As a consumer, I’m impressed with most of the event marketing activity I encounter. The event setups have become more robust, the contests & promotions have become more appealing and most of the interactions are now facilitated through tablet computers. With all this change, today’s consumers are leaving event marketing experiences more interested in brands than ever before.
But as a marketer, I get a sense that money is being left on the table. Yes, it is great the consumers are now aware of our products. It’s even better that their intent to purchase has increased. However, where many of us are falling short is in converting the customer interest into sales.
While a customer is interested in the brand, they may not take the next step and make a purchase. Maybe they have an unanswered objection. Maybe they don’t have the time or aren’t interested in the product at that given moment. Maybe they tell themselves they are going to consider it at a later date and never get around to it. Whatever the reason, it’s easy to understand how sales slip by.
So, what is the most effective way to convert customer interest into sales? Ask your customer for a commitment on the spot (yes, it is actually that easy. You can do this by getting them to sign up for a quote, getting them to agree to a risk-free trial or when possible, getting them to make a purchase on the spot.
For example, doing some work at this year’s Canadian International AutoShow (on right now at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre), I encountered a financial institution that was running a great credit card promotion. Customers were certainly interested in the brand, however, the interaction ended with their Promotional Representative driving traffic to the company’s website. Had the organization committed customers to applying for the card on the spot, they would have generated more sales from their promotion.
Asking for some kind of commitment is key. Customers who might not be as interested initially are now more likely to make a purchase because they’ve just had another brand interaction that may help overcome an objection.
If you don’t ask, you wont sell. It’s that simple.