This is a guest blog post by Lynn Langmade from Certain.
The majority of B2B marketers consider in-person events to be a demand generation goldmine. Yet, they take a lot of time and resources to pull together and proving ROI for in-person events is often a challenge.
What’s great about events is that they allow you to generate a ton of data–buying signals about your prospects. By using this data in your lead scoring model and integrating it into your marketing automation system, you can convert more customers and increase the ROI on your events. Below, we’ll show you how to leverage event data in your lead scoring model and some creative ways to use this data to personalize the attendee experience and post-event follow-up.
Why You Need a Lead Scoring Model
Marketing and sales teams can utilize lead and engagement scoring to develop highly personalized, targeted campaigns for prospects and event attendees.
Think about lead and engagement scoring as every action that a prospect takes on social media, your website, and in-person events. For example, when a lead follows your Twitter handle, shares your content on social media, or clicks, reads or downloads an asset on your website, their lead score increases. Similarly, when a lead visits your booth at an event, or attends your session, the data can be collected by Event Automation systems, like Certain, which also increases their lead score.
Marketing and sales teams can then take that data and begin nurture campaigns based on a prospect’s lead and engagement score and position in their journey.
While there are many data points you could use to inform your lead scoring model, like social media activities, website visits, email engagements and events, for now, we’ll focus on event data.
Establish a Lead Scoring Methodology that Incorporates Event Data
When you incorporate a variety of data sources, including event data, into your lead scoring model, you’ll do a much better job of inferring how far along a lead is in their buying journey and whether they want to purchase a solution in the immediate future.
Consider the following components in your lead scoring model:
- Lead Fit: How well does a lead correspond to the ideal profile sales and marketing have agreed on? Is the company the right size? Do they generate enough revenue? Do they use technology that complements your technology?
Event registration, real-time polls, and event surveys are excellent ways to capture attendee data at events and leverage that data to determine lead fit and adjust your lead score accordingly. So, in your registration process at the next event, have fields on your registration page like job title, company name, and company size to give your sales and marketing teams more granular knowledge on your attendees.
- Lead Interest: How interested does a lead appear to be in purchasing your solution?
You can infer a lead’s interest based on their demonstrated behavior. Has this person followed you on social media and shared your articles? How many times have they visited your website? Have they downloaded a whitepaper or report? Did they submit a “get more information” request? What’s the extent of their interactions with you at your events?
If a lead requests a product demo at your event, once this request is recorded in your event automation system, it can trigger a notification within your company’s CRM system so that sales teams are notified to follow-up with this prospect and schedule a client meeting or dinner while your event is still taking place. Talk about taking advantages of lead scoring in real time!
Use Event Data to Create Personalized Experiences for Attendees
You’ve invested a lot into your event, why not help your attendees get the most of the event by personalizing their experience?
That’s where event data comes in. Knowing people’s job title, industry, interests, and history with your events, and their lead score, you can send personalized notifications through your event app or targeted email campaigns, highlight where prospects should start in their event journey, and guide attendees with advice on specific content and recommended sessions they should check-out based on their interests.
Use Event Data for Personalized Outreach and Timely Follow-up
We all know that personalized messaging drives higher results. A recent study by Experian shows that personalized emails have a 29% higher unique open rate and 41% higher unique click rate, so the more personalized your subject line and messaging for targeted personas, the better your conversion rate.
You want to capture as much data as you can at events: booth visits, event registrations, session registrations, product demos, and papers downloaded. Once all of this data is collected in your event automation system, the data enables you to personalize and target your prospects and move them along the buyer’s journey.
After all, leads from events are 60 times more likely to convert into opportunities if you follow-up with them immediately, versus leads that are followed up with a day after the event. With this information, you can place prospects on email nurture tracks in real time, and create omni-channel campaigns that convert your attendees into customers.
Let’s say a prospect attends a session on selecting project management tools and software. If your event data – captured in an Event Automation system – is syncing into your marketing automation system, you can set up trigger emails to place session attendees into a particular email nurture track that delivers content focused on project management.
For example, you might send an initial email with a link to a blog on your website about project management best practices, follow-up with a longer guide on how to integrate project management software into your marketing stack, and finally, send an email with a video case study on how project management software increased productivity at an enterprise by 63%.
Translating Event Actions into Digital Buying Signals
By now, you see that physical events produce digital buying signals. Think of the event journey as a map, which begins with the prospect actually entering the event, and then focus on the prospect’s experience. Each physical space has an objective —the booth, demo stations, networking areas. Each time a prospect visits an area – a presentation session, your demo station, they are sending a buying signal. Those signals, captured in real time and fed directly to marketing automation, enable you to provide an amazing event experience and lead your prospects and customers through their journey.
Overall, lead scoring and engagement scoring are important for marketing and sales teams to understand. By utilizing these scores, you will know when, and with what asset or information to send leads based on their location in the buyer’s journey. So use these tips, alongside fully integrated marketing and event automation systems to understand lead scoring, and convert more leads.
Lynn Langmade is the Director of Content and Marketing Communications at Certain Inc, an enterprise event automation provider. Previously she worked at Satmetrix and InsideView developing content strategy and award-winning social media campaigns. Prior to InsideView, she was a Lecturer at the University of California Davis, where she received her doctorate in 2010 and taught written communication.