New Attendee Acquisition Benchmarks and Practices Study Released

March 19, 2015

Exhibit Surveys and Lippman Connects recently teamed up to conduct a study that examined “New Attendee Acquisition Benchmarks & Practices” and, among other findings, a two-thirds majority of the attendee acquisition/attendee marketers respondents said they expected revenue growth.

“(The fact that) 65 percent of respondents anticipate their next event’s revenue will increase is a very positive sign for our industry,” said Sam Lippman, president and founder of Lippman Connects, which is compared to one-third citing higher revenue expectations last year.

As one can imagine, the largest attendee acquisition challenges cited were capturing the attention of the audience/prospects (64 percent) and identifying new prospects (60 percent).

Buying lists is the top method used to identify new prospects. Partnering with industry organizations, using social networking/social media and attending other industry tradeshows also were mentioned.

Two-thirds of attendees have concentrated their efforts on more targeted efforts to retain and attract attendees, while more than half also have taken the time to improve their mobile app.

Even so, improving the mobile app experience at the event even more still was on respondents’ to-do list, according to Jeff Stanley, executive director of strategic research at Exhibit Surveys.

“Improving the mobile app is one of the key actions respondents are taking to attract and retain their attendees, which seems to indicate there could be some change or flux in their providers of mobile apps,” Stanley said.

He added, “Discussion at a recent Attendee Acquisition Roundtable indicated that event marketers were still looking to get from their mobile app the right mix of functionality, as well as increased adoption by attendees.”

All events use e-mail marketing, digital and social marketing methods. Seventy percent use SEO/Paid search and 63 percent use telemarketing.

In the coming year, two-thirds plan to increase their social media marketing budget and more than half plan to increase spending for digital marketing.

Most of the respondents utilize social media efforts in their marketing, although one-fifth say they consider their efforts to be successful

The average cost to attract an attendee to an event is $31.74 per attendee.

“From discussion at a recent Attendee Acquisition Roundtable, we found out that some shows are not tracking this cost, but the ones that are most metrics savvy use this number to gauge the success of their efforts,” Stanley said.

Lippman found a glaring problem in the fact that only one-third of respondents had anything to do with the event’s educational programs.

“How can organizations expect someone to successfully market a program they were not involved in creating?” he asked. 

To download the executive summary of the story, click HERE.

For more information on taking part in an Attendee Acquisition Roundtable, click HERE

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