• Domo is a SaaS-based business management platform that puts real-time data directly in the hands of everyone in the organization from CEOs and business leaders down to front-line employees
  • We recently spoke with Stuart Gold about how his company maximizes the effectiveness of events for pipeline acceleration
  • When summing up his team’s post-event strategy, Stuart Gold says, “We measure what matters because what matters measures.”

Editor’s note: This post is part of the ninth issue of our B2B Marketplace Newsletter, a resource for marketing and events professionals from leading technology and services providers. Go here to learn more and subscribe.

Domo is a SaaS-based business management platform that puts real-time data directly in the hands of everyone in the organization from CEOs and business leaders down to front-line employees. This B2B platform transforms the way business is managed by changing the relationship people have with data. With Domo, it is easy for anyone to access, consume and interact with the data they need to optimize business performance.

Stuart Gold is Vice President of Corporate Events, Field & Partner Marketing at Domo. I recently got the chance to chat with Stuart and learn about how Domo maximizes the effectiveness of events for pipeline acceleration. Stuart Gold

How do you utilize predictive analytics in your events strategy?

Predictive is easier for us than others because we have visualization. We don’t just base event performance on liking the show or the booth being really busy – we use Domo and have formulas built into our algorithms that help us understand how we really did at an event. The analytics team (who, by the way, are a lot smarter than I am!) build out dashboards for us using predictive analytics. So it’s more, “We know that this is what happened, but what would happen if we turned this dial up or this dial down?” You can use all the algorithms in the world, but you have to have an experienced team. I’ve been in event marketing for 30-plus years – I’m not smarter than other people, I’ve just made more mistakes! Predictive is the new hot word, but a lot of it is just understanding the data.  Once you understand the data, you have to push it a little bit and ask, “If we spent more money or if we did more of this type of event, would this give us better or faster results?”

What do you consider hallmarks of a great event for you to pursue for sponsorship?

If we had sponsored the event previously, the first thing we do is pull the data – there has to be a single source of truth. For me and my team, a good showing is how many leads we pushed through the pipeline and whether we accelerated, acquired or influenced them. Those are the three buckets that we’re looking at – and each of those has its own sub-categories. What did we bring back from the show? Did we have great press? Was this an event we needed to do for branding and get ourselves into a market so that, for example, financial services companies know that Domo has a solution for them?  The second thing we do is look at the ROI. We look at closed/lost and say, “Okay, why did we lose it? Was it because of the event, or was it a bad lead? Or, was it a good lead but they just weren’t ready?” If that’s the case, we may still do the show next year because they may be ready next year.

For a new event, we first determine the audience. What kind of demographic is walking the floor? Do they fit in to the persona we’re looking for that has the propensity to buy? At the end of the day, if they don’t have propensity to buy, we’re looking at someone who is potentially going to be an influencer and is going to take longer to get to close than someone who has the ability to buy.

We look at the target audience, and then we look at the titles of the audience –  there are some titles that we don’t market well to because they’re not at the stage where they can understand what Domo can bring to the organization. If they’re a VP of marketing or a VP of sales ops, that’s our sweet spot. But if they’re in human resources and they’re a travel coordinator, they probably a.) don’t have the budget and b.) don’t have the understanding of the power of Domo.

The next thing is, do we have any competing events? The one thing Domo is very good at and something that I’m very proud of about my team is that if we can’t do it right, we are absolutely not going. We’ll send a salesperson or two to walk the floor and meet some people, but we’re not going to go if we can’t do it right.

We also ask, who is a previous sponsor? Is there a partner or competitor who sponsored – although just because our competitor was there, that doesn’t mean that we’ll be going, too. A very important one to us is – can we have a voice? I want to be able to stand on stage at a keynote or in a panel to talk about why I’m there and what we bring the audience. Hoping you come by my booth is not the same thing as building a breakout session that I know you will want to come to.

What are some tried-and-true methods you use to engage delegates?

Once you make the decision you’re going to an event, there are a million things you need to do to make it right. We immediately get sales involved. If we can get the list of attendees, we’ll look for people we already have in our pipeline. If we don’t have the list, we’ll see if it’s a show we did last year and who we uploaded from our scans and interactions – the odds are that 50 percent to 70 percent of the people who were there last year are coming again.

We then sit down with sales and figure out how many attendees are at a certain stage in the sales cycle. For late-stage prospects in the pipeline, we’ll do an invite-only dinner on one of the nights that are free – that’s the high touch.

Next, we’ll reach out to people we believe will be there and invite them to our booth for a meeting. It’s not, “Let’s pray you come to our booth so I can scan you.” Instead, it’s “Let’s schedule a meeting so I can show you what Domo can do for your business.”

I’ll be honest – I’m not big on giveaways. I hate swag – it brings me no value. What I do like are premium items. So, depending on the show and the industry and the persona, we may do something like invite people to our booth to have a conversation and then they have an opportunity to win a gift card from one of the companies we do business with.

How do you inspire your sales team to follow-up post-event?

This is where the rubber hits the road – we spent all this money and all this time, and we measure what matters because what matters measures – that’s my tagline! We come back to the show and upload the list, and the salespeople are waiting for us because they know we don’t “spray and pray” – we won’t scan someone who came by and only wanted a Domo pen.  

I can also track and watch what leads are – and are not – being followed up on with Domo. I sync it with our CRM, and when things start to get stale and there’s no activity, I get alerts on them! We have very specific rules here – when a lead gets uploaded, it either immediately goes to marketing qualified lead, or goes into inquiry or a nurture campaign. This is how we measure to determine if we should do a show again next year –  and the whole thing starts all over again.

About two weeks after the event, we invite the salespeople to do a post-event recap and walk through the good, the bad and the ugly. We also bring up those leads from the show and ask about what’s going on with each. We could have made a mistake – we could have scanned someone we thought was the right interaction and it wasn’t. So, we want to learn about that so the next time we know better.