Stay updated with what’s hot and what’s not in the world of event marketing.


4 ways to grow and engage your community through events

Mins Read
Kishore C S

If you're looking to take your community engagement to the next level, hosting events is the way to go. Here are 4 expert-backed tips to plan your community events program.

For professionals working remotely, communities are all the rage. They are trusted inner circles that help them grow, connect, interact and upskill. 

But what separates a thriving online community from the rest?


A variety of community events can play a huge role not only in engaging members but also in connecting professionals and building relationships.

To understand this from an insider’s perspective, we recently spoke to Asher Mathew, CEO & co-founder, Partnership Leaders. Asher runs a community that’s dedicated to providing a space for (yes, you guessed it) partnership professionals to come together, share and gain insights, upskill and grow.

Here are the four top takeaways from the conversation:

Have a game plan

For starters, you’ll need a marketing function to manage and run your community’s event needs. Once you have your marketing team in place, it helps to get the pulse of what your members are talking about or interested in learning. 

Here’s how Asher describes his event strategy for Partnership Leaders:

“We would take the top conversations that are happening inside of PL and would say, okay I think people would want to listen to about this and so we would just run a webinar or event on the topic.”

From a quarterly perspective, Partnership Leaders’ event programs are typically broken into:

  • Month one: Do a event that is crowdsourced 
  • Month two: Do another event that was crowdsourced
  • Month three: we would do a much larger event and bring thought leaders from outside onto a virtual event to talk about the same two topics.

The best time to start running events is now

For those starting off with creating a community, is there a perfect time to consider hosting a webinar or virtual event

Asher suggests the sooner the better, simply because of the power that events hold in getting people together.

When you run an event, you can connect people on a panel, and then there's another relationship that those people form, so events really help you promote people's brands”, says Asher.

Co-creation is the way to go

To truly run events that make a difference to your community members or promise value to prospective members, it pays to understand what they want. This is where it can be a great idea to, let’s say, involve your members while you’re conceptualizing your topics and sessions and get real-time inputs as you put your event together.

Asher highly recommends this approach for anyone looking to engage and grow their community with events. 

Our upcoming conference, Catalyst, is being built with its attendees - so the 150 or so people that have bought tickets already are participating in building the content for the conference! it's just a very different way of building something and making sure that you ensure value because the people are on the journey with you.

Measure event success from different angles

Any event’s success is tied to its goals. For communities, events are run to engage and nurture existing members as well as to acquire new ones. When we asked Asher how he measures the success of events at Partnership Leaders, he suggested looking at events as products.

You really need to look at event as a product and say well what is the output of the event? Yes it is about attracting new prospects and converting them into customers but the customer success view of an event is to promote people's brands, connect them at a different level and help them tell their story so that they can be viewed as a human who has rich experiences.” 

He then adds that you can gauge your event’s success from these angles:

  • From a customer acquisition perspective, look at how much your database has increased in terms of new sign ups, post your event
  • From a customer success perspective, track how many members attended your event, how many times have they attended your events in a year - this will help you with renewals.

So, go ahead and consider experimenting with four strategies outlined here. By running successful events, you’ll not only help grow your community but also deepen your relationship with your existing members. 

Also, it doesn’t hurt to listen to your community's feedback and adjust your approach accordingly to ensure your events continue to meet their needs and expectations!

Virtual Events

4 Ways To Make Your Webinar Registrants Actually Show Up

Mins Read
Kishore C S

Are you tired of hosting webinars that no one shows up to? Don't despair! With a few simple tweaks, you can boost your attendance.

For event marketers, seeing a low registration-to-attendee ratio is as heartbreaking as being stood up on a dinner date.

Think about it: you have a great topic, a solid marketing plan that is driving registrations, and a popular guest speaker as well - yet getting registrants to actually show up can be a challenge. 

But fear not – the 4 tips in this article are certainly worth your time if you’re looking to jazz up that attendee-to-registration ratio.

Send Automated Reminders and Calendar Blocks:

It’s fair to assume that all your potential attendees have busy work schedules. 

Hence, it’s a bit of a stretch to expect them to remember which event or webinar they registered for. This is where event marketers can leverage technology to send automated reminders, including calendar blocks. 

Additionally, set up run-up emails that will be sent out a few days before, the day before, and a few hours before the event. Include details like the date, time, and how to join the webinar platform to ensure attendees know what to expect.

Here’s an example of how you can plan out your email reminders, for instance:

Select a time slot (and day) that suits your audience

From an attendee’s perspective, nothing can be a bigger buzzkill than them registering for an event and then learning that it’s happening at an unearthly hour. With the digital realm, event marketers have to be mindful of time zones. So pick a webinar slot that is neither going to clash with prime-time Netflix viewing nor is going to be an unearthly hour for your attendees. 

If your attendee time zones are spread out, pick a common time that is great for a majority of them.

This article by indicates that the 10 AM - 12 PM PST slot could be ideal (with 11 AM being am the most popular start time). This timing is convenient because it corresponds to 2 PM EST and 8 PM in Europe, making it accessible for viewers across different time zones. 

Similarly, you are not going to want to host a webinar on a day when your attendees are observing a particular holiday etc, for obvious reasons. 

Since your target attendees are largely B2B professionals, the article recommends that you optimize attendance by scheduling webinars on weekdays, with Thursday being the top pick, followed by Wednesday and Tuesday. 

Make attending your event as simple as possible for the attendee

Let’s face it; nobody likes a tedious login process, especially when it comes to events.

This is where you as an event marketer can introduce some magic into the experience, quite literally. Yes, we’re talking about Magic Links

Why use magic links?

When these are enabled, your attendees will be provided with a distinct URL that enables instant access to your event or webinar with a simple click. This means no need for authentication, no usernames to remember; and most importantly - no passwords to forget!

Scarcity and FOMO go a long way

The psychological phenomenon of “people want what they can’t have” is the basis of scarcity marketing. 

With social media showcasing a world of experiences, around 69% of millennials feel the FOMO bug, spurring them to attend, participate, and share.

So how do you weave this into your marketing campaign effectively?

According to this article by Forbes, the right formula to create a ‘must-attend’ mindset is to make sure your campaign makes your target audience curious while giving them a compelling promise.

Here’s how you can build scarcity and FOMO in your webinar promotions:

  • Experiment with limited registration slots or cut-off time for registrations
  • Offer sessions that truly feel exclusive. For example: “The 1 event marketing mantra that the top 5% of CMOs use - and how you can use it too” is way more compelling than a run-of-the-mill title like “5 event marketing mantras to use”.
  • Get video testimonials from attendees who attended previous sessions - social proof of positive experiences always help justify the quality of your sessions.

So to quickly wrap up, creating an irresistible hook, crafting a seamless post-registration experience, stoking the fires of FOMO and tapping into the power of social proof all have the potential to spruce up attendee turnout and repair the wounds of a passionate event marketer’s broken heart!


What to expect from Pavilion’s CMO Summit

Mins Read
Pavi Sagar

The top 3 reasons why Pavilion's CMO Summit is a great event for marketers to attend this year.

We’ve already written about the many events in 2023 that marketers would be interested to attend, but of the many, Pavilion’s  in-person CMO Summit is one to highlight. 

What is Pavilion?

Pavilion is a community-powered learning platform for high-growth professionals such as CEOs, GTM leaders and their teams. The company is known for its learning suite of solutions such as the structured training in Pavilion University, private, moderated peer groups and in-person events, which all aim to help current and future leaders unlock and achieve their professional potential.

When is their CMO Summit?

March 23, 2023

Where is it?

San Francisco, CA

And why should you attend it?

You’ll get a front-row seat to learn from leaders who have succeeded in driving results for their teams. We love that it’s no-nonsense, and straight-to-the-point. This one’s a hidden gem.

Let’s dive into what you can expect from the event.

🎯🔑Expert-led sessions with leaders from Hubspot and Gong

When you attend the Summit, you’ll be in the same room from some of the most knowledgeable minds in the industry, learning strategies and getting advice from bigwigs at top Saas companies like RedHat, Postal, Demandbase, and 6sense. These expert-led educational sessions cover topics like using benchmarking data to build your budget, calculating ROI on marketing efforts, and aligning sales and marketing.

You’ll learn from Kipp Bodnar, CMO at Hubspot, about what he’s learned as part of the team that has grown HubSpot to an $800M company? And from 6sense CMO, Latane Conant about how she (and therefore you) is thinking about budget and CFO alignment, pipeline creation trends and how to adjust in a tough economic climate.

Plus, you’ll hear directly from these leaders too:

  • Udi Ledergor, Chief Evangelist, Gong
  • Kyle Coleman, SVP Marketing, Clari
  • Will Allred Co-Founder, Lavender
  • Stephanie Robotham Value Accelerator Operating Advisor,
    Goldman Sachs Asset Management

Who’d want to miss out on this? Not us, that’s for sure.

🔍📈Deep-dive panels and roundtables

An example of a panel you can attend at the Summit

The CMO Summit’s panels enable you to get different perspectives from industry experts about a topic - it’s essentially access to complimentary consulting, and it’s a huge value. The learnings are further augmented by moderated roundtable discussions with peers.

Here are a couple of panels that we’re looking forward to:

  • How data is fueling results in modern marketing organizations
    In the era of big data, the CMOs that have the biggest impact will be those who embrace the power of analytics. This panel will explore how marketers are using data to get ahead.
  • Positioning to WIN in an Era of SaaS Rationalization
    At a time when buyers are cutting their SaaS spend, this panel will dig deeper into how leading SaaS marketers are using positioning to stand out and drive pipeline.

🤝 Opportunities to network with CMOs + VPs from top brands

At the CMO Summit, you’ll have plenty of chances to connect and network with marketing and demand generation leaders from around the world; there are breaks scheduled during the day as well as a networking happy hour you can look forward to. Additionally, there’s a VIP and All Access Attendee Dinner at the end of the day that you could be invited to attend.

The takeaway

With the industry continuing to evolve at a rapid pace, practitioners must keep pace for their businesses to stay relevant. At Pavilion’s CMO Summit, you’ll be able to learn how to win today’s race whilst running tomorrow’s through insights and advice you can’t get anywhere else.


4 Expert Hacks To Build A Solid Event Feedback Loop

Mins Read
Kishore C S

Want to setup a solid feedback mechanism for your event, but don't know where to start? These four expert hacks are just what you need!

In the world of B2B events, success hinges on much more than simply gathering people in a room. As per our trends report, today’s attendees are hyper-focused on finding tactical value at an event. Hence, the key to making these events truly transformative lies in the feedback loops you design.

In this article, Alex Temple, Senior Corporate Relations Manager at Explori and also a PADI-certified diving instructor will help us ‘dive’ into the nitty gritty of all things feedback.

This is a must-read if you’re looking to design feedback loops that can unlock the full potential of your events.

Let your event objective be your guide

One of the key factors to designing a solid feedback loop is to identify the goal behind your event. Why are you having the event? What do you want to help your attendees achieve through it?

Once you answer these questions, your approach to designing feedback will be more focused and aligned to your event.

“So I think the first thing would be to think about your objectives, design your questions around how we can understand how people have met the objectives that we want them to meet and then designing the survey from there and cutting out things that don't actually matter.” says Alex.

Analyze your event metrics from a holistic point of view

While popular customer experience metrics such as the Net Promoter Score (NPS) are important to track, they need to be viewed with context. Firstly, getting an idea of the current benchmark can help you better understand your NPS. Secondly, it helps to dig into the score and see how many attendees have voted for a particular score - this will help you better improve your events.

Alex illustrates this point with a good example. “So let's have a look at the people who scored six, let's have a look at their comments and if we can bump them up next year into your seven and eight, you know, and your sevens and eights and nines and tens, then all of a sudden you've got this massive switch swing upwards as a positive NPS.”

