Events are a powerful tool for generating sales leads, whether they are in-person or virtual. With 60% of people in leadership roles agreeing that events are a critical marketing channel for reaching company goals, the power of events shouldn’t be overlooked.
However, event marketing can be challenging, as there is often a lot of competition, with many businesses vying for the attention of attendees. To help your company stand out from the crowd, we have put together ten tips to maximize lead generation at events.
One of your main goals for attending the event may be to generate more sales but don’t let that cloud every interaction. It’s important to make genuine connections with attendees. Building relationships with your customers can help improve customer loyalty, result in referrals, increase trust and credibility, and much more.
This may seem obvious, but many companies overlook this essential task. Whatever your goal is, to create brand awareness, inform, or sell, you need contact information.
Capturing attendee data can look different depending on the event. A drop box for paper business cards only works at in-person events where everyone carries business cards, while a registration link is unlikely to be clicked by everyone.
Instead, make data collection simple by sharing your digital business card. They’ll get to save your company's contact information and then share their details in return, which automatically gets added to your smart contact manager.
This transaction feels more organic and makes contact management much easier for your team when the event is over.
General information about your company and the product or service it offers isn’t going to get the results you’re looking for. Those generalized marketing pamphlets might offer helpful information, but you need to get specific to close more deals. Before each event, spend some time researching the attendees. Learn their problems and craft event messaging to show how your business is the solution.
First impressions matter, and you want to set yourself up for success. Practice crafting the perfect introduction or elevator pitch that leads to a bigger conversation about your company and how it can benefit them.
While some people might come up and strike up a conversation, you're missing opportunities unless you’re actively trying to draw people to your booth. From giving out unique company swag to hosting giveaways or having games, there are many unique ways to grab attention. Whatever you choose, make sure it’s a great conversation starter.
Conferences and trade shows can be long, and for many people, the last thing you want to do at the end of your day is go to the after-hours event. However, these smaller, more casual events offer a unique chance to get to know the attendees in a different setting.
After-hours events are a great way to connect with potential customers, learn more about the event attendees, and get more insight into the industry.
The best salesperson knows a lot about their customers. So don’t forget to spend time asking attendees questions. Not all research can be done ahead of time, so this is a crucial step in learning more about how you can best position your solution at this event.
Most events have social media pages, event-specific hashtags, and maybe even live streams to promote the event. Make sure you capitalize on the attention that is being drawn in on social media and join the conversation. Post ahead of time, letting everyone know you’ll be there, and be sure to document the experience as you are there. Interacting with other event-specific posts is another great way to make your name more visible.
Not every event will be worth the money it costs to attend, so it’s important to know when that is the case. For each event, make sure you’re keeping a close eye on how many contacts and sales were generated from that event.
Use this information to determine what methods helped generate the highest ROI, which events aren’t worth it, and when you need to start attending more events.
You met potential clients and gathered contact information. Now, it’s important to keep you and your business top of mind. Otherwise, the chance of that lead converting drops to almost zero. Within the first week following the event, be sure to reach out to all of your new contacts.
Events have the potential to bring in many new leads, but just attending isn’t enough. You and your company need to make sure you’re making the most of every event to maximize the number of leads you leave with.