B2B Event Lead Generation: How to Make Conferences Work for You

Event lead generation was pretty different before COVID hit the world; the conferences being held were pretty different from what we see nowadays. COVID has changed how marketers work, and businesses use to deal. Information gathering and meeting clients have also changed for the businesses around the world, it took some time for the events to get used to the new situation, but finally, everything is back on track. Digitalization has changed everything, but the importance of meeting haven reduced; companies still rely on this form of prospecting in order to improve their outreach.

Event lead generation is still going strong as it is one of the major sources of lead gathering; information collected through this method has its own perks. Data collection through this method is trusted data; several techniques are utilized to gather data from audiences present at the meetings. These meetings can be seminars or exhibitions that are organized with the aim of getting all parties on the same platform. Organizing seminars and exhibitions are one of the most profitable methods of data collection for B2B marketing. This article will focus on the importance of conferences in B2B marketing strategies. Article will tech about the methods to organize and ways to carry out successful lead generation at such events.

Event lead generation

Corporations organize events such as seminars, conferences, exhibitions, summits, and webinars to gather prospects. The process of identifying potential clients at such places through several strategies is termed event lead generation. First, the invitations are sent across the market and are aimed toward specific audiences, and once they are able to gather audiences and use these occasions to create brand awareness. Methods are utilized by the marketing department to outreach and make their presence felt during these events. Special preparation is done when an organization aims to join any seminar or exhibition.

The process of prospecting and then information gathering during event lead generation is very easy. Sales development representatives create strategies to make their presence felt, and prospects are selected and listed to be approached by SDRs. They are engaged in conversation and provide thorough detail about the company and the product. Data is collected through different surveys or questionnaires for later. Nurturing process is carried out along with brand awareness to gain more from the audience present. However, doing this physical is pretty different from doing this whole process online. Online the approach is limited compared to the physical meeting, where even demons can be offered to gain the trust of the consumer. Decisions of the decision-makers are influenced by marketers through several tactics.

Event lead generation in 2022

Marketing is an art that comes with practice; you cannot become an expert in marketing overnight. You need to understand the market and trends that are taking over the marketing. The year 2020 and 2021 was pretty difficult for businesses, especially for small business. Now 2022 has brought a chance to thrive again; digital marketing is changing the game for small businesses as they can now compete head-to-head with big competitors. Virtual conferences and webinars are changing the whole lead generation and providing a chance for small businesses to thrive in this area of prospecting where big organizations ruled in the past. Webinars allow interaction with customers while keeping the cost for the event low.

Trends of 2022 are favoring small businesses; advertising departments have to understand the right strategy for customer approach. In the past couple of years, event organizers have been shifting towards online platforms; the reason behind this is the lack of interest among people in physical interactions. B2B clients are least interested in physical meetings; digitalization of marketing has eased up the work for them. While webinars are doing good for small businesses, one cannot deny the fact that event lead generation is not complete without physical interactions. More than 80% of experts believe in the physical conference as a major part of prospecting. So, some of both worlds are required to run businesses smoothly.

Hybrid events are a thing that provides some of both worlds; these seminars are organized both on physical and virtual platforms. Experts believe that this method of conferencing will surpass both of its predecessors. Lead generation can really improve by utilizing the hybrid method for interaction with clients.

Process of Lead generation at Events

Preparation is essential to make your campaign effective when going to a conference or a seminar. The marketing departments take a long process to prepare for them; they need to consider several things before initiating such a campaign. Following is the whole process segmented into different parts for the ease of beginners. They could learn the method of information gathering at an event by reading it thoroughly. Follow the steps given below for an effective campaign:

1. Planning

The planning phase is essential for an event to be successful; even lead generation requires thorough planning to make it successful. Marketing departments should start planning 60 days prior, so they have enough time to figure out all the important things required for making their campaign successful at the seminar. Following are steps taken while planning.

ICP Creation

The creation of new profiles for customers can help with research improvement; making an ideal profile of the customer assists with better research. Data collection during an event can be better by making a new exclusive profile of the customer, especially for that meeting. Sales development representatives can use available information better through these exclusive lists.

Assigning Teams

Create a special team for the event; marketing doesn’t stop with an event up ahead. Other forms of advertising are also kept going, assigning the task to a special team consisting of a researcher, attendees, sales development representative, and writers. Attendees are the key figure in this team as their expertise can gain appointments for the team essential in the lead generation process.

