How to Leverage Marketing Automation for Events

An event’s success depends on more than just good booth placement or an insightful slide deck. Marketers have to drive attendance, create compelling offers, and design a tailored follow-up process for pushing leads through the funnel. Marketing automation technology is the best tool for transforming contacts acquired at events into quality leads, and then into paying customers.

While outbound marketing pushes your messages to an audience, inbound marketing attempts to pull in potential customers with interesting content. B2B marketers spend a lot of time talking about inbound marketing, but that doesn’t make outbound marketing irrelevant. In fact, outbound marketing is still the most effective way to generate B2B leads.

Marketing automation increases that number even more while also increasing customer wins in three ways:

  • Marketing automation enables granular tailoring of pre-show and post-show messaging, making it seem like your solution was made for them.
  • When integrating with CRM, marketing automation provides sales with insight into who attended the event and the type of communications marketing is sending them.
  • Marketing automation provides a 360-degree view of a lead. A prospect that entered your trade show booth may have already engaged on your website or with one of your email campaigns, increasing the value of that lead and helping sales to prioritize leads.

Webinars

Marketing automation platforms that integrate with webinar host providers make it easier to execute the best practices that will make your event a success. These include:

Making Your Branding Consistent Across All Event Communications

Webinar platform providers give you the ability to slap your logo on their generic-looking emails and landing pages, but typically don’t allow for more customization.

Integrating your webinar platform with a marketing automation tool enables you to build out your own landing pages, registration confirmation emails, reminders, invitations, and follow-ups using the same templates you use to represent your brand everywhere else.

Sending Communications Before and After the Webinar

Email isn’t the only way to promote a webinar, but it sure is a good way. Webinars require pre-event communications to drive registrants – typically one or two invitations and an email subject swap; to make a copy of the initial email, change the subject line, and send to anyone who didn’t open the first one.

When you’re inviting people to register for a webinar through a marketing automation platform that’s integrated with CRM, you have your whole database at your fingertips. This allows you to easily segment off characteristics, activity, level of engagement, previous event attendance, and more.

Recording Your Presentations

Follow-up emails have great engagement. This is where the marketing automation integration makes things easier for you – no more list uploads for event follow-ups. Your registrants and attendees are synced right into the platform so you can easily add them to your recipient list when you’re ready to send the recording.

Creating a Registration Page They Want to Complete

You only have a few seconds to capture your contacts’ attention and convince them to sign up. Keep your event description brief, break the main points up into bullets, include an image, and only ask for the information you really need to make that registrant valuable to your sales team. One of the benefits of using marketing automation to create these registration pages is that you can test your data capture limits and identify the breaking point where form abandons spike. Once you’ve input the data, it can be easily accessed by sales once the scoring threshold to hand off to sales is reached.

Scoring the Leads from Your Event

Webinars can help you attract and strengthen leads, but not everyone is ready for a sales conversation immediately after the presentation ends. Lead scoring is a way to rank leads based on a points system to indicate sales readiness and help marketers avoid passing leads over too quickly. Marketing automation platforms track activity and calculate scores for you, then surface leads data in the CRM once the score passes the threshold you define.

Predictive lead scoring uses Artificial Intelligence (AI) to enable you to send only the most qualified prospects to Sales and creating your own rules. No more manually scoring leads!

In-Person Events

Trade shows require their own set of best practices that can be bolstered by marketing automation for greater efficiency and effectiveness, such as:

Letting the Right People Know You’ll Be There

With marketing automation, it’s easy to slice and dice your database by geographical factors or business interests and target only the people you think would find the event valuable.

Providing Additional Opportunities to Network with You

If you’re hosting your own event, then you’re already the star of the show. For trade shows, however, you can offer another call-to-action in your pre-show communications inviting attendees to schedule a personal appointment with one of your sales reps.

Don’t make the offering all about selling—offer them something of value to them and make the benefit clear. Marketing automation can smooth this process by making it easy to set up landing pages that trigger alerts to the right people when the form is completed.

Giving Subscriber Options to Booth Scans

With the latest communication regulations in place, you have to be careful about email permissions. The follow-up message should be sent as soon as possible and include subscription preferences to enable the lead to opt-in or opt-out of receiving certain types of emails.

Nurturing Trade Show Contacts

Don’t let your booth visitors forget about you after the show! Have a follow-up plan in place for each buyer type, offering a relevant resource or inviting them to learn more through a live webinar.

How to Leverage Marketing Automation for Events

Nurturing Trade Show Contacts

Don’t let your booth visitors forget about you after the show! Have a follow-up plan in place for each buyer type, offering a relevant resource or inviting them to learn more through a live webinar.

Sugar MArket Reporting

Over time, you can pull reports within the platform that show how many opportunities and conversions were created from each lead source and identify the most effective marketing channels.

Conclusion

Not only does marketing automation make events more effective, but it also improves marketers’ ability to measure the outcome of the investment. Marketing automation doesn’t just work these wonders for events, however. To learn more about augmenting your marketing strategy using Sugar Market, request a demo today.

  • marketing automation platform
  • Sugar Market
  • webinar
About the Contributor
Roxana Rangu
Roxana Rangu Prior to joining the SugarCRM team, Roxana worked in the marketing field for more than a decade. She loves good content, virtual events, and smart marketing. Though she fell in love with every aspect of digital marketing, video editing, and organizing high-level of experience webinars tops Roxana’s list of favorite projects. When she’s not making magic at her desk, you’re likely to find her painting, lifecasting, or admiring architecture when exploring her way through the world.

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