SQL Saturdays and other community events rely on sponsors and you know that you will often get entered into a raffle for a prize in exchange for your contact details and there will be freebies of various types from many vendors but there is more that you can get from visiting the sponsors.
At SQL Saturday Exeter on the 22nd March 2014 we are putting free coffee amongst the sponsors. Yes, it’s a ruse in some ways to put you in the same room as the sponsors whilst your mind is buzzing with all the new SQL learning you have been doing and you are feeling confident and inspired about SQL and what you can achieve.
We need the sponsors to put on the events and the sponsors need us to help put them in contact with purchasers of their wares. It is good for all community events if the sponsors can put SQL Saturday Exeter (or another community event} into their CRM as the point of first contact or the place a decision was made for a purchase as it will mean that when they analyse their data in readiness for next years budget community events will still be important to them and they will spend their money and we will continue to be able to benefit from superb free or very cheap training and learning, networking and down right good fun at next years events
DIRECT CONTACT WITH THE PEOPLE WHO MAKE YOUR TOOLS
For example, I use Red Gate’s SQL Monitor and make use of the graphs to baseline, to see when there are variations to that baseline and to get alerted about long running queries, deadlocks and many other useful DBA information.
I wanted to know how best to use the base lining feature and how best to describe some of the detail I was seeing to none-technical people. He and Jonathan Allen was able to give me some examples and knowledge to improve my capabilities in this area. It was fantastic to be able to discuss the product with him and see where they are wanting to take it.
THE SPONSORS WIN TOO
Obviously the sponsors need customers and that is why they put a large amount of marketing activity into SQL Community Events. They want to put their products in front of the people who will be using them and make sales.
But there is a further benefit too Daniel asked me to show him how I used the tool and what I would improve if I could. I explained that I was having trouble getting the Regex correct for writing exceptions for the alerts for long running queries and I said that I wished there was button I could press to automatically ignore that query that sometimes. He said he would take that back to the team. Excellent, I was able to get a way to improve a good tool to make me work smarter and my experience better
I don’t know if my idea will make it to Production but I hope so. Daniel also said it was useful to see the way users of their software navigated the application and used the features and that that knowledge would help future development
“I’m sure we can make a sale or two on a SQL Saturday – but then, why am I there, and not a sales team? We’ve found it’s more valuable to meet people in the community, learn about their jobs and problems, and search for a gleam in their eyes when we show them our solutions. We take home those first impressions, and the feedback from long-time users, to make our software more focused, relevant, and useful.
And the conversations are always great fun – so come and say hi!”
It’s a win all ways round
WE’LL PUT BISCUITS WITH THE COFFEE TOO AT SQL SAT EXETER!!
Find out more about SQL Saturday Exeter at http://sqlsouthwest.co.uk/