The Need for Intelligent Event Marketing Strategies

Nearly every aspect of business has been improved by technologies that offer superior access to data, as well as tools that leverage data to shape decisions, execute and measure results. Marketing has not been excluded, yielding improvements in efficiency, effectiveness and measurement. Marketing and advertising technologies provide access to superior information about customers and allow for precise targeting of prospects. Data can be integrated for planning and CRM management, and used to plan campaigns across multiple outlets.

These technologies serve a broader goal of managing the most sophisticated marketing processes:

  • Data-driven branding campaigns
  • Complex analytics driving precise targeting of advertising placements
  • CRM software and services managing sales efforts

However the laggard in sophistication and technology is how companies address their "Event Marketing Strategy".

The Significance of B2B Event Marketing

It is important to differentiate between event marketing that is focused on building a consumer brand and industry events that are crucial to business to business (B2B) marketing. Sporting and entertainment events receive huge allocations of consumer marketing budgets with a very sophisticated understanding of audience. Industry events are often an equally critical part of building a B2B brand and accessing customer prospects in-person, but most firms lack the tools and data to reach the right customers or plan and measure brand building through these events.

The concept of actually creating an Event Marketing Strategy, or superior “Event Intelligence”, is often overlooked by even the largest companies that market to other businesses despite the fact that 14% of B2B marketing budgets are spent on in-person events. Chief Marketing Officers typically do not dedicate enough time and thought to their event strategy, and there is rarely a senior member of the team who is designated “Head of Event Marketing”. Often, events are relegated to an event manager or are a line item that is poorly integrated into overall advertising spending.

The sophistication and prioritization of industry event marketing must change…and certainly can change. With a higher level of data gathering that is specific to each industry, combined with tools to manage and supervise integrated event activity for firms that attend, host, and sponsor events, businesses will soon be able to make decisions using a superior level of Event Intelligence.

Achieving an Event Marketing Strategy

Elevate event marketing to a senior level within the organization – planning at senior levels and reporting that gives the manager the tools to make informed and efficient decisions:

  1. Elevate event marketing to a senior level within the organization – planning and reporting that gives the manager tools to make informed and efficient decisions.
  2. Develop an event marketing strategy – not just tactics that might follow last year’s event activity, but a plan that is based on data and is consistent with firm’s overall marketing strategy as well as measurement of other techniques.
  3. Establish event marketing goals that are quantifiably definable and measurable.
  4. Differentiate between business development objectives and brand building – and shape planning, expectations and measurement by these parameters separately.
  5. Understand how event hosting can drive customer revenue and how to efficiently curate the best guest lists based on data and broader industry reach.
  6. Collaborate with external resources, partners, and sponsors to broadly promote events - with clear expectations of deliverables for each collaborator.
  7. Manage all staff event attendance (sales team and everyone else) with a common set of goals, tracking, and measurement – integrated with hosting and sponsoring.
  8. Incorporate event data with CRM and other sales efforts for better targeting and monitoring results.
  9. Integrate sponsorship with other advertising/brand building campaigns and plan ad spending budgets using a consistent set of metrics, measurement, and ROI.

Until now, event technologies have failed to help firms to build and manage a comprehensive, data-driven Event Marketing Strategy. Most tend to focus on operations (logistics planning, online ticket sales, registration tools, etc), and almost none can address the specific marketing objectives of industry participants.

Function4

Function4 is a platform and software solution that delivers a comprehensive tool set to help your firm create, execute, and measure a data-driven Event Marketing Strategy – integrating hosting, sponsorship, and event attendance, with a focus on your industry and the relevant data and metrics.

Learn more about how your firm can begin using Function4 today.