Events are becoming a bigger piece of the marketing puzzle for companies, and it’s no surprise why. Unlike other forms of marketing (email, social, blogging, SEO, etc.), events are the best way to actually meet and engage with the people that matter most to your business, in person. The popularity of inside sales, particularly in tech, means most salespeople never have to leave the comfort of their desk. But one thing that hasn’t changed is the impact of a human interaction and an event provides the forum to help sales close faster and foster deeper relationships with the customer. If you haven’t incorporated events into your marketing plan, or are a marketer trying to convince your boss to provide budget in this area, here are our top 5 reasons why they matter:
1. Reach your target audience
This point doesn’t require much explaining. What could be better than having the people you want to purchase your product or service all in the same space?
2. Control the content and agenda
Instead of attending a conference or speaking at someone else’s event, you control every aspect of the agenda. This means more personalized content that caters to your audience’s specific needs.
3. You own the guest list and follow up
Some conferences may share attendee details, others may not, others may require you to even pay for this info (how gauche!). When you host your own event, you know exactly who you’re inviting and there are no rules on following up with them. Of course, don’t spam, exclude unsubscribers, and keep your follow up short and sweet.
4. Build a tighter relationship with your sales team
Marketing should own the budget for events, but marketers need to work closely with sales to be able to pull off a successful event. Sales knows their customers and prospects really well -- their intel can help inform marketing’s buyer personas. It’s a relationship that needs to be maintained and cared for, much like that fickle fiddle leaf fig plant in my apartment.
5. Better manage your budget and spend
Instead of blowing your budget on attending, sponsoring, and presenting at a few large conferences a year, events hosted by your company let you better control your budget and get a higher return than simply having a booth at a large conference with hundreds of other companies doing exactly the same thing.
This isn’t to say you shouldn’t attend these conferences -- they very likely attract the people you want to target, but it’s about what you do when you’re there. Is it worth it to spend $100K on a sponsorship or using a quarter of that spend to host a fun happy hour near the conference.