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Approaching event ROI from a sales pipeline standpoint

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B2B events have greatly evolved from what they have been in yesteryears. They are now exorbitant affairs involving enormous budgets. Event marketers put in a lot of time and effort into creation and execution during the days leading to the event but forget that measuring the impact is just as important. One tangible way of doing so is by calculating the event ROI. Cultivating a pipeline centric approach can throw light on the effectiveness of sales teams. Here are few pointers on how to channel your sales teams and workflows to generate a better return on investment.

Planning the event right:

Make a clear set of goals that stand true to the purpose of hosting the event. Details are crucial. Specifying the type of event, target audience, execs to be appointed for the booths are all critical to the success of an event. This gives the event an outline and can help marketers create a plan to achieve targets. Keep a flexible budget plan so that last minute costs can be taken care of. This is the first step in event planning and will greatly influence on how well the event is executed.

Convert badge scan to pipeline building:

Badge scans on the day of the event can be really tiresome. This can be smoothly converted into a productive experience by arranging mini-meet ups of the SME’s with the target customers. This way the badge scan data can be used as potential CRM data that gives a clear indication of who can become prospective leads.

Nurture existing pipeline:

Acquiring new leads can prove to be more of a challenge than nurturing existing customers. Marketers should, therefore, concentrate on focus on existing leads and pipeline discussions at the event. Treat the customers by scheduling a minimum number of confirmed meetings as primary criteria. Booth spaces and SME allocations need to be planned based on the number of meetings planned.

Choosing the right metrics:

Measuring your event’s success needs to be based on quantifiable data. Based on the goals set, make sure to collate all the metrics that greatly impact the ROI. List down the most important aspects that help you measure event engagement and potential like the number of attendees to the number of prospective leads generated, etc. Make use of the many meeting scheduling software and event technology available in the industry to seamlessly integrate the event data with CRM. This, in turn, helps in easier and accurate report generation.

Anticipate the end result:

It is worthwhile to make an analysis of the long-term effects of the event. Event success should not just be based on the number of leads generated or demos requested. Make a forecast of how many prospects are expected to return for more information and cater to their needs. This may be invaluable to closing deals and should be given equal importance while calculating the ROI.

Post event planning and feedbacks:

It is important to chalk out a solid after-event plan. A strong follow-up plan ensures that prospects are kept warm till they are lured into the sales cycle. Create a follow-up plan that falls into place within 2 weeks of the event. It is very important to collect feedback from them and promptly apply the necessary changes while planning subsequent events.

Any event execution that guzzles up a majority of the marketing budget, boils down to one ultimate question “was it all worth it?” And the answer to this conundrum is where the ROI comes into play. It provides clarity on what worked and what didn’t.

For more insights on B2B sales and event marketing, visit our blog here.

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