With only a week to go until OTB grace Prolific North’s Marketing Show North, we take a look at how your continued absence from marketing events is damaging the prospects of your business. Given that the primary purpose of marketing is to sell or promote a product or service, it literally makes no sense at all to stubbornly neglect the opportunities that a marketing event presents.
Even if you loathe the idea of attending one of these events, a competitor’s attendance in your absence won’t be of any benefit to you. From generating genuine new business leads, to increasing brand awareness, to staying abreast of current trends, the advantages of attending a marketing event far outweigh any perceived negatives.
Here’s what you and your business could gain from attending:
Networking. Networking. Networking.
Eurgh. That word can be enough to make people shudder. But if you put to one side the negative connotations that come with networking – the schmoozing and the relentless need to be instantly liked - it can be a real asset to the prospects of your business. Connecting with people in a similar field will produce a multitude of referrals, referrals that will be pre-qualified for you, meaning it’s more likely that you’ll be able to convert them into a permanent client.
Even if you are unable to convert a new lead on the day, you will have gained a genuine lead that will enhance the prospects of your business. You can now pursue this lead based on the positive interaction you’ve already had, and it means you won’t be approaching them ‘cold’. Hopefully you will have made a meaningful impression on the day and any follow up activity will be welcomed, resulting in a deal of some sort being struck.
Direct and unfiltered access to your target audience
Although a proportion of the exhibitors or attendees at these events may have the same motives as you, a substantial percentage of the footfall with be companies or individuals touting for business. Marketing events are a brilliant way of showcasing your capabilities; you’re talking directly to a captive audience. Imagine a marketing event as your brand’s shop window; instead of being in a high street full of shops of all kinds, you command the whole of the high street and shoppers are only looking to buy what you’re selling.
Boosting brand awareness
Events are priceless exposure for a brand. While your brand’s website or online marketing collateral may get lost in a sea of internet traffic, this is your opportunity to talk about and demonstrate what you’re capable of in person. This is your chance to grab the interest of passers-by and how you do that is entirely up to you; entice them to your stand with food or drink, attract them with a game of some sort or seduce them with a discount offer they can’t refuse. Whatever means you use to increase footfall, it is then up to you to capitalise on the attention span of your audience.
Gaining a new perspective
Although you may think that these events have no use to you at all because you’ve got a wealth of marketing experience, chances are you can be taught something new. In a room full of marketers, there will be people with more experience and people who approach problems in a completely different way to you and your team. This exposes you to a different way of thinking – a way of thinking that you may have never considered.
Keeping up with current trends
As a marketing agency professional, you’ll be well versed in the eternal struggle of staying ahead of your competition. These events not only give you the chance to sample what your competition might be doing differently, but you’ll also be able to listen to guest speakers who will inform you of current or future industry trends.
Admittedly, your attendance at a marketing event doesn’t guarantee an afternoon of enlightenment and success, but it does at least give you a shot at raising the prospects of your business. Even if you go to an event and learn a whole host of things not to do, it will have been in some way beneficial.
Have you ever been to a marketing event? What did you find most useful about the experience? Tweet us at @otbtweeter with your thoughts, and make sure to stop by Stand 56 on Feb 27th & 28th if you’re attending Marketing Show North at EventCity.