People buy from people. Even though modern marketing is becoming more and more digital, the need for personal connections and interactions in our digital world is clear, and event marketing is still seen as a top trend. Events are a key opportunity to build relationships with existent and prospective customers, by offering that personal touch that digital can often lack.
Take a look below at 6 reasons why events need to be a part of your B2B marketing strategy…
- Brand awareness
A brand is one of the most valuable assets you can have. It is much more than a logo, product or website – it’s how people perceive your company, how they feel about it and why they support it, meaning a well-known brand is something every business should aspire to.
Brand awareness is an essential foundation to acquire costumers, as it helps keep your brand top-of-mind with your audience and drives their decisions. If someone knows your brand, they will become more comfortable with it and ultimately be more likely to buy from you when choosing between you and a competitor.
Trade shows are one of the best ways to raise brand awareness among industry professionals and key decision-makers, providing you with the perfect platform to communicate and convey the value of your product or service.
As well as taking a stand, there are also other advertising and sponsorship opportunities that are sure to leave a long-lasting impression in the mind of your audience. Some tips to get it right are to create eye-catching graphics that engage the audience, place your brand and message strategically throughout the space and include social media information for potential buyers to find you online (the key to a trade show is achieving residual sales well after the doors of the exhibition are closed!).
- Lead Generation
When it comes to the benefits of events, this is one of the biggest. Major trade shows have very high attendance numbers and each attendee is a potential lead waiting to be captured.
A visitor will attend a trade show already pre-disposed to purchasing products and services that will satisfy their needs, so all you need to do is highlight the positive aspects of your offering to them in order to close a sale.
It is true that not all deals can be closed on the spot, but this means your prospect becomes a lead who you can nurture through the sales process. For deals that you cannot close on the spot, make it clear to them that you’ll be contacting them after the show and make sure to follow up with the people most likely to buy while the event is still fresh in their mind.
- Target Audience
A target market is a group of individuals who share similar needs and characteristics, including buying power, demographics, interests and more. Choosing a target market is important as it helps you to develop effective marketing strategies and direct your resources to the customers who are interested in your offering and have a high potential for sales growth.
Exhibitions are targeted at a specific industry and are designed for you to showcase your products or services directly to your target audience. They are focused on encouraging consumer engagements and are the perfect platform for you to build face-to-face connections – Where else can you find a large sample of your exact target audience under one single roof?
- Networking Opportunities
When it comes to advertising your company and connecting with your target market, nothing can beat networking. Expanding your audience ultimately means growing your business, and events give you a chance to network and make valuable connections with potential customers.
Networking isn’t just a way to source new clients, but also a way to find new business partners or collaborate with other companies. In competitive markets, it is key to have partnerships, and trade shows allow you to form alliances with other industry related companies which can help you enter markets that you might otherwise struggle to break into. Alongside finding what works best for you, events are also a great way to understand how you can help other businesses, through passing referrals or joining forces on a particular project.
- Competitor Analysis
You should keep your customers closer and your competitors even closer. Having a better understanding of your competition will help you gather key information and comprehend your position in the market.
Exhibiting at a trade show is the perfect way to get a grasp on how your competitors work, check out their offering and understand their strategy, so you can benchmark against your own overall success.
Make sure to take a walk around the show in order to identify what other booths are doing right to attract customers, as this will give you an edge when it comes to developing a newer, more efficient marketing and sales strategy. It’s also a good idea to take note of what poorly performing stands are doing in order to avoid doing the same mistakes.
- Personal Approach
Making business is all about connections, relationships and trust. In an increasingly digital world, it is all too easy for businesses to lose that all-important personal touch.
Exhibitions provide a platform for companies to bond with potential or existing customers on a personal level, offering an experience for both the business and visitor that other forms of marketing simply cannot.
Face-to-face engagements provide an opportunity for you to better convey your solutions, personality and values, whilst putting a face to the brand and having a human touch reassures costumers.
Make sure to have conversations around your customer’s biggest challenges so you can fully understand them and demonstrate how you can help solve them!