Xerocon London - observations, tips and tricks for newbies

We are in the midst of the 2022 Xerocon Season, and it has taken a month for the NextMinute team to feel grounded after the whirlwind of our very first Xerocon in London.

Here are some observations and take-aways from some Xerocon newbies:

Set an Action Plan for before & after the event

  • If you are attending alone, it can be hard to tick all the boxes. Set a plan of the talks you must attend, the talks you would like to attend and the exhibitors you must talk to and the exhibitors you would like to talk too. Focus on the must-do’s first and the want-to’s second.
  • If you are attending as a team, divide and conquer. Allocate champions to specific topics, talks or exhibitors.
  • When you get back to the office, allocate time to follow through with all the good ideas you learnt over the 2 days. Don’t lose the momentum.

It is a Community Event

  • Xero only hosts events for Accountants & Bookkeepers, their Partner Community is still their top priority.
  • Xerocon brings over 2000 like minded industry professionals into one room, plus over 50 Xero App partners.
  • At Xerocon, the other attendees are not your competitors, they are your industry colleagues. Network and talk to people.
  • The App Ecosytem is well connected. If you are attending Xerocon alone and you need a buddy, the app providers will know someone to introduce you too. Also, if you are looking for a specific product they might have another app they recommend.

Dedicate time to talk to the App Ecosystem

  • There are over 50+ Xero app partners that attend Xerocon. NextMinute was able to engage with over 10% of attendees in London and was nominated for the top 10 Xero App Partners of the month!
  • App providers don’t get to walk around the room and mingle, we need to “man the stand”. Spend some time before the event to short list the apps you want to talk and learn more about and dedicate 5 minutes with each of them. Most of them will special offers, giveaways or prize draws as a bonus.
  • If the stand seems busy, you won’t need to wait for more than 5 minutes to get someone one on one, but if you just can’t wait join in the conversation with other groups, they are more than likely asking the same questions you want answers too.

It is all about the People:

  • Breakout sessions including topics like “Tips for providing an inclusive environment” and “How to build a culture of well-being” show that is all about the human element of running a business.
  • Bring along some of the team members from your business. Tickets are quite expensive, but I promise, you will get your moneys worth.

Xero’s main community is still the Accountants & Bookkeeppers, but their target audience is Small Business.

  • The event itself is for the Accounting & Bookkeeping community only. Xero does not run any events for SMEs.
  • However, they showed their support for SME by hiring small local food trucks to help cater the event
  • Xero GO – New Release for sole traders in the UK.
  • Keynotes around the state of the economy with small business and cash flow. On average small businesses in the UK are cashflow negative 4 ½ months out of the year and one of the biggest problems is when large companies are not paying small businesses in time. Xero sympathises and urges the UK government to take effect.
  • There was also education talks to make sure accountants and bookkeepers understand the importance of digitalisation and why they need to be MTD ready. Making Tax Digital – Everything You Need To Know | Xero UK

Sustainability is important

  • Xerocon London was an all-green event meaning they are advising all Exhibitors & Delegates to consider the environment. Leave the paper flyers at home.
  • Deborah Meaden – Deborah Meaden Dragons’ Den investor official website attended to produce a fantastic keynote around looking at the company’s impact on the planet and how sustainability can be viewed as an opportunity or an inconvenience.

Pace yourself

  • It is a non-stop two days, with lot’s of before, during and after parties.
  • Don’t burn yourself out on day one – day two is just as jam-packed and full of useful content that you won’t want to miss.

Ditch the suit & tie

  • Not that many of us still have strict corporate work attire rules to follow, but Xerocon is not the place. Smart Casual with comfortable shoes!

You will need a notebook

  • You will need somewhere to write down all the good ideas and learnings.
  • If you forget a notebook, one of the many exhibitors is bound to have one included in their Swag.
  • Trust me, you will need it!! You will wish the whole thing is recorded and emailed to you.

Take photos!

  • Take photos of the slides you see during the talks that resonate with you.
  • Take photos with your team at the event
  • Take photos with exhibitors
  • Post them socials and #Xerocon
  • Be seen! Were you even there if it’s not on social media?

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