Outreach Channel

Outreach channels determine the number of audience organizations can reach, out reach ensures the number of people coming for seminars. Marketers can roughly estimate by analyzing their outreach that several channels are utilized for approaching an audience for invitations. Social media platforms are highly preferred for this purpose. Choosing an effective source is essential for better performance.

Outline Approach Strategy

Make a strategy regarding the content that should be utilized during the event. The type and quality of the content should bas on the audience attending. High-end content for an audience with low intellect would result in disaster. Keep content-neutral and prepare an outline of the content that would be utilized for nurturing leads. Offers can create trust between seller and purchaser, which will have a better impact.

Goals Setting

Setting goals motivates the team to work for them and achieve even better. Determine key performance indicators and set goals for the team; setting a goal can provide a clear aim for members of the team. They have a straight direction to work in and get results matching the goals set previously. The event lead generation strategy would work better once goals are clear for team members.

Action Plan

Prepare a plan of action; this will keep team members right on track. Briefly describe steps to be taken during the lead generation process. Integrate goals with the plan of action to give a better idea to the team. Integrating both would keep them updated regarding their performance during the seminars.

2. Content Preparation

Planning provides a plan of action, which is essential to keep everything on track. After completing the planning phase, a special team for the event should focus on the preparation of content. Not one but several kinds of content is utilized for brand awareness and nurturing clients. Social media posts, blogs, pamphlets, landing pages, and handouts are utilized for approaching clients and creating brand awareness.

Theme Selection

The first step for content preparation is theme selection; theme selection isn’t a hectic process because events mostly have their own theme and marketers just have to present it uniquely. Uniqueness is something the client searches for; selecting a unique theme can reflect positively upon the while lead generation campaign of the organization

Choosing Information Material

Lead is different in the stage of qualification; each stage requires specific information for nurturing. Selecting material for each stage is essential. Research done to gather data regarding attendees will help with selecting information material. After thoroughly researching prospects, create a theme that reflects their nature.

Email Crafting

Crafting emails require great expertise; in preparing templates for the event lead generation outreach. These emails will be utilized for outreach. Making an attractive email template will allow your marketing department to capitalize on them.

3. Outreach

Outreach should start 12 days before any event; the importance of the function can even increase the time required for outreach. Outreach is an essential part of lead generation. Reaching out to the consumer in the market allows you to gather information about them and reach out to customers to create brand awareness for the event. Content created is utilized through the channels selected in the planning stage for outreach.

Research Prospects

Seminars and conference organizers don’t provide content information regarding the attendees of the event. For event lead generation, contact information is essential. Name, company, and title are provided, but the contact information is crucial to make your work successful. CRM, social media, and other methods are utilized to gather contact information of B2B prospects

Outreaching

Once contact information is gathered, now it is time to outreaching for lead generation. A sales representative has to do outreach with the purpose of creating a brand impression. Let the audience know that your brand will be there at the conference. Buffer them and create an image of your brand through different outreach channels at your disposal.

4. Event

Having an agenda is essential for event lead generation. This is the day marketers were preparing for; during the moment, there are several things to be taken care of. Information gathering and nurturing are to name a few. Utilize all tools available to make your campaign successful.

Outreach Continued

The team placed for outreach should be working throughout the conference. Their job is to arrange a meeting with people present and those who are not part of this event. Keep sending them content to influence their behaviors. Try scheduling one on one meetings to have better gains from the whole strategy.

Remainders

Those who have missed the meeting, send them the remainder and reschedule the meeting if they show interest. Send reminders to those who have meetings up ahead. Competition is active to improve event lead generation; you must play actively with the team to create quality leads.

Future Plans

After a successful meeting, give them your future plan, arrange a future meeting to keep their interest in the organization, and push them further down the sales funnel.

5. Follow-up

Follow-up makes for successful outreach, giving an impression to the client that you care personally about them. Provide them with a soft spot for the organization. Follow-ups are important for successful event lead generation and to keep your memory fresh in customers' brains. They won't convert by themselves. Efforts on all ends are required to convert them successfully.

Conclusion

Gathering prospects is essential for the organizations; they rely on the customers, and the trade is made by them. Revenues are generated through sales; however, customers don’t come knocking on the door these days. Companies have to make efforts to approach customers to gain their trust and create a credible image of their company. Events are one of the best ways to successfully win consumers' trust; event lead generation is viable for a successful trading year.

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