Lead retrieval is one of the biggest challenges in marketing. Fortunately, virtual and hybrid events can mitigate some of these challenges. Hosting a virtual or hybrid event allows a brand to create a super event that satisfies attendees while focusing on lead retrieval.
Whether or not lead retrieval is your main event marketing goal or part of a bigger marketing strategy, one which includes thought leadership or brand awareness, a hybrid event or a virtual event can create opportunities for your brand to develop more distinct brand personas, categorize your target audience, and test out email marketing campaigns.
Read on to learn how hybrid and virtual events can supplement your marketing efforts through advanced lead retrieval.
Ways Virtual and Hybrid Events Contribute to Lead Retrieval
Virtual events and hybrid events are great ways to promote your brand in a competitive industry. Brands of all shapes and sizes can tap into the power of virtual and hybrid events for extensive brand marketing and strategic marketing goals.
For the most part, both a traditional event and an online event would require attendees to register online. In registering for the meeting, conference, or summit, live and remote attendees would be providing the brand with their contact information and sometimes additional personal information that can be used as customer data points. Brands can use this data for marketing purposes because the participants consent to its commercial use upon registering.
Collecting participant information from a virtual conference, virtual meeting, or specific virtual sessions allows the event host to see how attendees engaged with the content and formed meaningful connections.
Event organizers can start an email marketing campaign, connect with past participants on social media, and send targeted ads to their IP addresses. No matter how you use these leads, you’ll need CRM software and an email client to help keep you organized.
So virtual and hybrid events allow you to collect this information. Luckily, a powerful event platform like Accelevents can be your lead retrieval system as it has the tools for managing lead data from event attendees. The data can be collected by the retrieval app, exported in different file types, sent to sponsors connected to the event, provided to each trade show booth exhibitor, or sourced for networking breakout sessions. The data can also be synchronized with an integrative CRM feature.
All attendees who register for your event are streamlined through the hosting platform. From there, you can pick and choose what you want to do with their information and how you want to connect with them in the future.
Features to Look for in Event Hosting Platforms
Lead retrieval only makes sense when your event hosting platform can do a lot of this for you. Otherwise, large events could require a ton of manual reconciliation going through the email addresses and participant data.
Try to find an event hosting platform with the following lead capture features:
- Event Ticketing: When you’re in control of the event ticketing, you can create custom ticketing packages perfect for any business type, size, or event style. If you want to raise money or host a fundraiser, you can control the event prices, fundraising amounts, and donor packages. User and payment information is stored for fundraising events, and users can enable push notifications to stay on top of bids. Ticketing pages can be combined with raffles, online donations, silent auctions, text-to-give campaigns, and fund-a-need.
- Ticketing Scanner and Check-in: The ticketing scanner app syncs registration and check-in so you can avoid duplicate check-ins. The ticket scanner is great for physical events and can still be integrated with those online attendee check-ins. Ticketing sales can be made online or online while at the physical event portion. All sales and check-ins update with the app instantly.
- Reserved Seating: Reserved seating allows individuals to check-in to a specific event, so you can see which sessions your online participants are interested in. Collect data on the types of sessions that each attendee was interested in attending, and use exclusivity marketing to drive sales. To build attendee engagement and create a unique hybrid experience, you can enable reserved seatings on popular speakers and require a fee for entry into that session.
- Agenda Builder: Building an agenda through the event platform allows for more data collection points. With an agenda builder, you can add breakout sessions with session tags to enable attendees to filter and sort the sessions they want to attend. With this data, you can monitor popular sessions, monitor session interest by attendance, and set caps on session registration. Promote keynote speakers, a notable presenter, a breakout session, panels, and main attractions. Synchronize this information with social media and see how people engage with your event and brand during the event.
- CRM Integrations: A good virtual platform will integrate other tools that you use for marketing, business continuity and growth, and sales. Accelevents hosting platform integrates with Hubspot, Constant Contact, Active Campaign, Google Analytics, Pipedrive, Facebook, Mail Chimp, stripe, Square, Zapier, Salesforce, and Quickbooks ease of access, no matter your needs. Customer data points can be quickly and easily transferred to your CRM for enriched data, and you can better understand the value of the leads captured from your event.
- API Documentation: Accelevents event technology has API documentation that can be integrated into your current systems so that you don’t have to always reinvent the wheel. Build a fundraising platform with the support of an already built API so you can access your data how you want.
- Event Website Hosting: An event website with customer support like live chat and contact options allows more individuals to connect with your event. Whether these inquiries lead to registrations for the event is not relevant, as you can collect their contact information as leads straight from the website.
Using Leads Captured for Future Marketing
The leads and event data captured from your successful event can be used for extensive marketing purposes, but you have to be smart about it.
Commonly, event marketers will send out follow-up emails thanking attendees for being at their event. Don’t overload your new leads with generic emails, and keep it simple. You’ll want to send engaging emails that tap into the unique brand experience of select attendees and customer avatars.
Virtual event software will collect additional data about each attendee. This includes the sessions that they attend, vendors they were interested in, and demographic information. Draw out your target audiences and customer avatars to lose potential leads by being too pushy.
If you are running a fundraiser, then you can connect with those who make certain donation amounts. Link up their information with your Constant Contact or Active Campaign account so that you keep these donors on your radar for future events.
Event professionals who used social media in their event marketing plan can integrate Google Analytics and Facebook to see if there were increases in engagement. These connections are leads and potential customers, so be sure to reach out to them and thank them for their engagement in your way.
While event planners might be eager to analyze the ticket sales amounts, these numbers only tell one part of the story. You’ll need to seek feedback from your past attendees so that you can gauge their authentic event experience, whether they would be willing to attend a future event, and more.
Be sure to plan out your lead capture plan when developing your initial event marketing strategy and during event promotion, as you might need to plan out useful integrations, settings, surveys, and ways of targeting potential attendees.
Hosting a Successful Virtual and Hybrid Event with Accelevents
Even if you feel like you’ve run the “best” event, your event is not successful if you cannot use the data collected for future uses. Virtual and hybrid events are ideal for marketing goals and lead retrieval and should be incorporated into marketing strategies early on.
Event professionals should take advantage of powerful software like Accelevents, which can collect precise data on attendee interests, donor dollar amounts, and check-in details.