3.) Choose Your Event Venue Wisely
When selecting your meeting venue, consider the real estate agent's mantra: Location, location, location. The most important thing to remember is to make attending the event as easy as possible. Check in with each prospect the day before, and provide directions with a map for reference. Make sure the venue you select has ample parking as well.
The right venue is also instrumental in facilitating better communication and ultimately better return on your event investment of time and money. Ideally, your event should take place at a venue that is conducive to face-to-face interaction. Though entertaining, sporting events and restaurants that feature arcades and games hijack the prospects' attention and take the focus away from your presentation. Instead, select a family-style restaurant that forces all event attendees to interact. If this is not possible, consider a fixed menu so ordering time is minimized and streamlined.
Also note that the number of prospects attending can depend on where the venue is located. In metropolitan areas, for example, you can expect a smaller turnout unless the venue is located within walking distance of the business district.
4.) Be Respectful of Your Prospects' Time
Your prospects may not have a flexible schedule, so make the most of the time you have with them and respect their availability. Start on time, keep the conversation moving and wrap it up within an hour.
5.) Reach Out to Prospects Post-Event
Don't give prospects a chance to forget the event. Resellers and vendors must share the responsibility to follow up with their prospects afterward -- the sooner, the better. Staying top of mind is critical to turn a prospect's initial interest into a sale.
The five aforementioned steps are, indeed, the basics to ensuring a fruitful channel event, but additional details can enhance the prospects' experience while there and ensure a smooth execution. They include the following:
- Make sure all attending representatives from the reseller and vendor are at the venue before prospects arrive.
- If possible, create place cards for the table, and seat prospects strategically to help facilitate smooth interaction.
- Make available name tags and pens.
- Gather business cards.
There are, of course, always wrenches that are thrown in to mar a perfect setup. But by investing significant forethought into the planning and execution of a channel event, resellers and vendors can capitalize on their partnership to close those coveted sales.
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