Talking about having a more complete understand of feedback, he states, “Use NPS as part of a suite of metrics that measure every aspect or different aspects of the event experience and then kind of bring those together so that you can actually look at it from a holistic viewpoint.”

How the 5-step feedback loop methodology can help you get started

For event marketers who are thinking of incorporating feedback into their event strategy, a great place to start is by following the feedback loop methodology, which Alex breaks into five clear steps.

Want better feedback? Always close the loop

When it comes to collecting feedback from attendees, involving them in the process of building their experience can have a significant impact on the quality and honesty of the feedback received. By giving them a sense of ownership in the process, attendees are more likely to provide thoughtful and insightful feedback that can help improve the overall event experience.

To this end, Alex stresses the importance of closing the loop with your audience. “The way to drive response rate and drive engagement with surveys and feedback is to complete that feedback loop.  Once you have decided that you're going to make a change based on what your audience said, tell your audience that that's what you're going to do, don't hide from it.”

So as you see, measuring your events isn't just a nice-to-have, it's a must-have! By showing the value of our events, B2B marketers can secure more budget, create better experiences, and propel businesses forward. 

Prefer to consume your content via audio? Head to our podcast episode with Alex!


No one in the conference has swag(ger) like us: 10 tips to design the best swag kit

Mins Read
Pavi Sagar

Tips on creating a swag kit so impressive they'll keep your business in the minds of other conference attendees long after the event is over.

When Fast Company published a piece by Elizabeth Segran asking if we can ‘finally kill off cheap, disposable conference swag?’, it really struck a nerve.

The promotional products industry body (up in arms) issued a statement challenging the piece’s thesis that people throw away most of the free goodies they receive at events. Twitterati angrily tweeted that the piece was “really out of touch with the industry of giveaways.” And other industry voices chimed in saying that everyone loves promotional products, and that they get the job done.

But Segran’s got a point. 

It’s not that swag should be altogether done away with, only that which is cheap and disposable. Think about it: how many times have you thrown away a free badge or paperweight given to you? The point is that companies need to create merchandise that is so fantastic that they’ll keep your business in the minds of other conference attendees long after the event is over.

However, that’s far easier said than done, especially with challenges around cost and considerations around sustainability in the mix. So we asked Vishal Krishna, Zuddl Designer Extraordinaire, who designed Zuddl’s swag kit for IMEX, for tips on how to create your most memorable swag kit yet.

1. General vs. specific purpose

“The more specific the goals you have in mind when designing your swag kit, the better its effectiveness”, says Vishal. 

In other words, all marketers have the same overarching goals when it comes to swag - namely, increase your brand visibility, awareness + recall, and amplifying lead gen efforts. But when evaluating event swag ideas, you need to unpack your big-picture goals into more specific goals. This will make it that much more actionable.

For instance, ask yourselves:

  • Do you want your brand to drive immediate impact (give attendees something they can use or wear immediately at the conference) or more long-term (something that they can take back and use at the office everyday)?
  • Do you want to be remembered for swag that is completely unique to that of everyone else, or just want to ensure that you’re able to hand something to visitors to your booth?
  • Do you want to give away something to remember you by, or create an experience that keeps them at your booth longer (like a swag spin-the-wheel)?

The answers to these questions will help you shape your swag kit items.

2. Make Mario Kondo’s mantra your own: items must be useful, durable and/or beautiful

You can’t just think of anything, stamp your logo on it and then call it a day. “Ideally, you want the gifts you’re giving attendees to add some value to their lives, or at the least make their day-to-day easier”, points out Vishal.

Examples of useful, branded swag include:

  • Tote bags: Can be extremely effective in driving short and long-term awareness, as attendees can use the bags to carry swag from other businesses at the conference, and use it well after the event ends - maybe for groceries, or for use on your commute. Protip: Don’t put a date on your bag, unless it’s worthy of memorializing.
  • Mobile charges or power banks: There’s nothing worse than your phone suddenly dying on you, and especially on a day that requires you to be using it to take down notes or the numbers of new leads or partners. That’s why a mobile charger or powerbank will be happily received and definitely be used for years.
  • Water bottles: Reusable bottles are a great option as attendees are bound to use it after the event, either taking it to the office or to the gym, promoting your brand to anyone who sees it.
  • Wireless earbuds: Small and high-value — this is something that attendees will want to hold on to.'
Photo credit: Sunjoy
  • Seasonal items: Attendees are bound to pick up and use items that are practical, and relevant to the conference location. For instance, if it’s a winter conference, some warm scarves would be a nice touch, or sunscreen or flip flops at a summer conference.

    As these will all probably make the flight home to attendee’s homes or offices and (hopefully) serve as a reminder of your existence around them for months and years on end, you’ll be getting an incredible amount of mileage from this seemingly benign top-of-the-funnel activity investment.

    In fact, 89% of consumers can recall the brand on a promotional item they received within two years. To quote, Rob Clark, Sr. Director, Insights, Intelligence & Measurement at Proof Strategies Inc, here’s why durable swag matters so much:
We all know which company David would end up recommending

3. Choose items that are highly visible

“There’s no point in making items like stationary (think paper pads, diaries) because they’ll probably just be hoarded and never see the light of day”, says Vishal.

So ideally, your swag items need to be ones that come into contact with/or are seen by a lot of people on a daily basis. Your visibility doesn’t end with the campaign, and keeps going for as long as your products last and are used. It increases your reach and repeats exposure, boosting brand awareness.

Umbrellas, daily-use cosmetics, and stickers are a great example of this type of swag.

Stickers were part of Zuddl's swag kit (Photo credit: Ansh Mehra)

4. Apparel can be a hit or a miss

Tshirt, sweatshirts and sweatpants can seem like a great option to include in your swag kit because they can be worn in many different contexts outside of the event and because by wearing them, attendees act as walking billboards. “However, anything that requires you to customize items based on gender and size can become too complicated very quickly”, says Vishal. Here’s why:

  • Issues with fit - Today, there’s no one-size-fits-all. If your carefully ordered t-shirts arrive and you find that they don’t fit recipients the way you thought it might, it’s a waste of time, money and effort. A promotional t-shirt that doesn’t get worn isn’t really promoting anything.
  • Ordering the right number of sizes is tricky - You might assume that you can just order the same number of small, medium and large sizes but this can cause issues. You might quickly run out of popular sizes, which would mean that some attendees would have to pick from sizes that don’t fit, or don’t receive a t-shirt at all. Or you could be left with a large number of leftover sizes.

5. Make them ergonomic OR go virtual

“Don't’ go for large items,” Vishal warns. Not only will this be a logistical nightmare for you (as you’ll have to oversee shipping/delivery from place of production to the venue), but also for attendees; no one wants to lug around heavy and cumbersome pieces of merch for hours. 

Ideally you want to choose items that are easy to ship and easy to carry. If items are too heavy, too large, or weirdly shaped, they’ll probably be ditched at the venue, hotel room or airport.

You can also opt to give away a virtual swag kit with goodies such as gift cards/vouchers or masterclasses/ebooks/whitepapers/ and other exclusive content. While it might not seem as exciting as something tangible, virtual merchandise comes with a lot of advantages:

  1. No logistical nightmares 
  2. It’s a data goldmine as you can easily track when attendees access the bag or used a gift in it such as gift coupons
  3. It’s more sustainable
  4. It lets you deliver a more personalized experience (see point 6 of this piece)
  5. You can be more creative with the types of gifts you can give. For example, you could give experiences around wellness (gift cards to yoga and fitness classes, discounts to gym memberships) or philanthropy (donations to a relevant charity).
Atlassian gave away donations to charity as swag

6.Go green if possible

More than 60% of consumers in the U.S. want businesses to improve societal and environmental issues (“Millennial and Gen-Z consumers are far more socially conscious than generations that came before” writes Segran in her piece). You can set yourself apart and make a powerful impact by prioritizing intentionality and sustainability in your branded merchandise.

To this end, virtual swag options like the ones we listed before are a good option to be more sustainable.  Alternatively, check to see if you can opt for your items to be made from biodegradable, recyclable or renewable materials. Since many companies still rely on cheap, plastic promotional products, it can be quite simple to stand out from your competitors.

You will need to make a decision about how much you want to invest in your products. Eco-friendly swag can also benefit your business, but it is often more expensive than standard items.

7. And personalize if possible

Everyone loves feeling special, so it’s no surprise that anything personalized leads to better outcomes (80% of consumers are more likely to purchase from brands that provide tailored experiences). But often companies decide to avoid this route as they think it involves a lot of extra effort. It doesn’t need to be. Here are two simple ways to personalize your swag:

  • Let attendees build their own kit: Offering attendees the opportunity to personalize their swag kit can result in big dividends. For example, Postal’s Field Marketing team created branded t-shirt shaped cards that had a QR code on them. When scanned, attendees could access a collection of items that could be customized, such as a tote bag or t-shirt, and which would be sent directly to their addresses.

The effort to personalize paid off, with the gambit delivering 7 opportunities and creating $155k in pipeline for Postal’s sales team.

Here’s another example:

  • Personalize it for them:
    Use registration forms creatively, and insert a few leading questions to help you identify what branded products the attendee will most likely use and benefit from. This could be “How stressful is using 5 different tools to market and run your event?”  If they mark this as ‘high’, include some calming tea or a stress ball in their kit. If they mark this as ‘low’, then give them a branded Rubix cube because they’re already a master of solving complex problems.

8. There’s nothing like a little intrigue to get people to come to your booth

Most companies will give away free stuff, so that alone is not enough to stand out (if that’s your aim from your swag). Try and find something that is unique and creates a memorable brand moment.

Here’s a great example of a creative conference giveaway:

When attendees at a Marketingprofs event reached the venue, they received a swag bag filled with promotional information about exhibition booths in the hall.  

Directive Consulting, a B2B search marketing agency, used that opportunity in an extremely creative way. They gave attendees an exclusive key that could open a safe at their booth which had an  Apple Watch to be won. Naturally, this prompted attendees to go to the booth, resulting in way more traffic than if they had simply given away a brochure. 

It was a genius tactic, because it recreates the same thrill of opening a gift on Christmas morning, or opening a parcel from Amazon. Something attendees won’t forget.

9. Be a careful buyer

While it’s important that you don’t skimp on quality, it’s also essential that you shop around for the best deal. The last thing you want to do is settle for a vendor that doesn’t have your brand color, or won’t send you samples before you make a bulk purchase. 

Resources: Use our swag vendor evaluation checklist to make the right choice.

10. And an even more cautious printer

Now that you’ve got a better idea of what types of items you can put together for your swag kit, we’ll leave you with just a word of caution about what to get printed onto them. “Just stamping your logo onto products won’t do”, says Vishal. “People don’t want to be walking billboards, and they won’t wear products with logos unless the brand is aspirational or a luxury brand. So therefore, you need to incorporate a lifestyle element into your design, or make it relatable in some way, like using a pop-culture reference.”

No one in the conference has swagger like us

With hundreds of businesses competing for attention at a conference, a well-designed swag kit can act as a silver bullet. A single piece of merchandise can generate tens of thousands of impressions, drive heavy booth traffic, and can result in booked meetings as well as a huge increase in opportunity value. It just requires more than choosing any item and slapping your logo on it.The more thoughtfulness you show in creating a useful or fun experience, the further it will take you with attendees. 

Resources: Use our swag vendor evaluation checklist to make the right choice.

Virtual Events

'High Impact Event Tech for 2023' panel: 3 top takeaways

Mins Read
Pavi Sagar

Three intriguing takeaways from a panel about 'High tech, high impact: Event Technology' that featured our Co-founder and CTO, Vedha Sayyaparaju.

