After seeing Salesforce's Dreamforce user conference drawing in over a hundred thousand attendees, you probably assume that there's no point in holding your own branded user conference... until you achieve a similar size, that is. However, you couldn't be more wrong.
Even if you only have 100 customers, you could still benefit significantly from hosting a branded user conference.
Building Customer Loyalty
You use many strategies to build your customer relationships, but nothing is quite as effective as being face to face with your customers. That level of accessibility provides you with 100 times the relationship-building power as a phone call, generating strong customer loyalty and advocacy.
When you're a company leader and your users don't have to deal with any sort of gatekeeping to mingle with you, it's easier to create a strong bond between yourself and that user. Not only are you creating connections with your customers; you're also giving them the opportunity to network with other people using your products.
If your user conference helps strengthen ties between your clients, everyone benefits in the end.
Competitive Advantage in Industry
User conferences don't have to be massive, complicated and expensive affairs, but they certainly come off like that from the outside. Going through the logistical steps to set up a branded user conference may seem daunting, but they can give you a competitive advantage in your industry.
When you put an appropriate amount of effort into your conference, you will attract customers who see you as an authority. And as your user conference grows in popularity, you will attract the attention of other companies in your industry, prominent thought leaders and additional resources that allow you to cement your place as an industry leader.
Widen keeps its user conference free to grow its user base and keep it accessible, thereby gaining a positive ROI through its positioning as an industry leader.
High Return on Investment
The average return on investment event marketers reported was 5:1. Cisco's Global Sales Conference went virtual this year to build engagement among users who haven't been able to make it out to previous GSX events. After instituting the change, Cisco found that 80 percent of attendees responded to pre-registration messages compared to the previous average of 55 percent.
A user conference doesn't have to be a massive drain on your budget to be a massive boost in your business's brand awareness, user loyalty and industry positioning. Play your cards right, and you could end up being the next Dreamforce, which grew from 1,300 attendees at the first conference to approximately 150,000 in 2014.
Contact the event experts at Cramer to chat about how to realize those conference ambitions in 2016!
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