A week and a half ago, our intrepid Eastwick colleague
The answer is still a resounding “It certainly can be!” DEMO is a physical and emotional PR challenge. You’re there for one purpose, to garner mindshare from journalists—well, perhaps you also want to get face time with the crowd of venture capitalists that attend the event—but so is every other company (70 of them at this last event), all of them with “market-changing technologies” (as organizer Chris Shipley described them), and all of them led by “brilliant” or “creative” teams.
So why bother? Because it still works. Simple Star was pleased with the results, having gotten fabulous write ups in the San Diego Union Tribune, Network World, Computerworld, TechWeb, and CNET, and more coverage is coming. Best of all, the many introductions made, even brief ones that did not result in coverage, served Simple Star well on its launch tour last week, and will continue to serve it for future PR campaigns.
If you do opt for DEMO, make sure your six-minute demo goes smoothly. The presenter and presentation should come across as polished—journalists like an accessible company spokesperson—and the demonstration should be free of technical glitches. Also, know your targets and track their movements. Outside of the demo, it’s all about connecting with journalists in the pavilion. It’s important to work efficiently and effectively but without irritating the very folks you want to impress. Standard PR, just more frenetic.