Event tech today is nowhere near where it was even 6 months ago — because the industry itself is constantly evolving, and goal posts are continually shifting. Zoom fatigue might have been the primary challenge a year ago, but today it’s creating demand (as per 62% of marketers), and it’ll be something else a few months down the road.

Our Co-founder and CTO, Vedha Sayyaparaju joined other panelists at a recent discussion hosted by NXUnite to speak about High tech, high impact: Event Technology for modern associations and mission-driven businesses. Panelists discussed challenges around tech, and offered insight and advice. Here are the three top takeaways from the talk:

1. Let the goals of your event determine what features you need to look for in an event platform

There’s so much tech nowadays that being able to choose from what’s available can be overwhelming. Start by analyzing your event goals, as this will help you zoom in on where and how technology can help. And this then becomes what you need to look for in the platforms you evaluate, the panelists recommend.

For instance, perhaps your registration is too cumbersome so you would look for platforms that could help with that. “Look at where your inefficiencies are - where are you spending so much time on low return or high risk” said speaker Nikki Bell, Co-Founder at Fundraising Everywhere.

2. But don’t feel pressured to use all the features available on the platform you choose

Echoing an earlier point: there’s so much tech available, and as each platform is always promoting its suite of features, people can feel pressured to use every single feature that is available to them. But this is a mistake.

“You don’t need to use everything,” cautioned Vedha. “All the features on the platform you’re using may not be a fit for the goal of your event or for its agenda. So you need to really first figure out what is the experience you want to curate and then choose features that enable that.”

3. You don’t have to go it alone. Lean on the event community for help

“Be bold”, urged the panelists. Having to navigate the modern event landscape can be scary - the industry is changing as are audiences, but organizers shouldn’t let this discourage them, and can lean on the event community for help. Here’s how:

  • Ask peers for advice: “People are more forthcoming nowadays about their experience hosting events'', Vedha said.” They are more willing to share tactics - what worked and what didn’t.” Your peers in the community are therefore a great resource to turn to, and happy to share what they learned over the past few years. (Click here to join our online community for event professionals!)
  • Work with experienced partners: Working with a company that has worked in turn with many others in the event space can be helpful. “They’ve already seen others through [event hosting] journeys, and can help guide you,” Vedha said. “They can tell you what worked best, and what mistakes to avoid making.”
  • You don’t have to invent the wheel: Attend as many other virtual events as you can and look to ones you enjoyed for inspiration, Vedha recommended. “It’s okay to see what you like at those events and pick up ideas from there. You don’t need to be the first to try something entirely new.”

Want to hear more?

Watch a video recording of the entire panel here!

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.


3 Tips for your Association's next Webinar

Mins Read
Zuddl Staff

Webinars allow your association to bring key resources to members no matter where they are. Use these three strategies to plan your next engaging webinar.

Over the past few years, the events industry has seen a rise in the prevalence of virtual events and webinars. In the association space, meeting online means that association members can still connect and share valuable resources and knowledge even when geographically separated. The success of virtual events in facilitating communication, engaging attendees, and fostering connection has solidified their use. 

Webinars allow your members to reach each other no matter where they are. Additionally, your association can seek out speakers from around the world, helping members make connections with and learn from people they may not otherwise have the opportunity to meet. In addition to providing a space for live connection, you can also record your webinars and upload the videos to your website or association management system to create a comprehensive collection of professional resources.

Your organization can take advantage of these benefits by following the necessary steps to prepare for the webinar, develop engaging content, and promote the event to your members. In this guide, we’ll walk through three strategies you can use to plan and execute a webinar your members won’t want to miss.

Prepare for the webinar

Taking the time to plan and prepare for your webinar is key to ensuring it runs smoothly and your members have a positive experience. But, it can be difficult to know where to start and how to navigate the basics of planning a webinar. Here are a few tips you can use to complete some of these first steps:

  • Selecting topics. Choosing engaging topics is what will capture and keep members’ attention during your webinar. Access to resources and the opportunity to deepen their industry knowledge is a primary reason people why join associations. Offering webinars on relevant educational topics is essential to member recruitment and retention. A good way to get started is to research recent trends, technological developments, or major breakthroughs in your field and select a topic focused on one of those subjects. You could also use your association management software to research past events and determine which topics garner the most attendees.

  • Sourcing speakers. Once you choose a topic, you’ll need to find an expert in your field who can bring their perspective and expertise to the webinar. While there are endless ways to source speakers, you can get started by asking members of your association to speak, requesting that members contact those in their professional network, messaging prospective speakers on platforms like LinkedIn, or using online speaker directories.

  • Planning the agenda. Be sure to plan a detailed schedule that your webinar will follow and share it with everyone involved in the presentation. Estimate how long each section will take and assign times to keep everyone on track, ensuring you start and end on time. It can also be helpful to pad your schedule with a little extra time if you think there’s a chance certain speakers or sections might go over their allotted time or use this time for a Q&A between the speaker and attendees.

Once you create a detailed agenda for the event, organize at least one practice session for everyone who will speak during the webinar. Speakers will have a chance to try out their presentations without any members present, giving them an opportunity to make adjustments ahead of time. Plus, a practice run can help your association iron out any technical issues and other errors ahead of time and create smooth transitions between speakers and topics.

Ask attendees to get involved

A unique challenge associated with virtual events is keeping attendees engaged for the entire webinar to prevent members from dropping from the call early. To engage attendees during virtual webinars, give them the space to add their input and get involved during the webinar. A few ideas to try might include:

  • Using pre-event surveys. Before the event kicks off, upload surveys to your social media pages, your next email newsletter, or through your association management software. Include questions like “which topics would you like to see in future webinars?” or “who are some professionals from the field you would like to hear from?” Then, use these responses to shape the content for the webinar. 

  • Encouraging co-creation. In a business context, co-creation involves collaborating with customers to create a service or product. You can use the principles of co-creation in your next virtual event to turn passive viewers into active, engaged participants. For example, using and engaging with the chat feature allows you and your speaker to gauge members’ responses and field questions throughout the webinar.

  • Adding polls or Q&As. You can use polls or Q&A features, considered to be a part of co-creation, in your webinars to gather important information from members that could shape the direction your webinar will take. For example, you might ask what the top challenge members face in their careers and have the speaker present on the subject that earns the most votes. You can also hold a designated Q&A section of the webinar during which the speaker calls on specific attendees and answers their questions, making them feel recognized and connected with the event.

In addition to these strategies that keep viewers engaged for the entire webinar, consider pushing the most anticipated, exciting part of the virtual event to the very end. In this case, your keynote speaker or the opportunity to ask an industry celebrity a question should be the last thing on the docket.

Leverage social media

Ensuring your webinar is engaging and runs smoothly is essential to providing your members with an enriching, positive experience. To spread the word about your next event to more current and prospective members and to learn what you can improve for future events, make sure to leverage your association’s social media accounts.

Social media is an accessible, affordable, yet highly effective means of promoting conferences, events, and webinars. Announce the event ahead of time on all of your social media pages—generally, you should announce events at least one month in advance to ensure members can fit them into their schedules. As the event draws closer, post additional graphics to remind members to attend along with any other online marketing strategies your association uses.

Once the event wraps up, you can continue to use social media to your advantage. Encourage attendees to post about the event and engage with those posts through your association’s accounts. You can also post impactful clips from the keynote speech or resources from the event to show those who didn’t attend what they’re missing and encourage them to join future events. 

Webinars are an effective tool your association can use to create additional value for its members, especially those who aren’t able to gather in person. With the right virtual event platform and association management tools, you can create a seamless, enriching experience and resource that members can reference again and again.

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.


7 factors to consider while choosing the right marketing conferences to attend in 2023

Mins Read
Pavi Sagar

So many events, so little time - so which ones are most worthwhile to attend? Which ones will drive the most ROI? This guide helps you breakdown how to choose among the many.

We’re firmly in the ‘you can never have too much of a good thing’ camp, especially when it comes to events - and marketing conferences in particular.  

Getting together with marketing peers and experts, learning from each other, and making useful professional connections can be energizing, exciting, and dare we say it ‘fun’?) It’s why we’ve put together a list of top B2B marketing conferences that one can attend in 2023. 

But let’s be honest. The list we’ve put together will only grow longer and longer. 

Photo credit

However, there’s only so many marketing conferences you can attend in a year before your manager looks askance at your time off requests and your expenditure slips. So how, out of hundreds of events, do you choose the ones that will be the best value for your time and money?

The ones that help you prove ROI to your managers (ie. those that help you achieve your goals within your budget).

Here’s how to figure this out/what to take into account when making a case to management:

1.  Your goals

Why do you want to attend this conference? Is it to drive brand awareness? To drive pipeline for your sales team? To get insights and new ideas in your field, and upskill? The answer will determine what type of audience you want to reach and interact with whilst attending the conference.

To this end, do not hesitate to email conference organizers for any information they can share about the attendee profile - industry, company size and location for example, or any other factors that are important to your ICP. At a minimum, ask for a previous year’s attendee list.

2. Location, location, location

In 2022, the event ecosystem evolved to see a co-existence of all formats, so this year you’ll find marketing conferences in a variety of shapes, sizes and formats. For example, while Salesforce’s Dreamforce will be held in-person at San Francisco this year, Adobe’s Summit will be hybrid, with attendees able to join virtually or at the venue in Las Vegas.

So the essential question a la Hamlet is: to travel or not to travel.

Pros: An in-person B2B marketing conference is great for marketers who are hungry to feel part of a crowd, to socialize, collaborate and network via spontaneous watercooler conversations - and thrive from it. Yes, most things can be accomplished virtually, but there is still no substitute for some in-person intangible experiences: a new relationship forged over a drink at a bar near the venue, or a level of trust that’s built from a casual conversation about sports teams or Netflix shows and a handshake for instance. 

Cons: However, putting people on planes is not cheap. And spending that extra dollar for fuel, hotels, food, and drink at the event all adds up. (Plus, for eco-conscious organizations, there’s the environmental cost of transportation to reckon with). Consider whether that amount would be better spent attending a conference or marketing summit that have virtual components.

3. Opportunity cost

Very simply, this is the marketer’s equivalence of FOMO. If you don’t go to the marketing conferences you’ve picked out, what connections or partnerships would be lost? Or what knowledge or skill set would you miss out on? 

For instance, in this age of AI and ChatGPT, marketers who don’t already know how best to leverage these tools are already a step behind the competition. Wouldn’t it be invaluable to hear experts share their successes and cautionary tales? Keep in mind that the average impact for a single cost-saving improvement idea is around $31,043.

It’s not always just a question of, “Is this event worth the money” but also “What would be the qualitative cost to your team? or “Which option gives me the comparative advantage?” which leads us neatly to our next point.

4. Competitors and competitive advantages

Checking to see whether your competitors, or other successful companies that you may look up to attended the marketing conference last year, and whether they were able to drive engagement from it can help you better understand the potential ROI for your business. 

5. Speaking opportunities

If you plan to attend a marketing summit as an attendee, well and good. If you can attend as a speaker, even better. To this end, check the conference website to see if they’ve put out a call for speakers, or send organizers an email explaining your interest leading a session or joining a panel.

This contributes to ROI in many ways:

  1. You can establish yourself and your business as an expert in the industry 
  2. You can reach cross sections of people who are likely to use your products or services an increase brand awareness.
  3. It's a great PR opportunity
  4. While compensation for speaking at conferences varies, at the least organizers will usually waive attendance fee. As they say, a dollar saved is a dollar earned.

6. Exhibiting and sponsorship

Check to see what the exhibition and sponsorship package prices are for any conferences you plan to go to as an attendee. If you’re going to fly halfway around the world to attend the conference, you might as well make the most out of it.


Pros: Exhibiting enables you to increase exposure and connect with prospects on a personal level by letting them experience the product firsthand. 

