Lead generation is one of the most important processes in marketing. Ask around any company and they’ll tell you exactly that. Taskforces with plenty of qualified people are formed solely with the intent of generating leads. And for years, organizations harnessed the power of conferences and trade-shows in order to improve their overall marketing strategies. But you don’t need us to tell you any of this! When it comes to in-person events coming to a grinding halt, though, it’s another story.
So, is lead generation under the guise of events truly over? Absolutely not! While virtual events might be far from where they will one day be in terms of technology, the benefits they bring to the table are very clear. And yet, virtual events for lead generation are still being disregarded or altogether ignored. When in fact, they’re quite a powerful weapon marketers should be considering. And especially taking into account the current paradigm of the world. So why exactly should you consider going ahead with virtual events for lead generation? Keep reading to find out!
The Target Is Already There
One of the first steps that go into planning an event – regardless of the format – is defining the target audience. And when using events as a tool to generate leads, this becomes increasingly more important. You only want people attending your event if they fit your marketing personas and are likely to be interested in what you’re selling. This is marketing 101!
When it comes to in-person events, there’s always the chance that someone will be there as company rather than a potential buyer. Who among us hasn’t dragged a friend or family member to an event with us? Well, there’s definitely none of that in virtual events. People are attending remotely and alone, period. And with so many online experiences to choose from, if they opt for yours, then they’re definitely interested! The chances that your virtual event will only attract a pool of potential profit is quite alluring, is it not?
And You Can Connect With A Broader Audience!
Since we’re on the topic of potential profit coming from virtual events for lead generation, let’s discuss the reach, shall we? No matter how big of a venue you would be able to snatch for your in-person event, it would never come close to the possibilities of a virtual event. Whether it’s 100 or 10,000, truth is, virtual is pretty much boundless.
So this means that, regarding the pool of people you can reach out to and host at your virtual experience, the sky is the limit! Your reach is no longer restricted by travel expenses, venue capacity, or budget constraints. For the very first time, events are opening up and evolving towards a world where bringing hundreds of thousands, or even millions of people together is possible!
Let us be clear here – do not cheap out on the production budget of your virtual event! It’s a common misconception that these experiences will cost a lot less money than in-person ones. But just like we’ve explained before, that only applies if you’re looking to put on a glorified Zoom webinar as opposed to a full-fledged virtual event. However, if lead gen is your goal, that’s not a very good idea (and it’s just not the right way to go in general).
When we say minimize costs, we mean on the attendee side. Above, we already briefly touched upon it. But it’s worth emphasizing how the barriers to entry in a virtual event are much lower than with in-person experiences. No paying for traveling, whether it be by plane or not, no splurging on hotel rooms, no extra meals outside of the catering…all of this adds up to create a very captivating opportunity for your potential audience!
Shorten The Sales Cycle
As anyone working in the grueling world of marketing and sales will tell you, the sales cycle is no picnic. You often have to work on a prospect for several weeks, leading them through several stages of the funnel. And all of this doesn’t even guarantee that the deal will be closed in the end! It’s a lot of time and effort, with zero certainties of a positive outcome.
Transfer all of that into a virtual setting, though, and things look a lot different. In a single swing, you’re qualifying your leads (see the first point), giving demonstrations, showcasing your products/services, and allowing for negotiation to take place on the spot. And just like that, virtual events for lead generation can take your sales cycle from several weeks down to mere hours.
Deliver What The Audience Wants To See
Virtual events allow for real-time interaction with the audience. While some may believe that virtual audience engagement is a difficult task to accomplish successfully, there are actually plenty of tools that can help out, from polls to live chat and one-on-one interactions between attendees.
As a tool for lead generation, virtual events become even more powerful when you realize there’s the potential to react live to what your attendees want. You can gauge in real-time their reactions to the content you’re presenting, and adjust the experience accordingly. Plus, if someone has questions or concerns about your product or service, you can be there for them instantly. It gives stellar customer support a whole new meaning!
Harness The Power Of Data
One of the strongest aspects of virtual events for lead generations is data. Data is slowly but surely becoming the new currency, and marketing experts figured it out already. Having access to information like demographics, online behaviors, downloads, and interactions are powerful tools when it comes to selling.
Hosting a virtual event will give you access to valuable insights, including download volume of certain pieces of content, number of views, interactions, transactions, applications…and much more! With all of these inputs under your belt, you can evaluate the quality of your leads, see what content they prefer, improve upon upcoming events, build more successful and targeted nurturing campaigns – only to name a few improvements. The power of data can’t be overstated, particularly for marketers and businesses. When examined under this lens, virtual events becoming a pool of untapped potential in the world of lead generation. Care to jump in?
Leave It Out In The Open (& Keep Them Coming Back)
Let us not forget yet another superpower hiding behind virtual events – the evergreen content. If the sessions are recorded and made available to access again, at any time, and from any place, the opportunity to generate more leads doesn’t begin and end with the live version of your event.
Long after the experience is done and dealt with, a downloadable version will consistently increase your reach through shares and downloads. And this means more potential leads, more contacts, and even more revenue if you decide on creating a streaming service of your own. We said it several times and we’ll say it again – with virtual events, the opportunities are endless!
Virtual Events For Lead Generation: Conclusions
Ooof! That was a wild ride. But the bottom line here is pretty easy to grasp – virtual events, if done correctly, can be your best friend to generate more leads. The benefits are clear, and arguably, far superior to those offered by an in-person event.
If you still want to learn more about virtual events, go ahead and download our complete guide by clicking the button below. But if you’re ready to move forward and produce your own, chat with us today – the Endless team is here to help!