, 2023.
  •  Inman Connect Las VegasThis event is for all real estate and associated professionals. It will also be held in Las Vegas Aug. 8-10, 2023.
RISMedia RISMedia is a leading media company specializing in news about the residential real estate and home services industries.  They host various leadership, legislative and networking events throughout the year. RISMedia’s Power Broker Reception & Dinner – This event will be held on Nov. 11, 2022 during the NAR NXT conference in Orlando, Fla.  It will honor the achievements of those firms who appeared in RISMedia’s annual Power Broker Report. An exclusive invitation-only event, those in attendance will include “America’s finest residential brokerage firms, owners and senior executives from the nation’s largest independent and franchise firms.” For more information about other RISMedia events in 2023, visit www.rismedia.com/events. Buffini & Company Each year Buffini & Company, North America’s largest coaching and training company, hosts some of the most anticipated in-person and virtual events in the industry.  A roster of exciting and inspirational industry leaders shares their knowledge and strategies at these events on how to excel at your business and lead your best life.
  • Team Leader Conference™At this annual two-day conference style event held in September, top industry team leaders from across North America gathered to exchange ideas, grow their leadership skills and work on building their legacy business. Top industry leaders have the opportunity to connect and brainstorm with fellow leaders and learn what’s working, and not working, for them and their teams.
  • Buffini & Company Master Class™ – At this event, held over a day and a half, real estate professionals gather to network and exchange ideas while being immersed in advanced content. Attendees learn best practices, tactics, techniques and dialogues to generate more referrals, close more deals and make more money.
  • Mastermind Summit®This popular event, held annually, is not just for real estate agents but for anyone who strives to be the best version of themself, personally and professionally. Some of the world’s greatest speakers, thought leaders and personal growth experts have shared the stage with master motivator Brian Buffini, inspiring thousands of people of all ages.
  • The Peak Experience®Buffini & Company’s most elite event, The Peak Experience, is a three-day conference designed specifically for top earners in real estate. Each year an exclusive group of accomplished professionals gather to learn from entrepreneur and master motivator Brian Buffini and carefully selected guest speakers. The content is customized and rich and the speakers are motivating. The atmosphere is ideal for inspiring next-level success in business and in life.
  • Virtual Events – Twice a year thousands of people register to watch a broadcast featuring Brian Buffini’s Bold Predictions. In this broadcast the industry legend shares his insights into the state of the real estate market and strategies to stay focused for success.
Buffini & Company also hosts webinars and Facebook live events throughout the year for its members. For more information on Buffini & Company events visit www.buffiniandcompany.com. Other In-Person Networking Opportunities As a real estate professional you have knowledge to share with others outside of the field. Look for opportunities to network with and speak at other organizations, such as the Lions Club, Rotary Club and your local chamber of commerce. This networking may even lead the way to being offered a chance to speak in front of other industries’ group events. Tips to Get the Most Out of an Event       Do you feel anxious at the thought of entering a room where do you don’t know anyone? You are not alone! Here are some tips to help you work through those feelings and have a great time attending a live real estate event. 
  • Plan Ahead. Look at the event’s website for details before you go to see what interests you and plan on attending those sessions. Map out your days and evenings to maximize your time at the event.
  • Meet up With Others. Some events will even email you a list of roster attendees before it is held. Scan it to see if there is anyone you know or would like to meet. Have a few things you can use in a conversation with that person, such as admiration for work they have done or a mutual interest. Most people love to talk about themselves!
  • Start off Small. If attending a three-day conference seems too overwhelming just go for one day or even a session or two. You might love it so much you will want to attend more!
  • Buddy System. See if anyone in your office or network is interested in going. But be sure to branch out at the event when you go. One of the best parts of attending events in person is meeting and networking with others.
  • Bring Your Business Cards. And when you get a card from someone else, jot down a pertinent note on the back and then email or send them a personal note as soon as you are back home. It’s an instant way to add to your database!
  • Connect With Industry Leaders. Email guest speakers after the event. Even if you did not have the chance to connect with them personally at the event, drop them an email letting them know what you enjoyed about their presentation. The speaker will be delighted that you took the time to do this because many people do not. They may offer to help you in the future. Another great addition to your database!
Attending an event in person is an investment in time as well as financially. But the value of what you receive – making meaningful connections with others while achieving mastery in your business and personal life – will be well worth it!