Cons: However, it’s expensive. Booths are priced as per size and placement so the better options can be pricey, and you’ll also have to pay for add-ons like an internet connection at the booth (yep!). And you need to factor in the costs required for booth design such as banners, standees and swag. These add up, so you should figure them out in advance.


Pros: Based on the sponsorship opportunities available - eg. gift drops at attendee hotel rooms, branding at venue touchpoints, sponsored sessions - you’ll be able to reach and connect with the audience in a way you normally would not be able to. 

Additionally, as a sponsor you usually will receive an attendee mailing list aka the motherlode. 

Cons: There is no guaranteed return on investments because of the complexity involved in attribution; the results of sponsorship are more tenuous than the effect of an ad campaign. The conference audience may or may not remember your brand after the event, and consequently may not follow up on a CTA from an email or a phone call.

7. How much content can you create by attending

You’ve got to be able to squeeze every drop of ROI you can.

So evaluate what kinds of content you can generate from going to the conference, for instance can you write a blog post recapping your experience and learnings from the event (we did this after attending IMEX 2022 - read our piece here). Whilst at the event, can you interview some of the speakers or other leaders of companies attending the conference for your podcast?

The more opportunities you identify to create content from the event that can be used to generate awareness, traffic and pull leads into your funnel, the more compelling the argument to attend.

A short recap/TLDR

As you’ve seen, when evaluating which conferences to attend this year, you’ll need to check the expenses vs. the benefits of attending. While some factors are qualitative and some quantitative, when you get down to the brass tacks, it all comes down to how much pipeline (or how many opportunities) you should be able to generate, and therefore how much you can afford to spend.

The factors that we think should go into your decision-making is not exhaustive, but it's a good start.

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.

Hybrid Events

5 Ways To Map Events To Your Marketing Funnel

Mins Read
Kishore C S

Unlock the full potential of your events with these 5 expert hacks for seamlessly mapping them to your marketing funnel. These tips will elevate your event marketing strategy and drive conversions.

In today's fast-paced business environment, events play a critical role in driving brand awareness, lead generation, and customer engagement. However, with so many different types of events available, it can be challenging to understand how to effectively leverage them to drive marketing success. 

In this post, we'll explore 5 ways to map your events to your marketing funnel to ensure that they are aligned with your overall business goals and objectives by channelling expert insights from seasoned event marketer, Kelsey Taylor, who recently joined us for a webinar as part of our Event Heroes series!

1. Let your event goal dictate your format

One important factor that will help you determine your event format is the objective of your event, says Kelsey. In other words, defining the desired outcome of the event will inform you about which format will help you achieve it best.

“If you're launching a new product or have new features to share, a webinar either pre-recorded or live is a great way to deliver this message especially to your customers.”

2. Use the crawl-walk-run approach to mixing event formats

When asked about whether there’s an ideal stage at which companies should consider mixing up their event formats, Kelsey recommended starting with simple, low-stakes events, and gradually increasing the complexity and scale of events over time. This can help organizations to build the necessary skills and infrastructure to successfully execute larger, more complex events in the future. 


“You can look at what’s working really well across your marketing functions, and where you see places where you can insert something different and test things out.”

3. Think long-term when it comes to attendee experience

When asked about how to create attendees who will want to continually engage with your brand, Kelsey’s pertinent advice was to think beyond just one event and rather view each event as part of a larger audience-building process.

“Continuing to think strategically and take into consideration and take good care of your attendees no matter what they attend will build that obsessive brand for your events.“

4. Your average deal size can help you determine your event budget

While there is no rule of thumb when it comes to setting your event budget in stone, Kelsey recommends using your average deal size as an indicator while formulating your event budget.

“If we're going to have 10 people at an event and an average deal size of let's say ten thousand dollars, we need to have at least double that in the room to make it worth it.”

5. Ensure your event content is actionable

While tracing the evolution of event needs, Kelsey highlighted that the bar for events is much higher compared to pre-COVID times, as attendees have limited time to offer to events, and that they’ll only look for events that give them tactical value.

“We want to ensure that we're delivering valuable actionable insights that they can take back to their teams and implement immediately, again no matter the format. 

There isn't really anything worse than attending an event and really not finding any value in it!”

Want to catch the full conversation? Click here!

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.

Virtual Events

Books and podcasts that every B2B event marketer should check out

Mins Read
Kishore C S

Wondering where to find inspiring, insightful and expert B2B marketing content? We've curated a list of popular B2B books and podcasts that you're sure to love!

As a B2B marketer, staying up-to-date with the latest strategies and best practices is essential to your success. Now, a classic way to do this is by reading renowned books that have helped many a B2B marketer (scroll down to see our top picks!)

But since books may not be everybody’s go-to medium to learn these days, we’ve also curated some super-insightful podcasts that you can listen to no matter where you are! 

So without further ado, let’s get right to it.

 The B2B bookworm’s definitive wishlist:

For our list of must-read books for every B2B marketer, we’ve put together a good mix of thought leadership, actionable takeaways and a generous serving of inspiration. So if you’ve kept your reading habit alive in this digital age, firstly, we salute you! 

Set the mood, put on your reading light and zone out from the rest of the world with any of these valuable reads:

  1. "Predictable Revenue" by Aaron Ross: This book provides a step-by-step guide to building a predictable and scalable B2B sales process. It covers topics such as developing a targeted prospect list, creating a sales script, and using outbound sales to drive revenue.
  1. "The Marketing Performance Blueprint" by Paul Roetzer: The great thing about this book is that it readily offers a framework for improving marketing performance and driving results. It covers topics such as setting marketing goals, measuring success, and creating a culture of continuous improvement.
  1. "The Challenger Sale" by Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson: This book focuses on the importance of challenging the status quo and teaching customers something new in the B2B sales process. It offers strategies for creating value and differentiating yourself from the competition.
  1. "The New Rules of Marketing and PR" by David Meerman Scott: Talk about a true classic in the field of B2B marketing and PR! This book covers the fundamental shift that has occurred in how businesses market and communicate with their audience. Scott provides practical advice on how to use the internet and social media to reach and engage with customers in a more authentic and effective way.
  1. Unleash Possible: A Marketing Playbook that Drives B2B Sales” by Samantha Stone: In this read, Samantha doesn’t just tell you what you need to do in order to facilitate high-growth marketing in a complex selling environment, but also tells you how you can do it. If partnering with sales to get the right results is on top of your priority list (and it should be), this is an important read!


Plug into these podcasts

As of December 2022, podcasts had approximately 424 million listeners worldwide! And it’s no surprise - in this world where convenience is highly regarded, podcasts have the unique ability to permeate into all kinds of daily activity - you can consume podcast content when you’re travelling, on your morning jog, during your drive to work or even when you’re in bed!

Here are the shows that made it to our list:

  1. "The B2B Marketing Show": Tune in to this show to listen to a wide range of B2B marketing topics, including content marketing, lead generation, and sales enablement.
  2. "B2B Growth Show": This podcast is a gem if you’re looking for interviews with B2B marketing experts, entrepreneurs, and business leaders who share their insights on how to grow a B2B business. The hosts cover a wide range of topics, including content marketing, lead generation, sales, and customer acquisition.
  3. "The B2B Revenue Executive Experience": Geared towards B2B sales and marketing professionals, this show features interviews with executives who share their experiences and insights on how to drive revenue growth. The show covers topics such as lead generation, sales enablement, customer experience, and more.
  4. "The B2B Mix Show": This podcast is designed for B2B marketers and features interviews with industry experts and thought leaders who share their insights on the latest trends and best practices in B2B marketing. The hosts cover a wide range of topics, including content marketing, lead generation, social media, and more.
  5. Backstage with Zuddl: Last but not the least, we have our own podcast on B2B events that we totally recommend. Since events are going to be a core part of driving revenue in 2023, we highly recommend you tune into our show to get on-ground insights from marketing leaders in the event industry. To start with, check out our super-popular episode with special guest Emily Kramer, co-founder of MKT1.

So there you have it, folks! Whether you prefer to learn through reading or listening, these books and podcasts offer valuable insights and strategies for B2B marketers looking to stay ahead of the game!

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.


Best B2B Marketing Conferences to Attend in 2023

Mins Read
Pavi Sagar

If you're a B2B marketer, here are the events you should be attending in 2023.

2023. This new year brings B2B marketers the opportunity to be better and do better than last year.  This means that over the next 365 days, you can:

  • catch up on everything you avoided learning in 2022
  • sharpen your skills
  • learn from the smartest people in the industry

There are a variety of ways to do this based on your learning style - you can read articles or LinkedIn threads online, listen to a podcast or attend some of the best B2B marketing events throughout the year. The perks? Based on the format of the event, it’s highly probable that you won’t have to travel, you can eschew awkward small talk, no one can tell if you’re wearing PJs whilst attending, and you’ll come away with insights and skills that create a competitive advantage in the modern digital climate.

While there are plenty of b2b events in 2023 you could attend, we’ve whittled the list down to those we think are worth your time and attention.

<p><a href="#jan-b2b" >January 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#feb-b2b" >February 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#march-b2b" >March 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#april-b2b" >April 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#may-b2b" >May 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#june-b2b" >June 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#july-b2b" >July 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#aug-b2b" >August 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#sep-b2b" >September 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#oct-b2b" >October 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#nov-b2b" >November 2023 events</a></p>

<p><a href="#dec-b2b" >December 2023 events</a></p>

<span id="jan-b2b"><h2>JANUARY</h2></span>

Lead Generation World

When: Jan 8-10

Event type: In-person - San Diego

Why attend: The first recommendation in our event calendar is Lead Generation World. This b2b event brings together practitioners and experts in the field to help advertisers and lead buyers successfully navigate the lead generation ecosystem.

Attendees can expect to receive highly targeted and insightful content alongside exclusive networking opportunities with companies that can support their efforts.

<span id="feb-b2b"><h2>FEBRUARY</h2></span>

Global Virtual Martech Summit: Conceptualising the Future of MarTech

When: February 27 - March 1

Event type: In-person - Scottsdale, Arizona

Why attend: The three day b2b event features 80+ sessions and 20+ case studies around ABM, content strategy, demand generation, sales enablement and more, giving marketers practical hands-on insight into a variety of use-cases, and encouragement on what can be achieved.

This year, attendees can learn from inspirational marketing leaders such as:

  • Arthur Castillo, Head of Dark Social & Evangelism at Chili Piper
  • Carl Ferreira, Director of Sales at Refine Labs
  • Dan Cafiero Senior Program Manager, ABM and Paid Media at Seagate
  • Justin Keller VP Revenue Marketing at Drift

All signs point to a highly educational and value-driven experience, that should be one of the top among the b2b events in 2023 you’d want to attend.

<span id="march-b2b"><h2>MARCH</h2></span>

Social Media Marketing World

When: March 13-15

Event type: In-person - San Diego, CA

Why attend: As its name suggests, this event is targeted towards digital marketers and social media professionals looking to discover the best insider secrets and the latest trends, and to learn strategies and tools that will help grow their business. Here’s a glimpse of some of the sessions that will be held, and the speakers leading the discussions:

  • Organic social marketing: How to Use LinkedIn Content to Achieve Meaningful Business Growth - Instructor: Daniel Kading
  • Paid social marketing: The Short-Form Video Sales Letter: How to Sell More With Instagram and Facebook Ads - Instructor: Allie Bloyd
  • Content marketing: Mastering YouTube Audience Development: Tips From the Pros - Instructor: Derral Eves
  • Social strategy: How to Use AI Tools to Greatly Improve Your Marketing - Instructor: Paul Roetzer

It’s a b2b event where content marketers will find tactical, no-fluff information that you're not going to learn anywhere else in the world.

Adobe Summit

When: March 21-23, 2023

Event type: Hybrid - Las Vegas and virtual

Why attend: Adobe’s conference made it onto our b2b events to attend in 2022 article, and our events in 2023 list would be incomplete without it. The 3-day conference empowers attendees to discover the latest trends with more than 200 sessions and hands-on labs across 11 tracks, from juggernaut speakers across industries. 

