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Face-to-face events provide a great way for businesses to nurture relationships with existing clients, connect with prospects and raise brand awareness.

Marketing efforts must be relevant and personalized to fit the individual needs of clients or potential clients, and event marketing is no exception. It’s important for companies to explore how to integrate new event management platforms and technologies with their existing marketing automation and CRM systems to deliver personalized event experiences and drive ROI.  Of course, solid logistics are important no matter what event you are planning, as well as great event management, innovative ideas, and, if your budget warrants, state-of-the art technology.

Here are a few tips on using the power of data when planning events:

  • Have a clear understanding of the business reasons for conducting your event.  Clear objectives will enable you to determine the right format and measure the success of the event.
  • Review the types of relationships you have with selected attendees and where they are in the influence and/or decision-making process for their company.
  • Tailor the event and promotional content for the types of attendees you wish to invite.
  • Review your current database.  Now is not the time for data silos.  All departments should be a part of this process.  This will provide insights into the value of your event.
  • Determine what data you would like to capture at the event and how you will do so to optimize your follow-up.  This could include social “listening”, event surveys, target messages, gamification, and/or mobile apps.
  • Maximize event value for all stakeholders in your company.  Your event data can go a long way in determining future marketing initiatives.
View the process as a journey.  Start tactically and plan to proceed incrementally. Be patient and realize that mastering techniques to prove ROI is not something done in a single quarter. Each attendee has his own agenda, priorities and social behavior.   

By focusing on your attendees, you will be able to optimize your messaging before, during, and after events. With the right combination of tools, you can learn much about your attendees and translate this on a broader scale into successful sales and marketing campaigns in the future.