Given the large networking element of the industry, recruiters can benefit massively from attending and organising events. Considering the volume of potential candidates that attend niche conferences and meet-ups, industry events can be invaluable for securing leads, which is the ultimate goal for any sales driven enterprise, after all.
Although they are one of the more powerful weapons in a recruiter’s arsenal, organising events can be quite an intimidating prospect, especially for first timers. It doesn’t have to be this way, however, as approaching the organisation process logically will give you all the answers to ensure your event runs smoothly and profitably. Taking this goal-focused approach will allow you to get what you want out of your event.
Consider whether this is the right event for you
Event coordination is a huge industry that is worth billions across the globe. For this reason, don’t assume that an event is beneficial to you just because you’ve been invited to buy a stall or sponsor it. Never part with your cash before first being conscious of whether the event is relevant to your industry and will connect you with the appropriate people.
Showcasing at a bad or irrelevant event is worse than showcasing at no events at all.
Be smart about data collection
If candidate leads are your primary focus, think about what you can do at the event to collect the most data possible. Is it simply enough to offer a candidate signup sheet, or should you be intuitive and offer a prize giveaway in exchange for precious contact details? After you collect the data, don’t sit in it until it goes cold. Follow-up with a post-event email marketing campaign, with tailored emails directed towards people who you made memorable connections with.
Be thorough when attracting sponsorship
While businesses may be fully enthusiastic about your event and the work you are doing, they aren’t going to consider sponsoring it until they know what they stand to gain. Nicola Lloyd is head of Event Marketing at Nigel Frank International, and believes setting out a ROI for potential sponsors can go a long way.
“For the most part, sponsorship is a numbers game,” Lloyd explains. “Help your sponsors estimate their potential lead value by giving them key information. Tell them how many people you expect to attend, how many attendees are relevant to their brand, the average conversion rate for similar sponsors in the past, and how much it will cost them altogether.”
Offer extra incentives for sponsors
While sponsors will be looking to gather leads out of your event, they would also no doubt appreciate a boost to their digital presence. You could offer them a link on your event website, as well as promotion on your social media channels. Take steps to elevate their brand as well as offering them a platform to connect with industry influencers.
Make your event unique and attractive
While it’s one thing to organise an event, it’s another to make it interesting enough for relevant people to want to attend. Think about the type of attendees you’re looking to attract and what would interest them. Approach it as if you were booking a band to play a show — if you’re looking to primarily attract young people, you wouldn’t book Tom Jones.
Stephenie Wright is a Marketing Executive at Frank Recruitment Group and believes offering must-see attractions is an effective way of pulling in the right people. “Everyone wants to say they were there for the latest product announcement, demonstration or must-see talk,” reveals Wright. “If for example, you want to attract NetSuite developers to your event, a keynote from NetSuite founder Evan Goldberg would probably do the trick.”
While approaching your first event may seem like a harrowing prospect, focusing on what you aim to gain and making arrangements in light of that will set you up to enjoy a stress-free, lead-filled direct marketing experience.