There’s something for all stripes of B2B marketers this year, from content marketers to commerce practitioners:

Attendees will have the ​​chance to connect directly with peers and leaders from the world’s top brands. 2023’s speakers have yet to be announced, but previous speakers include:

  • Shantanu Narayen, chairman and CEO of Adobe
  • Rosalind Brewer, CEO of Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc.
  • John Donahoe, President and CEO of NIKE
  • Deborah Wahl, Global CMO at General Motors

Bonus: Adobe also hosts a pre-conference two days before the Summit kicks off, during which you can learn more about Adobe Experience Cloud solutions.

We love the tracks’ focus and exciting speakers - it really doesn’t get better than that.

CMO Summit

When: March 23

Event type: In-person - San Francisco, CA

Why attend: The Summit by Pavilion aims to help marketers learn the newest strategies and best practices they need to know in order to drive revenue through marketing efforts. 

Attendees can expect:

  • Expert-led educational sessions, covering topics like using benchmarking data to build your budget, calculating ROI on marketing efforts, aligning sales and marketing
  • Hands-on workshops to help you understand your approach to brand building
  • Opportunities to network with CMOs and VPs of Marketing and Demand Generation from around the world

By attending this b2b event, you’ll get a front-row seat to learn from leaders who have succeeded in driving results for their teams. We love that it’s no-nonsense, and straight-to-the-point. This one’s a hidden gem.

<span id="april-b2b"><h2>APRIL</h2></span>

The Gathering Marketing Summit

When: April 26-29

Event type: Hybrid - In-person at Banff, Canada, and there’s a Gathering Global Online Pass available to let attendees experience content on-demand from home

Why attend: Whilst there are many reasons to attend this Summit (not least its name, location or intriguingly designed event page), at number one would be how it is billed: a safe space for business and marketing professionals to unite for inspiration, application and celebration.

Attendees are in for 3 days of 20+ workshops, keynotes and intimate Q&As from 50+ thought leaders and 12 award-winning brands.

<span id="may-b2b"><h2>MAY</h2></span>

Strategic Marketing 2023 - Reuters Events

When: May 8–9

Event type: San Diego, USA

Why attend: The conference aims to be a global platform to inspire and empower marketing leaders to map the digital DNA of your consumer, foster brand loyalty and community, and unlock innovation.

And who better to learn from than this roster of A-listers from the industry!

  • Shannon Watkins, CMO, Jordan Brand at Nike 
  • Kellyn Smith Kenny, Chief Marketing & Growth Officer at AT&T 
  • Adrian Fung, Global CMO at eBay
  • Sophie Bambuck, CMO of The North Face 
  • Chris Brandt, CMO of Chipotle 
  • David Skena, Global Chief Brand Officer of Krispy Kreme 
  • Michelle Ganslem, VP, Global Insights and Analytics of McDonald’s

The event focuses on 4 key themes: Strategic Leadership and Growth, Brand Loyalty, Community, and Purpose, Engaging Content and Innovative Storytelling and Data Connectivity & Creativity. Each theme features insightful sessions that guarantee attendees leave with valuable insights. Here’s an example:

With delivering value at the heart of all activities and sessions at the event, Strategic Marketing 2023 doesn’t fail to impress. Definitely one of the top B2B marketing events in 2023 you won’t want to miss.

Gartner Marketing Symposium/Xpo 2023: Marketing’s New Directive: Reprioritize, Rethink, Realign

When: May 22 – 24

Event type: In-person - Denver, CO

Why attend: The Gartner Marketing Symposium is a gathering for marketing leaders to advance their thinking as strategic leaders and learn cutting-edge marketing practices to drive efficient growth. The 2023 agenda is filled with tracks for CMOs and marketing executives, customer experience and loyalty leaders, marketing operations and analytics leaders, as well as digital marketing leaders.

Here’s a glimpse of what to expect:

Sessions will be led by the world’s leading marketing experts. 

While this year’s line-up is still being finalized, if it’s anything like 2022’s roster (Julie Sweet, Chair and CEO, Accenture, General David H. Petraeus, Director, CIA (2011-2012), Nicole Malachowski, First Woman Thunderbird Pilot, and Mike Krzyzewski, Head Men's Basketball Coach, Duke University (1980 – 2022), attendees are in for a very exclusive experience.

Customer Marketing Summit

When: May 24 - 25

Event type: Las Vegas

Why attend: Whether you’re a beginner or the leader of your team, you’ll leave with the insight you need to elevate your role through a three-pronged approach:

  • Learn via interactive sessions that support you with the tactics, methods and strategies you need to know
  • Discover tech solutions that can amplify your efforts and effectiveness
  • Join a community to form genuine connections and create valuable relationships.

We love this holistic approach, especially since as an attendee, you’ll be rubbing shoulders with professionals from the world’s largest companies and most exciting startups such as Slack, Square, Adobe, Cisco, Ebay, Hubspot, Stripe, Amazon, Google, Deliveroo, Meta and Salesforce.

Sign us up!

<span id="june-b2b"><h2>JUNE</h2></span>

B2B Summit North America - Forrester

When: June 5-7

Event type: Hybrid: In-person at Austin,TX,  and Virtual

Why attend: Forrester’s B2B Summit empowers professionals with the information and insight they need to make bolder, smarter decisions in a turbulent 2023 landscape. The b2b event is laser-focused on giving marketing professionals actionable insights that they can put to use immediately to improve the bottom-line.

To this end, the event has more than 100 role-based sessions aligned to the priorities of B2B marketing and sales executives and leaders in ABM, sales enablement, product marketing, digital demand, channel marketing etc. There will be marketing opportunities to help professionals find the right solution provider for marketing needs. And there are also networking opportunities to help professionals connect with peers facing similar challenges.

It’s everything you need to know about b2b marketing in 2023 in one go.

SaaStr Europa 2023

When: June 6-7

Event type: In-person - London, England

Why attend: SaaStr is the b2b event to attend for anyone who works in SaaS, and is attended by 10,000+ SaaS executives, founders, and VCs. Over two days, attendees can take part in:

  • 100+ workshops and sessions
  • 1,000 brain dates and mentorship sessions
  • Meet-A-VC 1:1 meetings

This one’s a definite ‘yes’ when you’re trying to decide which b2b events in 2023 you should attend.

<span id="july-b2b"><h2>JULY</h2></span>

Hero Conference

When: July 18 & 19

Event type: In-person - London

Why attend: The aptly named ‘Hero Conference’ brings attendees into the same room with visionaries in the industry to learn from their victories and mistakes. 

There will be deep-dives into developments in the world of digital marketing, from SEM to PPC, led by industry juggernauts. Previous event edition speakers have included:

  • John Chen, Sr. Product Manager of online-to-offline solutions at Google
  • Tor Thomson, EMEA Regional Director of Bing Ads
  • Michael Akkerman, Head of Marketing Partners at Pinterest
  • Bryan Sise, Product Marketing Team Lead at Twitter
  • Puja Ramani, Head of Marketing at Quora

With 4 concurrent tracks available, which means you can always find a hyper-relevant session + important product and service announcements from the biggest brands in the industry + the opportunity to network with professionals to learn what works in other industries, there’s no doubt that this event is a key resource for staying in front of the latest trends in digital marketing.

<span id="aug-b2b"><h2>AUGUST</h2></span>


When: August 7-9

Event type: In-person - Seattle, WA

Why attend: MozCon bills itself as ‘Not Your Typical Marketing Conference’ and one look at their three-day event agenda will convince you to sign right up. Each day is filled with a great mix of activities - non-stuffy networking sessions, breaks for meals, and expert sessions delivered by the best and brightest in SEO, search marketing, mobile, conversion optimization, local search, and more. Here’s a quick glance:

<span id="sep-b2b"><h2>SEPTEMBER</h2></span>

SaaStr Annual 2023

When: September 6-8

Event type: In-person - SF Bay Area

Why attend: SaaStr, as everyone one in the B2B marketing world knows, is the world's largest SaaS community event on the planet, bringing together cloud and SaaS professionals from around the globe to learn from the top founders, VCs and execs in SaaS. From the CEOs of Slack and Zoom, to the founders of Datadog and Atlassian, to break-out leaders from Calendly to Flexport, everyone who's anyone comes to SaaStr.

In 2022, the event drew 10,101 attendees across 3+ days. 12,750 mentorship connections were made. 1,931 Braindates and mentorship sessions were hosted. There were 324 VCs in and 457 Founders in the Meet-a-VC Program. Plus, everyone let loose at a party hosted by DJ Duke Dumont!

2023 looks to take things up a notch with more speakers, workshops, Braindates and more. Here's what to expect this year:


When: September 5-8

Event type: In-person - Boston, MA

Why attend: Forbes called Hubspot’s annual event ‘Inbound’, “A must-attend b2b event for agency owners and marketing professionals”, so who are we to argue. The event is one of the world's largest marketing conferences, with 26,000 +  attendees from 110 countries taking part. 

The three day event always has tracks for Marketing, Sales, Customer Success, HubSpot Academy, and RevOps, with each featuring workshops by industry experts, fun activities, and opportunities to network. And the event always pulls in the biggest names in the world. Past speakers have included:

  • Barack Obama, 44th president of the United States
  • Viola Davis, Academy Award, Primetime Emmy Award, and two Tony Award winner
  • Dr. Jane Goodall, primatologist and anthropologist
  • TJ Adeshola, Head of Content Partnerships at Twitter

With speakers like these and session topics that cater to all types of B2B marketers, the conference is truly a value-driven source of knowledge and inspiration. 


When: September 12–14

Event type: In-person - San Francisco

Why attend: Salesforce's massive event pulls in tens of thousands of attendees every year to a temporary “national forest” in San Francisco. And it's no surprise why. Dreamforce always features a speaker lineup of heavy-hitters and A-listers. Just look at 2022's roster:

Furthermore, with 1000+ sessions to choose from, there's no doubt you will be able to learn from some of the brightest minds and biggest thought leaders in your industry. According to a survey conducted by Salesforce, 87% of Dreamforce attendees learned something that helped to accelerate company growth, while 86% solved an organizational challenge with learnings from the event. You can't argue with those results!

Early-bird tickets are already available for 2023. Stay tuned for speaker and session announcements!

Traffic & Conversion Summit 2023

When: Sept 27-29

Event type: Hybrid: In-person in San Diego, and Virtual

Why attend: ‘Everything has changed AGAIN’ states T&C’s event website (entertainingly), and therefore the b2b event brings together the world’s smartest marketers. (flattery always works) to learn what’s new, what’s hot, and what’s actually working RIGHT NOW in digital marketing. 

Attendees can expect  a deep dive into evergreen pain points and channels, such as

  • New traffic channels
  • New selling models
  • Conversion breakthroughs

It’s the perfect opportunity for marketers to have the content, customer-centric conversations they need to be at the forefront of the ever-evolving world of marketing.

<span id="oct-b2b"><h2>OCTOBER</h2></span>

2023 ANA Masters of Marketing Conference

When: October 24 – 27

Event type: Hybrid: In-person at Florida, and Virtual 

Why attend: The b2b marketing conference showcases the creative thinking and inspirational strategies that the world’s top CMOs and leading brands have implemented to meet and exceed their customer needs, drive growth, and inspire change. Previous editions have featured C-suite leaders from United Airlines, Verizon, Ford, American Express, AB InBev, P&G,  Shell, PepsiCo, and more. 

