Walk This Way! Tried and Tested Strategies To Skyrocket Foot Traffic At Your Next ConventionSep 23, 2023
By Avetis Ghazaryan, Founder and Marketing Ambassador at Growth Hunter
If there’s one thing we’ve heard in our Growth Hunter community discord, it's that conventions are either a time sink to the bottom or thrive to the top. They’re a mixed bag of outcomes.
But what if it didn’t have to be that way? What if every time a convention was on the horizon, you found yourself gearing up for your new norm: an increase in foot traffic, quality conversations and sales?
Exciting, right? But how?
I’ve tried and tested many strategies within my time in the SaaS marketing world. Here’s what I learned actually works, so you don’t have to go through the ringer like I, and the rest of our community, did!
Step Up Your Pre-Game.
For larger conferences, you know the ones where you expect to make a huge impact; invest in building a comprehensive landing page specifically for your presence at this conference, with an incentive to book as a strong ‘Call to Action’ to finish it off.
Did you know e-mail marketing is 40x more effective than social media? This isn’t to say don’t post your presence at upcoming conferences all over social media; that’s vital too, but utilize the power of email marketing to spread your word.
Run an engaging 3-week email marketing campaign to drive incentives to reserve their spots.
These may include exclusive access to downloadable resources, a discount on future events, or a chance to win a valuable prize. Make the incentives enticing and clearly communicate the value attendees will gain by registering in advance.
It’s Showtime! The Event’s On.
You’ve done the pre-gamming, and now it’s all come down to this. You’ve talked the talk all over your outbound marketing channels, and now it’s time to walk the walk. It’s showtime.
Here are the key things to keep on top of, or provide, throughout the duration of the event:
Ensure SDR Venue Coverage
Ensure your SDRs are actively engaged with the attendees throughout the entirety of the conference venue at all times, not just hanging around in or near the booth.
Think of it this way – they need to talk to every person at the convention. From my experience, just sending SDRs out and having them actively engage has helped generate solid sales opportunities and build a robust pipeline.
Encourage them to strike up conversations, share insights, and distribute redeemable promotional materials while keeping an eye out for potential leads.
See it hook, line, and catch. Your SDRs need to head out fishing if they want a catch. Nobody gets a successful catch unless they hop in the boat. But what about the bait?
In this case, the bait is something like a redeemable gift card to be claimed at the booth. If the lead agrees, the SDR walks them to the booth. After a brief demo, the lead receives the gift card via text.
Utilize External Prospect Outreach
Here’s a task for SDRs not physically present at the conference, all while taking outreach efforts to the next level.
Get them to leverage LinkedIn and cold calls to connect with attendees who match your target audience profile, highlighting the value of engaging with your company during the conference.
If the event organizers provide a list of attendees ahead of time (usually with titles and company names), an intern can quickly identify these prospects, allowing SDRs to focus on this curated list.
Engage With Customer Participation
With new potential customers comes the need to gain credibility. In the competitive nature of a conference, you must execute this fast.
Showcase satisfied repeat customers by inviting them to your booth for "office hours" or brief Q&A sessions. Their presence adds credibility and allows attendees to learn from their experiences, creating a more engaging and informative environment.
Wow With Interactive Sessions and Roundtables
Make it actually worthwhile to come to your booth. Giving away free knowledge is beneficial; it positions you as a leader in the space, thus deepening the relationship with your customers.
Arrange sponsored 1:1 meetings or roundtable discussions where attendees can have meaningful, focused conversations. Leverage these sessions to highlight your company's expertise and provide in-depth demos post-discussion.
Provide Fun Networking Opportunities
Who can say no to a free cocktail? Organize a post-event cocktail party one cannot say no to!
But here’s the catch: in order to get a ticket, they must collect it from your booth. Lean on this by advertising your post-conference cocktail party all over the venue, at the booth, and on social media.
Utilize this occasion to strengthen connections with potential clients and partners in a more relaxed setting, all while simultaneously bringing prospects back to your booth.
Offer Something They Can’t Walk Past
Okay, first it was a cocktail. But who can also say no to a free, well-made barista coffee?
Set up a barista or espresso stand at your booth, enticing attendees with complimentary coffee that you can smell 10 to 20 booths away, creating a welcoming atmosphere for engaging discussions and the opportunity to present yourself in a more casual manner.
Drive Up Excitement With A Live Podcast
You know when you walk past a movie being filmed and you just can’t look away? ‘What’s happening? Oh, this is exciting! I need to see!’
Although it may not be on the level of Hollywood one would expect, hosting a live podcast at your venue makes for not only an exciting event but an opportunity to invite attendees to participate and share their insights.
Feature industry experts and thought leaders to attract a diverse audience and stimulate post-event engagement through the released podcasts.
By implementing these pre-event and during-event strategies, you can optimize your conference participation for enhanced engagement, lead generation, and meaningful interactions with potential clients and industry peers.
So you can turn that pre-conference dread into a thirst for what’s to come!
Hint hint: It’s only good things.
These insights stem from a dynamic community dedicated to propelling high growth for their organizations in the SaaS world.
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