Pulling off a roadshow is no easy task, but when you want to get in front of customers or your own salespeople, roadshows are extremely effective. At BumbleBee, we are seasoned roadshow veterans, and over the years, we’ve learned that there are six key steps to a successful roadshow.
STEP #1 Get Attendees Interested
To get high attendance you need to grab people’s attention with a theme that resonates, eye-catching graphics that make them pay attention and a subject line and call to action that makes them stop and click.
A series of roadshows usually leverages the same theme and content for each event, but the invitations should not appear to be mass-produced. We make sure each invitation is personalized and customized by location, logistics and attendee.
STEP #2: Keep Attendees Interested
We nurture potential attendees by sending multiple invitations. As registrations start coming in, we analyze the results regularly, so we can adjust the messaging and cadence of our communications. We also enlist the client to help drive attendance where needed.
We continue the high-touch communications after each person registers, to ensure they actually attend. They get a confirmation email, and a reminder right before the event. We make it easy for them to add the event to their calendar with a single click, and provide a mobile link to Google Maps for directions on the day of the event. Each attendee receives a follow up immediately after the event, and we gather feedback that we use to make changes to upcoming roadshow events.
STEP #3: Planning and Attention to Detail
Roadshows may be designed to deliver the same training to similar audiences, but there are a dozens of variables between venues. Attention to detail is essential to making each one run like clockwork.
Here’s an example of just how complex it can become. A recent roadshow we managed targeted 16 cities over a two-month period, and there could be no more than three events per week. There were teams of presenters arriving from multiple companies, which meant the events had to be geographically mapped to optimize travel plans and schedules. Some events would be held at local sales offices, while others required venue rentals—and each event had to be less than five miles from the local client office. Additionally, some locations were expected to attract 20 people, and some 100. Most would be held in a single room seminar-style, but a few required that groups of attendees would cycle through multiple rooms round robin style.
Because we have a process, tools, and experienced event managers to track event details, we were able to accommodate these variables and complexities in an organized way, so that each venue had what they needed.
STEP #4: Onsite Management
When it comes to events, expect the unexpected. This is why we are often onsite to manage events, but often the client takes over from there. In those cases we provide everything they need to make it easy: registration lists, name tags, training materials, tracking codes, contact names for the venue, catering, and any other resources that they might need. We’re also on call to provide additional help and back up.
STEP #5: Handling the Unexpected
Anyone who has ever planned an event knows that there are often last minute changes, hiccups or all-out emergencies. Snowstorm delayed the materials? We’ll find someone local to produce and deliver them to the venue. Have an additional twenty people who decided to show up the morning of the event? We are on the phone with caterers and the venue to make sure they can accommodate them.
STEP #6: Communication is the key
No matter the size or complexity of the roadshow, communication is key. We hold regular (weekly or bi-weekly) meetings with our clients during the duration of the roadshow to review attendee reports. We also hold regular debriefings especially after the first few events because there are always ways to make improvements.
After the roadshow is over, we deliver the results and a summary, so the client has all the information they need to measure the success, and to plan for the next roadshow.
Need help planning and managing your next roadshow? Give us a call!