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So what is SpiceWorld? Is that the movie about the Spice Girls? Nope. In case you’ve never heard about this conference, it’s an annual one held in Austin, Texas, by SpiceWorks, which is the biggest IT community online! There are always thousands of IT pros and vendors; this year, we had a chance to visit globally well-known giants such as Canon, Cisco, and HP. It was a three-day long mix of how-to sessions, networking, happy hours, and parties. Meet our Team! From left to right: Ray – North America Sales Representative, Stella – EMEA Sales Representative, Faisal – Brand Development Manager, Patrick – Product Development Lead This was the PDFelement Team’s first time at SpiceWorld, and we were a proud Chipotle sponsor. At this conference, we wanted to share our passion for creating simple software solutions for life’s everyday challenges through multimedia, utility, office or mobile applications with all of you! Pre-SpiceWorld In my experience, going on a vacation takes a lot of planning and preparation, especially when it comes to packing. Will I need that extra sweater? Are you sure I won’t need these extra socks? But going to a conference required planning and preparationon the next level. The team spent the week before the conference in a frenzy, putting together presentations, making trips to IKEA, and gathering the necessary supplies for our booth, including the Microsoft Surface Pro that Michael won! Let’s see what our first-time SpiceWorld attendees thought about their experience! Faisal PDFelement’s goal for #SpiceWorld2017 was to really get our name out there. We’re the only PDF solution software next to Adobe that offers enterprise-grade functionalities on both Mac and Windows; we were specifically designed for small-medium businesses and our prices reflect that. My own personal goal was networking. I wanted to meet other IT pros and learn about how they’re leveraging PDF solutions and how they’re improving document workflows at their own offices. Most importantly, I wanted to understand the market for PDF technology and improve our product to suit user needs. I was happy to see that many people came to our boothan d was really interested in trying out the 6-month valuation that we were doing! I thought that the conference was a fun experience. My three main highlights included: 1. Meeting one of our PDFelement 5 users, it was nice to meet a user in real life! 2. Trying authentic Texas BBQ for the first time. The portions were massive and the ribs were really juicy. Look how happy Ray and Patrick are! 3. After watching the SpiceRex wander around the conference, he finally visited our booth on the last day and we got a picture with him! Patrick The vendor I wanted to meet was Softchoice, since they are one of the biggest IT solutions and services provider in North America. We managed to set up a meeting with them at the conference and had a chance to chat. It was cool to meet them in person and pick their brains. Hopefully, there will be a chance to work with them in the future, especially since they are based in Montreal. It would be nice to work with another Canadian IT company. I have to say that our first time attending SpiceWorld felt pretty good! We had the chance to meet a lot of IT professionals anddecisions-makers and talk to them face-to-face. I thought it was very valuable to hear about the technical challenges that they are facing everyday. It felt even better when we were able to show them how our product and services can help their company solve these problems. Aside from the conference, I just wanted to say that the local cuisine was awesome. I will definitely come back to Austin just for a bite of theTe xas ribs and couple of local beers! Ray I must say, I was a bit worried about how our booth was going to turnout, since we were designing the set-up remotely and didn’t have a chance to visit the venue until we had to physically set up for it. I was also curious about what the Spiceworld attendees were looking for at the conference, and hoped that they would be interested in what we had to share. But the backdrop our designers made ended up fitting like a glove and the IT pros that visited our booth were very friendly when I had the chance to talk to them face-to-face. Usually, I handle all of our sales inquiries over the phone or email, and it can be very hard to tell what the other person is thinking or feeling. What I enjoyed most on this trip was the casual culture of Spiceworld and Austin’s BBQ. Overall, I thought that it was a pretty good conference! Stella This would be my first time attending at SpiceWorld and in Austin. Going into the conference, I was really looking to communicate with our potential users face-to-face and listen to their voices, and to truly learn their pain points and business needs. SpiceWorld turned out to be a great place to connect with people, and I was very excited to hear the positivefeedbacks from potential users after I introduced PDFelement. The only thing I regret is not attending SpiceWorld sooner; I hope to see you all again next year! Well, there you have it. Good food, good drinks, and better company. We are very proud of how our PDFelement team did at #Spiceworld2017. It was an exciting opportunity to showcase our products alongside other Fortune 100 companies; we learned a lot from our fellow vendors about their experiences. We’ll be back next year, and we hope you will be too! *Written by Rebecca Chen, Community Manager at PDFelement
In November, the PDFelement team exhibited at iTech Conference in Vancouver, BC. For those unfamiliar, iTech is Canada’s largest IT Infrastructure, Cloud and Mobility Conference that takes place in Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Calgary, Edmonton, and Vancouver. The best part was that it is free to attend, so anyone interested in the field could come and check out the latest technological trends and other cool projects that the vendors have been working on. Our booth was right next to the speaker’s area. This meant that we were in the best location to watch the keynote speakers while speaking with all the lovely visitors that stopped by our booth! It was an early morning, but the iTech team was thoughtful, and had a full coffee and tea bar available for the whole day. After some caffeine, our team was awake enough to smile, chat, and hand out stress balls! Throughout the whole day, we had a blast talking to IT professionals, students, and other vendors and learned about their experience in the field. Favourite Swag The best about part of any IT conference are the gifts that vendors give out. iTech Vancouver was no different! After checking out each booth, we have a list of personal favourites: 1) Suse’s Gecko Soft, cute, and green…a loveable companion for your desk. To receive this special buddy, you needed to ask a Suse representative a question that they deemed meaningful and unique – which must’ve been tough since they’re all so experienced and knowledgeable in the field! 2) ERA’s Recycled Keychains The creative team from Electronic Recycling Association (ERA) were giving away upcycled motherboard keychains! Because they work with local individuals and organization to manage the process of retiring IT assets, they also brought their data destruction machine and gave us a chance to experience hardware destruction for ourselves! 3) Carbonite’s phone wiping cloth Carbonite knows that none of us can bear to be apart from our phone for long periods of time, so our devices collect lots of fingerprints and dust. I stuck my phone wiper to the back of my cell so that I can give it a nice wipe once a day! Favourite display s Some vendors brought things up a notch and brought creative displays to attract visitors to their booth. These definitely worked for us: 1) TerraGo Right across from us was TerraGo, and they set up a pitch and putt station. One of our team members, Ray, got the ball in on his first shot. They were also giving out large cookies all day long. Food and games was definitely a good combination! 2) Geist Geist brought a giant power bar display to showcase their various products. It was definitely a conversation starter. 3) PDFelement Of course, after all the hard work we put into our booth, I am a bit biased when I say that the PDFelement booth was one of my favourites. We had a comfortable, tall table, a beautiful banner, live demos, and stress balls. We were also giving away an iPad Mini! We just wanted to take a moment to thank iTech for having us and for making sure that everyone had enough coffee to last us through the day. We also wanted to thank everyone who visited our booth and took the time to take a look at our live demos and asked questions. This was our second conference, so these events are still a new and different experience as we are used to connecting with people over the phone, email, social media, or our forum. Our team agreed that having in-pers on conversations definitely beats online ones! I was constantly overwhelmed by how genuinely interested the attendees were in getting to know us as well as our product. We’re looking forward to connecting more with Vancouver and the community in the upcoming year. Were you also at #iTech2017? What was your favourite part? Drop a comment below! *Written by Rebecca Chen, Community Manager at PDFelement