Educational events work! I just returned from a very successful demand generation event in Florida with about 70 attendees representing over 30 companies. Over twenty companies agreed to an assessment in addition to several project related opportunities (just under 75%). The event was mostly covered by vendor sponsorship. Some of the important lessons learned on this type of program:
- Focus on education, not product sales, and you’ll get a much better response
- In this case we invited both prospects and their spouses. This created a much more relaxed setting and social networking function
- The event was held in the evening to allow for bullet two – spouses. We were also able to accommodate doctors’ schedules – important in reaching out to medical organizations.
- Mailers are important, but calls build the attendee list – call, call , call.
- Attrition is greatly reduced by confirming meals and letting them know this is invitation only. Only about 4 people canceled, and they did call ahead.
- Make sure you take the opportunity to set up meetings with companies that can’t make the dinner! This is one of your best opportunities to create appointments with people you don’t know. Again, the call to action is eduction. An update on what your speaker presented.
We don’t have a final count on meetings set up beyond the attendee list, however it’s sure to be strong. This company followed the program exactly as prescribed in my security workshop, and the results are evident.