Remember when events used to take up a considerable chunk of the marketing budget only to have barely any insights? Fortunately for us, that’s become a thing of the past as events now take the cake in generating leads. But to maximize that benefit, it’s crucial for software founders to have the right know-how.
Fortunately, Accelevents Founder and CEO Jon Kazarian has a ton of experience in leveraging events for an outstanding amount of leads. He discusses with B2B SaaS Sales Coach and Host Matt Wolach how to execute events to lead to a lasting relationship with your attendees. Watch and find out how you can quickly generate a ton of leads from a single event!
Podcast: SaaS-Story in the Making
Episode: Episode No. 232, “How an Event Can Generate a Huge Amount of Leads – with Jon Kazarian”
Host: Matt Wolach, a B2B SaaS sales coach, Entrepreneur, and Investor
Guest: Jon Kazarian, Founder, and CEO at Accelevents
TOP TIPS FROM THIS EPISODE
Identify the CTA of the Event
When people organize events, they usually start with deciding what the goal of the event is. From there, they try to choose the best metric to measure the success of the event. Kazarian, however, states that there is a third major step that organizers often miss which is figuring out what the CTA (Call to Action) of the event is.
The CTA is very important because, not only does it wrap up the event properly, it doesn’t leave your attendees confused as to what comes next. Kazarian also suggests using the CTA to get your attendees to register for the next event. If the next event is paid, he recommends giving the current attendees a huge discount as their incentive for registering now. The bonus is that this transforms your attendees into advocates for your next event.
Utilize Live Event Information
There is this notion that event analytics is all about processing the data registered at the start of the event. However, Kazarian states that there’s so much more data going around that isn’t effectively captured by the marketing team. He stressed that we have to utilize live event information to make the most out of our events.
For example, a certain session got a ton of engagement perhaps due to a controversy. This information could be the perfect content to post on your brand’s social media channels. Not only does this spark conversations among your followers, but it can also even hype up the next event. Do it right and you can get last-minute registrations for your event.
Set Advanced Meetings for Attendees
An event doesn’t have to be just a one-time experience for your attendees. And when we say this, we’re not talking about the upcoming event sessions. What we mean is that you can layer your event by organizing opportunities for your attendees to meet in advance.
Kazarian explains that getting the attendees to know each other prior to an event produces so much impact. It also aids participants in extracting the most value from the event. He elaborates that doing this will result in the birth of a community that will keep people coming back for more. And we all know just how crucial a community is to get consistent engagement.
Let Partners Promote in Your Event
Most of the time, the event spotlight is usually focused on the sponsors. And while prioritizing them is actually essential as they are your fund source, it’s not a good idea to leave your partners in the dust. To this, Kazarian insists that organizers should let partners join the event and do their own promotions free of charge
Kazarian explains that doing this triggers a chain reaction of receiving promotions for your events from your partners in return. This mutually beneficial loop will also make it so that you’ll have an additional reach to overlapping clients that you normally wouldn’t have access to. It also just really helps you get the most ROI out of a single event making the budget spent all the more worth it.
Get Human Customer Support
Perhaps one of the most underrated initial investments you can have, getting additional support is a must per Kazarian. While it’s critical that you prioritize the actual preparation and management of the event itself, it’s not a good idea to leave attendees on “seen” when they reach out to you. Having a dedicated customer service team would prevent this misstep from happening.
In SaaS, we all know just how vital responsiveness is in lead conversion and the same concept applies to event turnover. Some organizers tend to use bots to address this but Kazarian states that there’s just a difference when attendees talk to an actual human. After all, proper customer support fosters trust which can lead to the attendees becoming promoters of your event.
Events are Massive Lead Generators
Lead Generation is not usually the initial idea when hearing the word “event” but Kazarian states that this is actually one of the key purposes of events now. Since attendees are willing to provide all the information you ask just to participate in your event, you can get a trove of insights that you can then plug into your Marketing Automation and CRM. According to Kazarian, the data point can even reach up to 1000 and that doesn’t include the real-time data during the event itself.
Events Are About Creating Experience
The first thing that comes to mind when thinking of virtual events is a Zoom meeting with 100+ attendees but according to Kazarian, that’s not going to cut it. Events are all about sharing a beneficial and memorable experience with all of the attendees through proper event planning and quality content. This shared experience will not only market the organizer, it will also keep the attendees coming back for more.
Events Are Networking Opportunities
While this seems like we’re stating the obvious, events help your attendees make new connections. After all, the people attending your event probably work in similar fields or, at the very least, have the same purpose for being present. Communicating this simple fact alone will increase your event turnover rate even before marketing steps in.
[0:59] “And it’s really interesting to see the way that event programming is evolving; where organizers are just thinking much more holistically about their programming across the in-person and the virtual experiences that they’re putting together.”
[10:18] “We’ve seen that marketing ops folks have become involved in about 60% of our purchase decisions, or customer’s purchase decisions, because they are really thinking about events as a big staple in their marketing tech stack and a huge driver of leads; not just at the very top of the funnel, but throughout the stack.”
[13:53] “The best companies that are running events are doing it with a process that you can just plug it in.”
[17:42] “It’s music to my ears to hear you talk about setting meetings before you get there… It really was a big boost to our company before we went to an event. Usually as a, maybe an attendee or an exhibitor, just setting those meetings beforehand was– was critical to making sure you got enough ROI out of the event.”
To learn more about Jon Kazarian and Accelevents, visit https://www.accelevents.com/.
You can also find Jon Kazarian on LinkedIn at: https://www.linkedin.com/in/jkazarian.
For more about how host Matt Wolach helps software companies achieve maximum growth, visit https://mattwolach.com/.