03.13.20165 min read

How to Host Events that Drive Leads

Miracle Workers, Power Sellers, Closers, Growth Hackers. Sales and marketing people get cool nicknames because driving leads and closing deals is hard work. While I love a good nickname as much as the next guy, wouldn’t it be better if we could supercharge our marketing and sales teams simply by sending out an invitation and having new leads walk right through our doors? Well, it turns we can.

At Eventbrite, I see thousands of businesses using our platform to create events that generate leads and grow businesses. How does this alchemy work you ask? Well, I’ll tell you...

Why events?

There are lots of ways to find new leads, but hosting events offers you and your business some unique benefits that are hard to match with other tactics.

Break through the clutter

The hardest part of finding leads is breaking through the clutter in order to get a prospect’s attention. The average person is exposed to as many as 5,000 brand messages per day (and that’s not including passive brand messages like logos).

Events are a great way to break through those messages. When you host an event you have the attention of a captive audience. The audience can’t put you on mute like they can on the phone, and they are much less likely to surf the web while you talk when you are sitting in the same room.

Be more memorable

There are lots of ways to communicate with prospects, but some are better than others. The telephone was an amazing jump forward in communication technology, and without the internet the world will be a sad place with far fewer cat pictures, but as great as those tools can be for communication, nothing beats the richness of experience delivered through meeting in real life. 

As an event host you have control over your prospect’s environment. You can deliver messages on-stage, walk through demos while answering questions face-to-face and perhaps most importantly, see the reactions of your audience. Events provide you the opportunity to deliver a far more memorable experience than you would be able to with other mediums. You not only have more of your audience's attention, you also have a much better chance of having your message stick with them.

They’re fun

At an event, you can control the experience you want to have for yourself and your attendees. It’s far more energizing and personal to meet, learn about and speak with new leads face-to-face. Plus events give you the opportunity to add a little fun and flavor to your interactions with prospects. Provide entertainment, music, drinks, or food, to make the experience less formal, less confrontational, more communal and comfortable for you and your prospects. If you can create an environment where you and your prospects are having fun, you’re already well on your way to closing the deals.

How to get started and best practices

Be the expert

The most important asset you can leverage to draw in a big crowd for your event is your expertise. You know your product, your market, your customer and your customer’s pain points better than anyone. Use your expertise to create an event that prospects will want to attend.

Professional services firms like accountancies and law firms do a great job bringing in new leads with events like “What to Know When Forming Your Business.“ A topic like this can be a great vehicle for generating leads for a business like a law firm because the topic will naturally appeal to people who are looking to start a business, and therefore, will likely be in the market for legal services very soon.

Similarly, I see lots of IT consultancies and software providers hosting classes on how to manage pain points around data and technology. Not only do these classes draw in lots of qualified prospects, the class format also positions the event host as an expert helping to build credibility that will eventually help close sales.

Promote with partners

When your objective is to reach new leads, it’s important to reach beyond your own social and email audiences. Paid media is a great start, but don’t forget to leverage business partners, vendors, existing customers and local business groups to help support your event. If your event will have an educational component, consider reaching out to your local Chamber of Commerce or Rotary Club to see if they’ll include information about your event to their members.

Capture the magic

Pulling off an awesome event with the right attendees can be super energizing, but don’t waste that energy by forgetting to capture your leads. When you take online registrations for your event be sure to sync your attendees with your CRM systems. Eventbrite makes it easy to capture information on your event attendees and sync them with awesome CRM platforms like Infusionsoft.

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Michael Flynn helps SMBs and entrepreneurs build their business using Eventbrite. As the head of Eventbrite’s Business & Professional segment he works with businesses of all kinds to help them use Eventbrite’s ticketing platform to drive new leads and generate more revenue. Learn more at Evenbrite.com

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