Measuring the ROI. of meetings and events and pinpointing their impact on corporate performance is an important yet challenging area of focus for meeting and event planners. It's one of the keys to ensuring the longevity and success of the industry in the corporate sector.
The CMO Council of the Exhibit and Marketers Association report with the results of its study Customer Attainment From Event Engagement provides some clues about approaches for measuring meeting ROI.
The study, which gathered responses from 265 senior corporate marketing executives, zeroed in on 4 key areas.
- Attendance Trends
- The Role of Events in the Marketing Mix
- The Evolution of Event Marketing Strategies
- Value Added Analytics
81% of trade show attendees have the power to recommend or make final purchasing decisions. In fact 47% of attendees indicated that the main reason for attending trade shows was to gather information to facilitate specific purchasing decisions in the subsequent 12 months.
The Role of Events in the Marketing Mix
With respect to the role of events in marketing,
- 89% of study respondents indicated that events have some importance
- 31% indicated that events are an essential part of doing business
The areas in which events were assessed as having a significant role included:
- sourcing new prospects and business opportunities (64%)
- lead generation, cultivation and prospecting (63%)
- face-to-face meetings with clients (60%)
An opportunity for growth is that only 14% of executives surveyed indicated that events were an ideal environment for making and closing deals.
Event Marketing Strategies Evolution
The top metrics that marketing executives identified for measuring ROI from trades shows and events were:
- new referrals and introductions (71%)
- Quality and quantity of leads (66%)
- Deals closed (52%)
- Dollar value of sales (51%)
- upselling or cross-selling success (38%)
While the overwhelming majority of respondents indicated that they derive great value from participation as speakers and panelists at trade shows, 40% indicated that they are cutting back on large shows and shifting their spend to smaller more targeted niche or vertical market-specific events.
An area identified for marked improvement was that only 6% of respondents had confidence in the ability of their organizations to convert trade show leads into business. This highlights an area for growth where companies would be wise to invest their training and development budgets.
Value Added Analytics
The 2 most important challenges identified by the marketing executives were:
- building a solid business case for event and trade show participation (45%)
- managing escalated budgets and resource requirements (39%)
For more content related to events and ROI. also consult Corporate Event ROI. Measurement: 5 Elements to Consider and Economic Indicators Underscore Corporate Events ROI. Importance on the Cvent Event Blog.