6. Bring in outside, marquee speakers.
CIOs won't sit through PowerPoint sales pitches from your sales people or vendors. Champion brought in an industry analyst to give a market overview on virtualization and data management. And it brought in an executive from one of its customers who had already deployed a solution.
7. Speak your customer's language.
One size doesn't fit all, even among CIOs. Champion followed up the keynoters with afternoon workshops; one track for business oriented CIOs and one for technology-oriented executives.
8. Follow up early and often.
Within 48 hours, champion sent follow-up letters and emails to everyone who attended and to those who were invited, but didn't show up. Telephone calls to the CIOs followed a week later. The point here is keep after the potential client with strategic, planned follow-ups. Script everything and keep at it.
Once you find the winning formula for your organization, repeat the methodology over and over. Champion used what it learned in virtualization and data management to craft other campaigns around storage virtualization and consolidation, server virtualization and business continuity, among others.
10. Count the money.
Its virtualization and data management symposiums resulted in $8 million worth of new business and an additional pipeline of $20 million. Plus, Champion landed close to 70 new customers.