B2B events produce more data than many event planners know what to do with. We recommend using the following steps to make your data actionable and to keep the conversation going after your customers have all gone home. They'll help turn your event into the proverbial gift that keeps on giving.
Review the data
A. Evaluate registration totals
Online registrants vs. those that registered on-site: Analyze accounts that registered at the event to understand why pre-registration didn’t take place. Are your event emails not being opened? Is the registration process on your event website clear and easy? You can use your findings to optimize the process the next time around.
B. Look at attendance figures relative to last year’s numbers
Total customers: Are you attracting more customers than you did last year? What is the ratio of total customers in your database to total customers in attendance? What can you do to get those hold-outs to attend?
Total prospects: Again, how successful were you at attracting prospects to your event versus last year? What tactics did you use to entice them and how fruitful were they?
C. Understand your sales metrics
Total cases: This figure will give you a high-level view of the transactional impact of your event. It's put into even better context if your organization has determined an average case price. Do you know yours?
Total new (non-historical) cases: Before your event, decide if historical orders will be booked automatically upon customer arrival or if customers will need to visit each booth to place recurring bookings. We tend to see more customer satisfaction with the former option, and vendors like it because they can focus on new products.
Total buyers: Did any arrounts send individuals without purchasing authority to your event? What can you do to ensure more buyers attend your events in the future?
Leads by sales region, district, and representative: One of the single biggest complaints among trade show attendees is the lack of follow-up from vendors or the host following the event. With that in mind, do you have a follow-up plan for customized lead fulfillment? Identify the stakeholders in your fulfillment process and open the lines of communication before your event to make sure they are all on board.
Look back at the dialogue
A. Analyze conversations
Evaluate social media comments and conversations to uncover potential areas for improvement and ideas for future blog posts and campaigns.
B. Create blog posts
Create blog posts highlighting important points from seminars, and post videos of the seminars themselves. Add photos and videos of attendees, exhibitors, and your staff on your Facebook page and Pinterest board.
C. Share photos
Use Pinterest to collect photos from attendees. You can even gamify crowdsourced submissions by awarding a prize for the photo with the most re-pins. (Tailwind)
D. Share speaker sessions
Post full seminar presentations on Slideshare. Slideshare makes it easy to embed the presentations in your blog.
By analyzing information generated before and during your event, you will gain a better understanding of what worked and what can be improved upon. You also put yourself in better standing with your customers by listening to their words, actions, and requests, many of which can inform adjustments to the marketing and sales strategy of your future events.
In the next and final post of our event marketing series, we will show you how to determine your event's ROI, including simple formulas to analyze your sales numbers. Needless to say, your CFO will be impressed.
So, what statistics are the biggest indicators of the success of your events? Let us know in the comments below.