Is RISE worth it?
Unless you are part of the prestigious Alpha program at RISE, tickets, like nearly all events, cost money. You are a small start-up with a limited budget. Is it worth going to? Based on our experience last year, and our experience at a number of similar events, here are some thoughts.
It all depends on what you want out of it.
'It's all about the networking' - yes, there is good networking to be had, but to what end?
Sales? Most of your fellow attendees will also be start-ups, so unless you are selling to them then it is unlikely you will get sales. This is really important to note, because many of the exhibitors truly think they will sell loads at RISE. Not gonna happen.
Investment? There are many investors there, so it is a good place to put your product and company on display. But don't expect to spot the investor - they often wear non-investor tags so that they don't get hounded. So make sure you treat well every visitor to your stall, no matter how abrasive they are (not that I'm saying some investors are abrasive...)
Inspiration? Some of the start-ups you see will blow your mind. There are some amazing companies out there, and being able to mix with them is a great privilege. Go and talk to as many as possible, you generally won't regret it.
Talent? A lot of these start-ups will fail, that's just the nature of things. Find some good people at RISE, stay in touch, and onboard them later if you can.
RISE is great, but it is not, on the whole, a place to do sales. Once you understand that, then you'll get a lot more out of it than you would otherwise.