Internet Marketing Strategies for B2B Events. We’ve done hundreds of B2B events. Our most successful events were the ones with a strong digital marketing strategy to support them. We’ve spent a lot of time testing and optimizing different strategies so now we are well equipped to handle any Event, digital or otherwise. So we thought now is a good time to share them with you.
Digital Marketing Strategies Before the event
In B2B marketing, you will be dealing with 2 primary types of events.
- Events that you host yourself;
- Events that you sponsor or participate in.
Depending on which event you’re currently dealing with, your digital marketing strategy for events will be slightly different.
The good news is that there will be some overlap. This means you can apply the best practices for both types of events.
Landing page for Internet Marketing Strategies for B2B Events
For events that you host yourself, this is a no-brainer. You will need a landing page. On this page, you can provide your audience with relevant information about the event. There will be a registration form and some sort of agenda at the very least.
For some external events, we create a landing pages as well or they called funnels. Especially when we are participating in an event year-over-year. Here’s why.
If you already know that you will participate in an event many times, you can obtain many organic benefits.
For a large trade show in Europe, I’ve developed a landing page. It’s an event that we attend year-over-year. The result is that we were able to optimize it for SEO and now have loads of backlinks to that page. You can check the backlinks to your landing page through tools such as Semrush.
This means that when event attendees search for the event, our landing page is one of the top results. This leads to relevant organic traffic and our sales team is using that to scheduled one-to-one meetings before the event.
We also did a few keynote presentations for Internet Marketing Strategies for B2B Events in the past on that event. We’ve recorded this and uploaded it to the landing page. We use this as our pre-event promotion to attract people to our keynote presentations. By showing them what they can expect in terms of quality, it’s easier to get them to attend. This means more leads for us and a better event ROI.
A landing page is also an absolute must for virtual conferences.
Using Event Markup
You want to make it easy for people to understand which event you are hosting or participating in.
Through structured data, you can implement something called Event Markup. Basically, this tells search engines that some content on your website is related to an event. Implemented correctly, Google will show your event as a rich snippet for Internet Marketing Strategies for B2B Events
It makes it easy for people to see some relevant information about your event on Google such as tickets. This is something you don’t want to miss out on.
Email marketing will help you to promote events that you host. It allows you to send invitations so that people register for your event. Additionally, you can send people updates about the event. For B2B events this is critical, especially if your event is free to attend.
Here’s why. Business people have tight schedules and they might forget about your event. By constantly reminding them, you will keep the event top-of-mind. You can also share updates from the development of the agenda. After all, without a good agenda, people don’t attend your event. So the goal of email marketing is also to reduce no-shows.
For events that you sponsor, email marketing can be used for the following things:
- Trying to schedule one-to-one meetings during the event;
- Getting people to attend your keynote presentation;
- Getting people to register for a satellite event such as a breakfast session;
- Get people to visit your booth.
Programmatic advertising is one of the best way to fill events. It allows you to place ads in front of highly targeted audiences.
Imagine that you are creating an event for the low-code industry. With programmatic advertising, you can target people that are currently researching low-code on third-party websites.
This is especially important when you are hosting a big user group event where you combine prospects, customers and partners.
But wait! There’s more!
Many B2B companies have a so-called target accounts strategy. This means that they have a select list of accounts to which they want to sell. Well, with programmatic advertising, you can select certain audiences of those target accounts.
Let’s say your ideal target persona is a CIO from companies over 5000 employees. Programmatic advertising allows you to place ads to those people on third-party websites and get the most from Internet Marketing Strategies for B2B Events
Now, let’s look at external events.
Let’s say you attend a large trade show year-over-year. You will have accumulated a list of accounts that attend that event. Generally, you know what personas attend that event. For the sake of simplicity, let’s keep using CIOs.
Well, since you already have an account list, and you know what personas are attending; you can now place ads in front of those people to try to schedule one-to-one meetings or to get them to attend your keynote.
Social Media advertising
Every event will have an event-specific hashtag. People attending that event will use that hashtag on social media to share their experiences.
It goes without saying that you also need to be sharing frequent posts and including that hashtag.
People who are attending events will look at what other people have to say about that event. This is an opportunity for you to create awareness about your brand.
If you are hosting an event, you need to incentivize people to use that hashtag and post a lot of content to social media. You will create massive awareness and it will be easier to fill your event.
Also, consider remarketing on social media. People who’ve been to your website, but maybe not registered for your event should be remarketed. Take into consideration that they didn’t register when visiting your website for the first time. So, you need to be providing high quality and value for that person. This can only be done by making the messages highly personable.
Through the use of a chatbot, you can make your website visitors aware of an event. This can be an internal or external event.
A chatbot allows you to place a chat message in front of a target audience. You can redirect people to the registration page of your B2B event.
This digital marketing strategy for events is powerful. Imagine that you are hosting an event year-over-year. Every year you will get more people to register for your event.
When people that attended your event in the past, you can now show them a message that registrations have opened for the next edition.
Account Enrichment through lead generation
As mentioned earlier, B2B companies often have a select list of target accounts. Well, as a marketer, it’s our job to enrich those accounts with the relevant personas.
You need to be generating loads of leads in those accounts which will make it easier for sales to sell your products or services to them.
Consider using strategies such as content syndication to generate targeted leads.
When you’ve generated those leads, you can now invite them to attend your event. Getting many people to attend your event is great. However, the most important thing is quality. It’s better to have 50 qualified leads attending than 100 unqualified leads.
At the end of the day, you want to have a great B2B event ROI. This can only be done by focusing on quality. This digital marketing strategy for my events has made a big impact on pipeline generation.
Especially when hosting an event, you want to be creating relevant content to promote the event.
Think about creating videos and posting them on social media. Perhaps do a bunch of webinars to promote the event or have a call-to-action throughout existing webinars.
Consider writing blog posts about the event and letting people know what’s in it for them. What value do they get out of attending your event?
When you’ve created the content, now it’s time to promote that content. Not just on your website, but also on third-party websites.
Perhaps you’re hosting an event and you have companies sponsoring your event. Great! You can ask every sponsoring company to share your content on their channels.
To be Continued …