With the recent ExhibitCraft showroom renovation, successful ProFest trade show and educational seminar event, and positive experience with Constant Contact, the ExhibitCraft e-mail marketing partner, an executive decision was made to host a series of educational seminars at headquarters in Wayne, NJ, and invite local business professionals and community members. The social media seminar would continue to establish ExhibitCraft as a leader in social media marketing, and the benefit of including social media in the marketing mix. Audio and video services were provided by our preferred vendor, PLS Staging. ExhibitCraft rented and set up chairs in the trade show exhibit showroom, with displays lining the perimeter of the room. The speaker, Wendi Caplan-Carroll, NY Metro Regional Director of Constant Contact, presented at a podium on stage using presentation slides shown on an HD tv monitor. Highlights of the event are available on YouTube and the presentation slidedeck is available on SlideShare, in partnership with Constant Contact.
The study was conducted to gain feedback about the event, the first time ExhibitCraft presented in partnership with Constant Contact. ExhibitCraft has hosted trade show events previously, but never an event of this kind, featuring social media as the main topic. ExhibitCraft wanted to understand attendee feedback so they could continue to improve upon and offer future events at their headquarters.
An e-mail was sent with a link to an online survey to attendees of Social Media Marketing Made Simple. The 15-question survey was designed with a combination of multiple choice and open-ended questions, leaving room for comments. An e-mail with a survey link was mailed to attendees of Social Media Marketing Made Simple one day after the event.
A good mix of open ended and multiple choice questions allowed for deeper analysis of the data, which will greatly improve future tradeshow event and seminar/workshop planning at ExhibitCraft.
The multiple choice questionnaire featured a mixture of questions about satisfaction levels with the seminar, facilities, audio/video, with a question seeking suggestions for a future event. An improvement from the previous event survey was made, allowing respondents to provide open-ended comments with each multiple choice answer.
There were a total of 25 respondents on the first survey sent to 54 attendees. This is 46% of the sample size, not a large enough sample size for this small group to be considered a good representative of the larger group. A larger sample size was desired for the study to provide accurate findings for planning successful future events at ExhibitCraft.
A second e-mail reminder was sent to the attendees who did not complete a survey during the initial phase, which resulted in nine more surveys to include in the analysis. A sample size of 64% was considered a large enough sample size to reflect accurate data, which with opportunity for insight into valuable responses left on open-ended questions.
To encourage participation in the survey and to show appreciation for taking the time to complete, a coupon incentive was offered in the e-mail to attendees. A coupon was then e-mailed to respondents who completed the survey for $250 off an ExhibitCraft ProShop promotional products purchase, with an expiration of 1/31/13.
Among some of the findings were:
96% were very satisfied with the quality of the speaker.
86.9% said they attended the event because they had an interest in social media, with 56.5% wanting to keep current on industry trends.
83% were satisfied with the showroom.
88% were satisfied with the reception desk experience.
92% were satisfied with the seminar content.
32% learned of the event through an ExhibitCraft email sent using Constant Contact.
66% of respondents were satisfied with audio/video quality, and 71% were satisfied with staging/lighting.
All respondents said they would recommend us to a friend or colleague. 88% said they were likely to attend another ExhibitCraft seminar.
The statistics show an overall positive sentiment was expressed by respondents of the survey about their participation at Social Media Marketing Made Simple at ExhibitCraft. Comments left by respondents revealed a deeper perspective at how future seminar/events could be improved. One comment sums it up, “Valuable information in a pleasant environment by an engaging presenter.”
People were very satisfied with speaker, Wendi-Caplan-Carroll, of Constant Contact. The length of the seminar (2 hours) was also satisfactory, which is an improvement over the last event, which was just ½ hour. A positive sentiment about the topic was expressed, and there were also less people who were late to arrive at this event. Social media was a topic that people were very interested in, according to the results, and there were comments for future social media event, but specializing in a particular area, such as Facebook marketing.
The overall sentiment regarding facilities was positive, and any late attendees were not turned away, as previously, as the room was much larger and more accommodating this time, and the event was longer. ExhibitCraft partnered with vendor PLS Staging to provide audio/video and had black pipe and drape curtains surrounding the room as a backdrop for displays and separation from the showroom.
Areas with room for improvement include audio/video improvements. This can be accomplished by allowing ample time to prepare the slides for viewing on a large HD monitor. We are glad this was brought to our attention so early in the ExhibitCraft event-planning phase. In the future, slides will be coordinated with ExhibitCraft’s Marketing Department and prepared for viewing in advance with the presenter.
It was also noted that the temperature in the showroom was a bit chilly for some attendees, so this will be taken into account for future events.
Future event suggestions included:
a) How networking can be really helpful and how to optimally take advantage of the opportunity.
b) CRM, Customer Relationship Management, since many of the people responsible for how exhibits are also in charge of sales.
c) Topic about branding and its benefits
d) Designing effective displays, and industry-specific ideas for giveaways.
e) E-mail marketing and e-newsletters, with information on what to include and how often to send newsletters out.
f) Case Studies
With careful event planning and analysis attendee feedback from event surveys, ExhibitCraft now has goal of having an event every other month, with a larger show every quarter. This direction is largely due to the overall positive responses of the past two ExhibitCraft events, ProFest 2012 and Social Media Marketing Made Simple. With the guidance and direction of the helpful suggestions offered by attendees who completed the survey, we will be planning future events for our local business community.
Our next event has already been scheduled and booked for November 9, 2012. “The Power of E-mail Marketing,” will by presented with partner, Constant Contact. The second presentation will be made by Vickie Siculiano, Marketing Manager. Ms. Siculiano will present ExhibitCraft’s case study for Constant Contact, and share how the company uses best e-mail marketing practices to generate new business and grow strong relationships with clients. Both presentations will be followed by Q&A. Light refreshments will be served.
If you have any comments or suggestions for tradeshow events and seminars/workshops ExhibitCraft could host, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or post a suggestion on our Facebook page.