<span id="nov-b2b"><h2>NOVEMBER</h2></span>

Product Marketing Summit

When: TBA

Event type: In-person - Chicago

Why attend: PMM peers can come together for 2 days of networking, knowledge-sharing, keynotes, roundtables, and more. As an attendee, you will learn to 

  • Supercharge your go-to-market strategy
  • Nail your product-market fit, understanding key personas and utilizing segmentation
  • Measure PMMs impact and proving value across your org amongst other topics.

PMM professionals can expect to learn from leaders in the industry (previous editions have featured Tim Carr, Head of Oracle Advertising Product Marketing at Oracle,  Natasha Janic,  Senior Product Marketing Manager and Loyalty Management at Salesforce Josh Bean Senior Director, Product Marketing at Zendesk, and Divya Mehra Director of Product Marketing Expedia Group). 

<span id="dec-b2b"><h2>DECEMBER</h2></span>

Stay tuned as organizers announce dates for events such as the 2023 ANA B2B Marketing Conference, and Digital Summit regional conferences.

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.

Virtual Events

6 insanely smart user conference promotion hacks

Mins Read
Pavi Sagar

Work smarter, not harder. Use these 6 hacks (+ ready-to-use email templates)to send the registration and attendance numbers for your user conference through the roof.

We’re not quite sure who came up with the phrase "If you build it, they will come”, but clearly it was not a B2B marketer in the 21st century. 

In this era, markets are already saturated, competition is fierce, and people are extremely picky with where they choose to spend their attention and money. There is just no scenario today in which you can organize a user conference, and simply expect people to flock to your proverbial doors. 

So, as with all things B2B, you’re going to need a well-thought-out plan, consistent monitoring, quite a lot of co-ordination, and a couple of excel sheets to get the results you want for your user conference, but it’ll be well the effort (just ask anyone who’s won Product Of The Day on Product Hunt #IYKYK). To this end - and to provide you with even bigger results - use the following 6 proven promotional hacks to maximize your event registration and attendance results.

Let’s get started.

Insane Hack #1:Start promoting your user conference 6-8 weeks before the event

Ideally, you need to start about 8 weeks before the date of your event - yes, we know, it’s tempting to think that that’s too early to start talking about the conference, but trust us, the earlier the better. Just ask Haptik!

By choosing your event promotion timeline carefully, you can maximize awareness, and increase attendance at your user conference. Break down action items into monthly, and weekly tasks - this will make it easier to execute, monitor, and optimize. Here’s a sample timeline to follow:

To make sure you’re staying on schedule, create a tracker - we've made a handy one for you here including ready-to-go email templates for all your blasts and follow-ups, thank us later).

Keep an eye on your metrics to see which activities are performing the best so you can double-down on them, and which ones are lagging behind, so you can pay a little more attention to those.


Insane Hack #2: Have event specific branding

Three people hold a pencil symbolizing event branding above their head

Don’t be complacent. It’s tempting to just use the company logo and colors for your event branding, but getting your design team to come up with a unique, event-only brand that stands out is well worth the effort. Keep in mind that your target audience is already attending a couple of events every month - and probably a few every week! Great event branding helps to distinguish yours from all the others out there, and makes the experience cohesive and memorable.

Here are examples of great event branding for user conferences:

IBM’s ‘Think’ 

The conference brings together IBMers and experts from different fields for a variety of workshops, experiences, networking, talks, and education. The event branding for the conference aims to align with different business units and narratives, but expresses the journey from individual components to large-scale solutions and insightful discoveries.

Image: Melissa Miyamoto-Mills

Salesforce’s ‘Dreamforce’

One of the largest global conferences held, Dreamforce connects their community for three days of learning and sharing knowledge, networking, and getting inspired to ‘blaze their own trail’ - attendees are playfully known as "Trailblazers". 

The event branding follows this thread, featuring national park-themed decor and design  - tree canopies for a 100ft. forest installation for instance, or staff members dressed up as Park Rangers - that is high-tech, creative, unique, and definitely so distinct that it leaves its competitors in the dust.

Image: Amanda Cheung

The moral of these examples is to go big on your event branding. Sure, it’s more work, but will help you deliver your message more effectively and emotively, and drive the attention and footfall you need.

Insane Hack #3: Show with video

A rocketship symbol rises from a laptop whilst on the side a hand pushes a launch button

B2B marketers who use videos in their campaigns see a 34% higher conversion rate, so it’s a no-brainer to incorporate them into your promotional activities. And here are even more compelling reasons to use video in your event marketing:

  • Adding video to a single promotional event email can increase click rates by 300%
  • 7 out of 10 B2B buyers watch a video during the buyer journey
  • People are 27 times more likely to click on an ad if its video in comparison to a static banner.

Now that the case for use is quite clear, let’s narrow down the different types of videos you can create to drive interest and engagement:

  • Teaser videos: Showcasing what attendees can expect at the event is a great way to leverage FOMO to persuade those on the fence about registering for the conference. These will be especially useful in email marketing. 
  • Recap videos: If your company has already hosted a user conference, video highlights of the event will remind those who attended the first time around why they should return for the second edition, and via social proof, nudge prospective attendees into registering. A great example of this is Adobe’s Max 2022 hybrid event video recap, which captures the warmth, creativity, energy and community spirit at the event. Watch it here

         MozCon’s video recap is another fantastic example, especially since it features testimonials by previous attendees. Watch it here.

  • Invitation videos by speakers: Getting your speakers to introduce themselves and what they’ll be discussing at the event can go a long way toward building credibility and confidence in your user conference, and the value attendees can gain by showing up. Here’s an example of this in practice - Emily Kramer, Co-founder of MKT1, introduces herself and invites B2B marketers to join her talk.

The key is to use a variety of video content to attract the attention of your target audience, and then use it to connect with emotion and empathy with prospective attendees.

Insane Hack #4:  Make it easy to spread the word

A loudspeaker that pours out 'fave' icons

With basics in place such as using an event hashtag in your social media posts, you’ll be able to catapult visibility and awareness of your user conference. But to boost efficacy, use a social wall.

A social wall is a feed of aggregated user-generated content in real-time, pulled from across a variety of social media platforms. Adding it to your conference can pay off seriously down the road.

  • Amplifies event reach: Each tweet or post share spotlighted on the social wall motivates attendees to keep posting, which strengthens visibility and awareness.
  • Stokes FOMO: Showcasing memorable moments can  generate a sense of excitement and urgency, which can entice last-minute holdouts to join the event. 

This is one of the easiest tools at your disposal to help you draw more attention, so make sure that your event platform partner has the capability to showcase user-generated content from the event on social media.

Insane Hack #5: Rope in speakers for promotions

We mentioned this earlier in Hack #1 but it bears repeating: your speakers are one of the best event influencers you have at your disposal. Thanks to their credibility and reach, they can be the catalyst that makes your conference the ‘must attend’ event of the quarter. But for this to work, you need to make it as easy as possible for them to promote the conference. Here are a couple of things you can do to that end:

Insane Hack #6: Get CS and Sales teams to reach out to customers and prospects respectively

Two work professionals running towards a gold cup

Create a leaderboard to incentivize sales and customer success to increase the number of registrations for the event.

By adding competition and recognition as additional motivation for sales and customer success colleagues, you can ensure that you’re getting more of the right people to your user conference. And with attribution in place, you can also track which AE was responsible for driving the most attendee registration

This cross-functional collaboration will help keep the entire company’s eyes on opportunities to rope in more attendees. Alignment across teams is challenging, but one of the most effective ways to improve promotion results.

Protip: Don’t just rely on your CS and Sales team to drive registrations. Get everyone in the company involved! But make it easy on everyone by making a little kit/drive where everyone has easy access - include essentials like creatives they can post, a hashtag they can use.

Promoting your conference effectively requires smart strategy

A clearly defined promotional plan that thoughtfully utilizes your resources is really the key to getting all the right people to your user conference. You may have to tweak your strategy as you go along, but as long as you have a schedule that covers your bases and the backing of different teams in the company, you’ll be able to generate the results you want.

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.

Virtual Events

How to Build an Agenda: 8 proven tips to make your user conference memorable

Mins Read
Pavi Sagar

A user conference agenda needs to be a careful balance of activities that deliver value for customers and the company. These 8 tips will tell you how to get it exactly right.

Have you been in a situation where you had a killer idea for a user conference, and you were sure the agenda would drive registrations in the thousands (ok hundreds! We’re no SaaStr!)? But the audience response was a lukewarm ‘meh!’?

Nothing crushes the spirit of an event marketer like poor registration (and poor turnout!), and event folks are pretty darn tough!

Most of the times when we look at building an agenda for an event, we are put in topics and themes, and panel discussion ideas that we think are of interest to the audience. But it’s more nuanced than that. A user conference agenda needs to be a careful balance of activities that deliver value for customers and the company, for instance track learning as well as product updates, roundtable discussions as well as talks by customers. 

Let us look at some tricks to building an agenda that will guarantee a fantastic user conference.

1. See how other companies are doing it

review other companies

Not just competition, look at how other companies are building agendas. Afterall, inspiration can strike from anywhere. And wasn’t it Picasso who said “good artists borrow, great artists steal.”? No, we are not advocating you lift an entire agenda off someone’s event, but it is certainly a good place to start looking for ideas. 

Taking a look at how other B2B companies have curated their agendas allows you to discover speakers, session topics and trends that you should be familiar with but have slipped your radar, as well as to see how they’re organizing the conference days.

Take for example SaaStr 2022’s agenda. (SaaStr Annual  is one of the largest B2B conferences in the world, every year bringing together 10K+ founders and entrepreneurs to learn what’s new, what’s changed, and what’s a secret in the space.)

The conference usually has something for everyone - a startup owner seeking advice on how to scale their business, a company looking for a niche B2B software solution, or your everyday B2B marketer wanting to refine their ABM strategy. The 2022 event agenda reflects this, with tracks dedicated to Growth, Scaling, Customer Success, and Team Management. 

SaaStr 2022's agenda
SaaStr 2022's agenda is a great example of clever curation

You’ll notice that each track offers a blend of 

  • Keynote sessions
  • Masterclasses and workshops
  • Networking
  • Mentoring sessions

So, for instance, a Revenue Leader at Saastr 2022 could attend plenty of tactical sessions from world-known founders, and Q&A rounds. 

  • 10 Lessons Learned Scaling to $1B Valuation with Drift's Co-founders
  • Growth Day Q&A (with Alogolia’s CEO Bernadette Nixon and CRO Michelle Adams, Zendesk’s SVP Global Marketing Prelini Udayan-Chiech, and SaaStr’s GM and SVP Amelia Ibarra)
  • Scaling Revenue in 2022: What’s the Same and What's Different? with Confluent's President
  • Revenue Alignment: How to Pull Marketing, Sales, Customer Success Together with Divvy's CRO
  • How to Scale a Platform and Ecosystem to $10B with Atlassian's CRO

The agenda is organized so well that each day drives new learning, new connections and immeasurable value for different persona types  - as should yours.

But keep this caveat in mind:  Because a competitor did it, and it was well received does not mean that a similar agenda would work for our audience as well. Your audience is yours for a reason - you offer them something no one else does - your viewpoint. 

2. Send out before-event surveys to gauge attendee interest in session topics

Conduct before event survey

Getting your attendees to weigh in on what kind of content they want to consume, and what they’re expecting to take away from your event is exactly the direction you need to build an interesting and valuable event agenda. To this end, you can conduct a simple poll on LinkedIn or check in with your Sales and Customer Success colleagues about what customers are asking about, or even post in relevant Slack communities.

You can also gauge interest by customizing your registration form, as illustrated here:

Customized registration form
Source: Dribbble

Protip: An alternative to the text box shown in the example above is to let attendees pick the session topics they are most interested in, using a multiple-choice format. You can then use this insight to plan additional panels or discussion rooms in the agenda, and create more targeted marketing materials to hand out during the event. 

PS. Involving attendees from the get-go displays thoughtfulness and commitment from the organizer’s side, and can translate to a higher level of engagement.

