It’s that time of year again: AFP Congress is upon us!

This year’s gathering of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (and their partners) takes place from November 21-23 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre in downtown Toronto, Ontario. It’s three whole days of speakers, exhibitors, and guidance geared towards helping your organization achieve fundraising success. Trust us, if you’re in the peer-to-peer business, you’re going to want to be at AFP.

As one of the major sponsors, FrontStream will be on site to provide tips, guidance, and some adorable Frank piggy banks (of course!). Plus, we’ve got a few surprises up our sleeve – keep an eye on our Twitter and Facebook to see what we’re getting up to at AFP!

Before you head to the convention centre, it’s important to get everything in order and be ready to make the most out of your conference experience. We’ve got a few tips to help you do just that:

1. Have business cards handy

Business cards are great to exchange with new acquaintances, and they look super professional to boot. Check to make sure the current contact info on your business cards accurate. Also, carry a few more than you think you’ll need – you never know how popular you might be on the trade show floor!

2. Keep your phone charged

There’ll be areas on site where you can give your mobile devices some juice, but it’s wise to begin the day on a full charge. Be mindful of battery-draining apps on your smartphone or tablet, and watch that energy bar! It’s a smart idea to bring along a portable battery pack, just in case your phone begins to die in the middle of a vital keynote and you can’t get to a charging station.

3. Drink water, eat healthy food, and sleep

With so much to do over three days, it can be tempting to skimp on sleep and overdo it on coffee to make up for it. Unfortunately, this will only cause a major crash later – same thing if you choose to subsist on sugar and carb-y snacks. Even if you don’t have much time, try to drink plenty of water (get a reusable bottle rather than buying plastic ones!), eat healthy food and snacks (fruit and vegetables are key), and pick at least one night where you hit the hay at a reasonable hour. Your body and stamina will thank you!

4. Network

One of the best possible reasons to attend AFP Congress is to meet new people, talk to potential mentors, and get insights from experts. Reach out over social media to other AFP attendees and set up some coffee dates or brief “get to know you” meetings. Doing it digitally will take away some of the shyness that comes with approaching people in person, and you’ll be able to get a better handle on your schedule. (Oh, and don’t discount networking after AFP Congress hours, either – we happen to be hosting a cocktail hour on Tuesday November 22nd! Stop by our booth at AFP for all the details.)

No matter where you end up during AFP Congress, know that FrontStream will be there to provide plenty of product info, fundraising advice, and even a piggy bank or two.

See you soon! (P.S. #BankOnFrank)

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