BtoB events are made up of a wide range of event formats. This article focuses on the marketing events that are sponsored by a set of partners.
Sponsor packages are the primary source of income for the organizers of these type of events.
The quality of the partners sponsoring the event is an indicator of the quality of the event itself. Gathering many sponsors helps increase registrations and improve participant experience.
For all these reasons, sponsor’s engagement is a key factor of success for your event.
Partners have ROI objectives on their marketing investments and are increasingly demanding about the returns they can expect from their participation in an event.
This is why you need to provide strong value to partners and sponsors if you want to convince them to buy expensive packages and to build customer loyalty for future editions of your events.
A simple promise of logo visibility on the event’s website or the choice of a well-located booth in the exhibition area is no longer enough.
Here are the three strategies to ensure the satisfaction of your event sponsors.
1) Make preparation easier for event sponsors
The preparation of the event might just be as important as the event itself for a good sponsor experience. Many tasks, such as the following, need to be done within a tight timeframe: reading the partners guidelines, providing marketing deliverables, content for speeches and speakers’ bios, communicating specific requests, registering team members, managing invitation quotas, etc.
If carrying out these tasks requires endless email exchanges with your organizing team, or if you forget an element when listing what you need, your partner won’t be satisfied.
The solution to this major issue is to use an event platform that will centralize all exchanges between your team and the partner’s team.
With the inwink platform, each partner has a dedicated workspace where they can prepare their attendance, and handle all the tasks they need to:
- Consult the tasks assigned by the organizer
- Manage their own marketing content to be published on the event website (logo, description, speakers, links, etc.)
- Register employees, then generate and download badges for them
- Monitor the registration of guests and their presence at the event
- Discuss with participants who contacted them via chat
And so on.
The organizing team will therefore be able to follow the progress of the tasks to be done, and make sure that nothing is forgotten.
The productivity gains are significant on both sides, leaving your partners’ marketing teams impressed and delighted.
This is indeed a great point that will unfortunately not be enough. Don’t forget that the most important expectation for a partner is, yup you guessed it, lead generation!
2) Multiply opportunities to meet new leads for sponsors
Gaining brand visibility can be a goal for sponsoring an event. But the main objective of partners is, mostly, to generate new leads thanks to the event.
Random visits from participants to their (virtual or physical) booth or improvised meetings between two sessions are a good start, but they can’t be all you offer your sponsors.
There are many ways to help your sponsors get quality leads:
- Networking: set the matchmaking algorithm to make partners more visible to participants by giving them more weight
- Online networking: give your partners the opportunity to hold a dedicated online networking table that participants can freely join for a conversation at any moment during the event
- One-to-one business meetings: offer your partners the possibility to arrange meetings with qualified participants, in defined time slots
- Sponsored sessions: provide the partner with the list of attendees for their specific session
As far as sessions are concerned, a slot on the main stage will bring the partner high visibility, but no direct leads. The organizer won’t be able to provide them with the list of attendees to this main stage session.
Once the sponsors have created all the occasions to meet new leads, they will be expecting to quickly access the data they collect about these leads.
3) Make relevant data available at any time
During an in-person event, it is essential for partners to have a user-friendly, and fast application to scan the badges of the participants they meet. They also might want to add live notes of contact qualification. This app, such as inwink Lead Gen, should be available on standard smartphones, which will provide more flexibility and be less expensive than specific equipment.
Whether the event is in-person or online, the partner should be able to access all collected data in real time, without having to ask the organizer or having to wait until the end of the event.
From your partner’s dedicated workspace on the inwink platform, sponsors can access and export data in real time:
- The overall statistics of the event
- The list of participants who attended their sponsored session
- The contacts made and the opportunities generated by the sponsor’s team
- The appointments made during the event
4) Cherish your partners
A reminder to all BtoB marketers: don’t take your partners’ engagement for granted!
It’s essential to treat them as a key audience that you need to delight just as much as you seek to delight your participants.
- To do this, visibility alone is no longer enough. You will have to bring them more value with: a fluid and efficient support to guarantee an efficient and seamless preparation.
- – Maximum lead gen
- – The availability of their data at all times
- – A systematic debrief with each of them to discuss their ROI of the event
To be able to deliver this irresistible promise, the marketer needs an event platform that will allow them to work in a collaborative mode with their partners. They’ll also need real-time control over the follow-up of their new contacts and business meetings.