3. Keep event sessions length to 45 minutes with breaks in between

Include breaks in between events

Your attendees are going to lose focus and energy if your webinars and event sessions last longer than a typical Netflix show episode, so it's best practice to keep them between 30 or 45-60 minutes long.  

Within each webinar or event session, set aside time for an introduction, then at least 25-30 minutes for the main speech/presentation, followed by time for Q&A. Here’s an example of a structure to follow:

Session breaks sample

How to plan in breaks for virtual conferences

Schedule regular breaks in between sessions, ideally 5-10 minutes long. 

This enables attendees to:

  • Stretch their legs to stave off ‘Zoom fatigue’
  • Check their email and mobile messages so they aren’t distracted during a session
  • Replenish the brain’s stores of attention and motivation
  • Return to the event energized and focused

Protip: Arrange wellness or fun  activities such as yoga or meditation or even a game like a scavenger hunt during some breaks as “palate cleansers" to make your event more memorable and fun.

Here’s an example of session durations at SaaStock. As you can see, they can be as short as 20 minutes.

SaaStock sample
Source: SaaStock

4. Arrange sessions by ‘tracks’

Arrange sessions by tracks

As seen with Saastr, sometimes there are hundreds of sessions at a conference. Using tracks lets you group them under different umbrella topics - and importantly, make them visible on the agenda. This makes it easier for attendees to navigate the agenda.

As an example, here’s how Kaltura used tracks at their Virtually Live! event. 

Kaltura sample
Source: Kaltura

Event sessions are grouped under larger topics such as branding, ROI, and data. Attendees can jump from one track to another, but grouping them as such makes it easier to understand the agenda, and make a choice on what sessions to attend.

5. Catchy session titles can make a difference

Create catchy session titles

This might seem like a low-priority tip compared to some of the other points in this article, but you may be surprised to find out that it's actually one of the most effective. 

If you talk to your email marketing colleague or the copywriter in the team, they’ll no doubt tell you the difference a well crafted subject line or phrase can have in driving people to take an action. The same principle applies here.

Taking a little bit of extra effort to make your session titles more catchy and creative can make your event agenda that bit more memorable and entice more attendees to attend them. Rocketlane's Propel 22 conference for customer onboarding and implementation professionals is a stellar example, with session topics so catchy that they immediately grip your attention, yet provide enough context to make you want to attend.

Rocketlane sample
Source: Rocketlane

Protip: A simple way to approach session titles is to make it as specific as possible about a problem, a challenge, or a goal.

6. Schedule your most in-demand speakers for the beginning and the end of the day

Schedule event speakers with Zuddl

To start strong, schedule your most important speakers at the beginning of the day. They’ll be able to energize your audience and set the tone for the rest of the day, leaving them excited and interested for what is to come.

Similarly, by scheduling a high-profile speaker for the last session of the day, you can leave attendees uplifted and inspired to return for more the next day.

7. Plan in time for attendees to network and socialize

Networking opportunities with Zuddl

Aside from breaks between sessions, it’s important to give attendees the opportunity to meet one another, chat, mingle and make a new friend, business connection, or even a new investor - you just never know where a conversation will take you.  To this end, it’s a must for you to organize breakout and/or networking sessions during the event schedule. 

Here’s an example of how Private Equity International built in some networking time during their CFOs & COOs Forum New York 2022.

PEI events sample
Source: PEI Events

Breakout rooms: Virtual rooms in which attendees can gather can be used as spaces for socialization - for instance, you can name Rooms after topics related to the event theme, that are sure to bring together ‘birds of a feather’ groups.

Networking sessions: Use AI-powered matchmaking to connect with attendees with like-minded or complimentary goals and interests eg. investors, and startup owners. 

Protip: Energy levels can flag in the middle of the day, after lunch, and in the middle of the evening. Scheduling breakout and networking sessions around these times can help to get attendees energized and ready to go again.

A well crafted agenda is non-negotiable

A well-crafted user conference agenda can go a long way to driving up attendance and participation rates. Put a little bit more effort and time when building your own (with the tips from this article), and you’re sure to see it pay off.

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.


Team Zuddl’s Experience at IMEX America 2022

Mins Read
Ketan Pandit

We've shared our on-ground learnings and tips based on our experience of attending IMEX 2022 to help you prepare for any large-scale conference!

IMEX is one of the largest gatherings for event people across the globe. Thousands of event planners, producers, Professional Conference Organizers (PCOs), Destination Management Companies (DMCs) and event tech people from across the world gather at IMEX to find partners, figure out the next big thing in event management and check out the latest in tech powering events. IMEX America 2022, held in Las Vegas, was Zuddl’s first trade show event as sponsor participants.

Unified event platform Zuddl at IMEX America 2022

Here are some of the highlights from IMEX America 2022:

  1. The event was organized at the Mandalay Bay Convention center. That is a whopping 2.1 million square feet of meeting and event space. To give you a sense of the size of the venue, TWO mega events were running in parallel - IMEX America, and ExpCon Reality - both with thousands of attendees, and it didn’t feel like we were in each other's way.
  2. Large trade shows like the IMEX take months of planning, organizing and strategizing before they come to life. This was evident in a mostly incident-free four days, which is a remarkable feat anyway you look at it.
  3. We were averaging about 18,000 steps a day exploring the event. Even though we had a booth to manage, we wanted to seek inspiration for our events down the line. There’s always an opportunity to learn and grow.
  4. IMEX America saw about 12,000 attendees, out of which a majority, say 60%, were destinations. So you could literally walk down from Boston to Puerto Rico to Canada, in the same aisle!
  5. Another 30 percent were hotels and venues that wanted to be the destination of choice for buyers.
  6. The remainder were event tech vendors, like Zuddl, with tools and platforms that support event execution. 

Who is the IMEX for?

I'm glad you asked. 

When you participate in a third party event, your goals could be one of two broad things - brand awareness and/or generating leads. Or you could be at an event just to meet your existing customers. Either way, choosing the right event is crucial to get a positive ROI.

Virtual event platform Zuddl ar IMEX America 2022

At IMEX America, you will meet a lot of event planners, and associations. So if event planners and associations are your ICP, IMEX is the place to be. You’ll be meeting independent event organizers as well as large event consulting organizations. Between them, they run events of any scale - from a 100 attendee get-togethers to over 15000 attendee concerts!

Another fantastic takeaway from IMEX was the hundreds of event destinations to choose from. If you are tasked with shortlisting venues for your next in-person or hybrid event, then you’ll find a lot of options to consider at IMEX. 

With a lot of event tech vendors in attendance, IMEX also offered a wide array of tools and platforms for buyers to run their events. From face detection technology to audience engagement, and badge printing vendors to event hosting platforms - they were all in attendance.

How to get the best out of IMEX?

Now with over 12,000 registered attendees, hundreds of hosted buyers, and tons of exhibitors, it can be a really overwhelming three days if meetings and activities are not planned out well in advance. We did our homework, and knew exactly what to expect. Even then, we weren’t able to cover as much as we would have liked. 

Digital event platform Zuddl at IMEX America

Here are some tips to help you make the most of IMEX (or any large conference for that matter):

Book meetings way in advance

And by that I mean as early as four weeks before the conference begins. IMEX had a portal for buyers to contact vendors, and for vendors to run campaigns, which isn’t the best out there, but it was still something. Since IMEX is a buyer-first conference, it made sense for buyers to reach out to vendors. And each hosted buyer group had definite meeting targets to meet, so you could be sure that meetings would not be ghosted.  

Book your booth in advance

Most booth sponsors lock in their booths as soon as the event is announced. This helps them secure the best possible location for their budget. And at events, it is all about location location location! 

Follow up quickly

Make it a priority to follow up with booth visitors and leads as soon as possible after the event. The likelihood of them remembering the conversation drops significantly as time passes by. 

Create memorable giveaways

You will be long remembered for brilliant swag than a run-of-the-mill pen. Don’t get me wrong - pens are great, but how many conference swag pens can someone have? We took these brilliant water bottles/sippers, stickers, buttons and tote bags that flew off our shelves faster than we could restock. Now someone’s child somewhere knows of Zuddl (or Zoodle :P)

Zuddl X IMEX America 2022
Zuddl X IMEX America 2022 1

Zuddl X  IMEX America 2022 1

Wear comfortable shoes

I cannot stress this enough. I saw people changing into sneakers by the second half of the first day. These convention centers are huge, and you will need to walk from one part to the other. Comfortable feet make for comfortable days.

So there you have it folks. Hope this helps you drive more value from your events. 

See you at IMEX (or some other event!) soon!

Recommended read: Here's a sneak peek of event trends in 2023 as per our latest report.

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.


How communities are helping businesses to scale up

Mins Read
Kishore C S

Find out how people and business organizations leverage communities, and how communities can help engage customers in order to drive long-term growth.

At the risk of sounding cliche, we’d say humans are resilient. Consider the pandemic. Things were extremely difficult for everyone, and that too on all fronts. Lives, jobs, mental health… so much was at risk.

And yet during these trying times people found many ways to bounce back. Perhaps one of the best ways to combat the ills of the pandemic was building and growing communities. The situation during the pandemic made community more necessary than it's ever been. 

People who were out of jobs and needed a place that allowed them to go to help them find jobs found communities the perfect shelter. Communities helped them find empathy for what they were going through and helped them learn, for example, how to secure a job in the harsh climate. It may sound ironic, but the pandemic might have been the perfect storm.

Kishore C S, Content Lead at Zuddl, and Jared Robin, co-founder RevGenius, sat down for a fireside chat to discuss how communities have evolved, how people and business organizations leverage communities, and how communities can help engage customers in order to drive long-term growth.

Psst... if you'd rather listen to a podcast about this topic, click here.

The beginning of communities

In a wider sense of the word, communities evolved as something that’d support you, something outside of work. You had communities in schools, you had the church, you had sororities… And then there are meetup groups, there are events, and there are groups that border on being a community. 

They were also shaped to be a business model, in the way events and communities brought people together. It’s just that the bridge for leveraging community for your job and your professional life has doubled down the past few years. 

Thankfully, the digital revolution has made communities more far-reaching and more accessible than ever. That was clearly visible during and after the  pandemic. 

The first advantage of communities

On social media platforms people seem to do more selling than supporting.There’s nothing wrong with selling. Everyone lives by selling something, as the 19th century author Robert Louis Stevenson observed. But when selling is the predominant activity, other factors and questions about trust come into picture.

Community as a whole has been around probably since the beginning of time, the beginning of our lives. But the way they have entered business activities is very recent. And there’s a lot of reasons why communities are fast becoming important for organizations of all sorts. But the first advantage communities hold is that of trust.

People trust others more in communities than on social platforms. It’s like people are more eager to give when engaging communities. And the goal of being active in communities isn’t to drive leads further down the sales funnel. It’s more about helping them with their current needs. 

For instance, RevGenius may have a hundred people who have signed up to get into SAS sales. There will be cohorts, where we could take 50 people for a month and get them into software sales. And it’s all based on the spirit of helping - like these people won’t be paying anything. 

So communities have come to be identified with the goal of helping people at zero cost, or at a very low cost sometimes.

The widening reach and scope of community events

If you have any experience with communities, you’d have clearly observed two things. One, the reach of communities is growing rapidly, thanks to the digital space. And two, communities are growing in scope; business organizations are also leveraging them internally. 

With the pandemic behind us, we can look forward to in-person events that would strengthen the communities. All through, the focus is still to help community members. So if there were hybrid or digital events, the idea is to give more people around the world access to the community.

Communities within remote businesses 

Let’s see how lots of companies are approaching building communities through events. Initially, the companies were trying to improve their understanding of the virtual world, especially to see whether things were easy to adopt for everybody. 

1. Better quality: Companies have already seen enough evidence that adoption is not an issue. So now businesses are looking for better production quality at their events. They don’t want events to look like just another (boring) meeting. They want a different level of involvement and engagement as well.

2. More focus: At their own end, companies are also taking care that they keep things interesting, focused, and relevant. They are making sure the topics interest the audience. Outcomes are now at the center of these events. And ‘interactive’ is the operative word here.

3. Micro events: Companies are looking to not only get more focus but are also trying to drive productivity at the departmental level. Micro events involving communities leads to more intent, more engagement. Even big conferences are trying to be more subtle, more personal, and more engaged. 

How being interactive helps communities

Benefits of having interactive community

You don’t always need to have a huge headcount; a smaller but more engaged group can be more effective too. Imagine you’re doing a hybrid workshop over Zuddl. The participants are women who are in institutional or B2B sales. And because Zuddl is built for making hybrid events interactive, everyone is super engaged and active - basically going great.

Then a saleswoman (let’s call her Irene) asks a question. Her job is to sell to hospitals. Because it’s the healthcare industry, with the insurance industry overlapping, there are lots of restrictions and policy guidelines on what she can do and what she can’t. And because it’s a unique, industry-specific situation Irene is describing, the resource-person has only so many things to say. 

In absence of interactivity, Irene’s questions would go unanswered, or at least under-answered. That’d have left her unsatisfied - not a good thing for events.

But the platform’s ability to get everyone engaged and interact leads to a better outcome. The other participants know what’s being discussed. So everyone begins to dig deeper. They begin sharing their experiences from different industries, thereby trying to build a wider paradigm. 

Soon, the underlying commonalities between different sales situations begin to emerge. Irene is able to connect the dots by uncovering the deeper connections between the different things the other participants are sharing. The overall quality of the discussion improves, with the result that Irene has found a very good answer to her question.

Community as the new influencer

Community are the new influencer

Better understanding begins with better questions. And when you ask questions to people who’re close, they’ll first look at the use case and offer better answers. For instance, field marketers, who’ve been close to your customers for years, are able to niche down to the nitty-gritty in their answers. The people that look at everything best understand their community or their audience or their prospects or their customers the best.  

It kinds of adds up in the way we make decisions in our daily lives. We always check with our inner circle first. A community kind of works as our extended inner circle, where the trust is the same, like as you trust your brother or your best friend. 

Extend it a little. Suppose you’re traveling to some place and you’re looking to learn where you can find the best wi-fi. You’d likely head to Slack or some place where you’d see groups knowing and discussing this. And you can be sure you’ll have the right information. That’s like leveraging people in influencing type of capacities through the community.

The future of communities

Communities are the future

Communities  are the future

The way people are engaging in communities, the way events are shaping up and getting interactive - all this is shaping communities in a very unique way. In fact, we believe that the trends point to something interesting: communities are going to be more massive, and yet more micro. 

That means the sizes of communities will continue to expand. But would that hurt the purpose of communities, namely that of helping community members? Thanks to the digital capabilities of platforms, the focus is not getting blurred. People can still reach out on a one-to-one basis and seek and offer help to very specific issues.

You’ll also see communities becoming more empowering. People will have a bigger say in the direction in which their communities are headed. That augurs well not just for businesses but also for not-for-profits and social movements. For example, communities can solve lots of social challenges. Or there could be communities that could solve the problems of individuals.

Speaking of communities, have you checked out Hybrid State of Mind? It's the place to be if you're looking for expert advice, dope insights and a whole lot of other news and views from the event industry.

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.


Set up your marketing function for success with Fuel & Engine

Mins Read
Kishore C S

Earlier this year, marketing leaders Emily Kramer and Ketan Pandit discussed fuel and engine, and how to pair them right to get the perfect marketing function. This article has the important highlights from their chat.

Today, we're throwing it back to when Emily Kramer (Cofounder MKT-1) and Ketan Pandit (Head of Marketing, Zuddl) sat down for a fireside chat to discuss the fuel and engine concept and how to pair them right to get the perfect marketing function. 

We've handpicked the highlights of their session in this article; you're welcome!

The growing complexity of marketing

Marketing, especially tech marketing, has grown complex over the years. A number of market-focused tactics have changed. Technology platforms have grown to be a great better, in that they can tell you, with a great deal of accuracy, which ad platforms work better for you. Even a number of marketing roles and titles have widened or altered beyond recognition.

And yet, lots of things about marketing have remained consistent. The foundation of marketing has not, and cannot, change. While marketing is increasingly finding a seat at the revenue table, its primary purpose and mission hasn’t changed. 

With that context, it becomes both interesting and challenging for marketers to build stronger teams that, in turn, can shape the marketing function.

Fuel and Engine in marketing

If you take away all the jargon from marketing and strip it down to its most essential form, you will find the fuel and engine concept in marketing expresses everything that marketing is and needs.

The fuel is the ‘what’ part of marketing. All the content you have developed, all the messages you have crafted, all the creatives your teams churn out… everything that goes out to your audience is the fuel.

The engine is the ‘how’ part of the marketing. All the channels that you use, all the distribution vehicles you deploy to get the message across, all the platforms you leverage, … all of these are a part of your marketing engine.

In brief, fuel is the all the assets you create while engine is your distribution arm.

The most common marketing problems to overcome

Setup your marketing problems with Zuddl's unified event platform

No marketing teams are perfect, no matter how large and resource-rich the organization or how experienced the team members. The three most common patterns or problems that marketing teams face are:

1. All fuel and no engine

This is where you have made a whole bunch of content, you have perfected the words after having spent a lot of time. But unfortunately, that content isn’t getting to anyone because you’re not focused on distribution.

The key problem: You have the ‘what’ but are missing on the ‘how’.

2. All engine and no fuel

The website is ready for conversion flows and everything is optimized but the messaging is almost entirely absent. No matter what stage your website visitor is at, you hit them with the same message. You ignore other things and only put the request-demo message in the loop.

The key problem: You have the ‘how’ ready but the ‘what’ isn’t in place.

3. Wrong engine, wrong fuel

You have a great engine, but unfortunately it’s meant for a different business model, not yours. The messaging is neat and all ready, you’re sending it through the wrong engine.

The key problem: There’s a clear mismatch between your fuel and your engine.

What marketing needs to focus on

Enhance your marketing with Zuddl

Sales is focused on crushing revenue goals month after month, quarter after quarter. But what does marketing do?

Sure, marketing needs to be supporting the sales function in achieving the short-term revenue goals. But in addition to that, marketing should be able to build for long-term growth. And that’s done in a variety of ways. 

It could be through the following five actions:

  1. Building the brand: Your customers know and trust you, and recall your brand so well that they will continue buying even if you’ve dropped your paid promotion budget.
  2. Creating customer evangelist: It could be through UGC (User Generated Content) or finding and highlighting customers who are keen to share their positive experience with your brand.
  3. Going beyond numbers: Your marketing teams should have at least a few goals that are not number-based. Instead, make sure they’re building the fuel for the future.
  4. Always be experimenting: If you aren’t constantly running experiments on your homepage all the time, you’re wasting the traffic. Your marketing teams need the experiments and their learnings to keep improving their strategy. 
  5. Studying all kinds of results: Some of your experiments won’t have great results, but you can learn from them all the same. Learn even from the traffic that doesn’t convert.

The definitive solution: Building your marketing team

Zuddl provide definitive marketing solutions

It is evident that what worked for some other company won’t work for yours. That’s because all organizations are different. So one thing to do is to build a framework that will work for you.

More importantly, build the right team and you can prevent or overcome all sorts of marketing challenges. So how do you build a marketing team?

The conventional approach - the T-shaped person

Traditionally, people would suggest you hire a T-shaped person.

A T-shaped person is someone who is great in one area and has general knowledge across all the rest of the areas. Startups often do this - they get someone that’s really deep in one area, but doesn’t have much breadth. 

A better approach - hire the π-shaped person 

Times are changing, and you want your hiring strategy to change accordingly. 

A π shaped person is someone who is an expert in one area, and pretty competent in another area. And he has a good general knowledge across all the rest of the areas. Think of a product marketer who also can write well. Basically, you should be looking for a person with skill overlaps.

What about hiring contractors and freelancers?

Sometimes it’s easier to hire for your own teams, and at other times it makes more sense to have a contractor or an agency.

But how do you make a choice between hiring a full-timer and hiring an agency?

Sure, you can outsource a number of people or agencies for lots of tasks. But even after you’ve signed up with the best agency, how do you make sure they deliver the right quality?

An important thing to remember is that contractors and freelancers, no matter how good, will only be as good as you can manage them and guide them. They aren’t going to be great if they’re not given guidance and context for the company. 

So this is the crux: Activities that require deep expertise are best left to contractors if you’re not going to need that on a regular basis. Contractors have been working on the same thing over and over again, for a long, long time. Also, for work that’s done in spikes, i.e. at irregular intervals should be outsourced.

And with the remote working model widely accepted, it’s easier for people to work from where they want. That brings in a lot of different kinds of people you probably wouldn’t have been able to hire earlier.

As for your own teams, be really clear on goals upfront. When you’re building a startup, you want people to know what they’re working toward. 

Psst... More of a listener than a reader? Listen to Emily and Ketan's conversation here.

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.

Virtual Events

4 marketing lessons from our chat with Dave Dabbah

Mins Read
Kishore C S

Here are 4 marketing lessons you'll love from our recent webinar with Dave Dabbah, CMO of Robocorp

If you’ve been following our webinars, you’ll know that we recently featured Dave Dabbah, CMO, Robocorp on a fireside chat about marketing, events and beyond. In case you missed it, you can always watch it on demand here or listen to this podcast that captures the essence of the conversation.

Tell you what, let us spoil you silly by telling you the best parts of our conversation with Dave Dabbah in this blog. It can’t get easier, can it?

Here are four lessons you can take away from our webinar with Dave Dabbah:

Let your passion and curiosity fuel you

Follow your passion

According to Dave, it's important for marketers to let curiosity and passion drive their work. He gives his own experience as a kid to illustrate this point.

“Back in the day, my friends would get copies of Sports Illustrated while I was getting copies of Ad Age and Media Week as a child. It was fascinating, you know, cuz like you'd be reading about products and then, two months later you'd actually see the television spot, you’d feel like you had some, some inside sort of knowledge about what was happening with brand development even at a young age.”

Don’t be afraid to explore different avenues

Explore and experiment

Dave also highlights the usefulness of having worked in different roles before taking up a marketing role, highlighting how knowledge and experience in other functions can add a lot of value to storytelling.

“Having had a bit of a sales background and a business development background, sort of coming into the Silicon Valley, I felt like that really benefited me, um, a lot. And, and one of the things I tell young marketers today who are just graduating from college, is this; don't be afraid to go into sales, for, for a couple years, you know, experience what the sales people are experiencing. And that will make you a, a far better, especially B2B marketer.”

Don’t go for a one-size-fits-all approach

One size doesn't fit all!

Some of you may already know this, but what Dave says about distinguishing the marketing needs of a big corporation from a B2B startup is worth reading multiple times.

“B2B marketing is significantly harder than marketing a consumer brand. Those are, you know, sort of two different things, entirely. A lot of what we've seen with some of the really successful big brands in the Silicon Valley and the enterprise software space over the years is [that] they end up using a lot of consumer marketing tactics to put their brands into the marketplace. 

And, that's great, when you are, you know, IBM and you have, a hundred million, television budget for a 12 month period, but when you are a startup in the B2B space, how do you really get your brand message out in an effective way? I think, you know, over, over the years, that's something I've gotten, you know, pretty good at, um, trying to figure out.”

Repurposing content is the way forward

Repurpose, repurpose, repurpose!

As he talks about getting back to doing events, Dave makes a great case for repurposing content as a long-term marketing strategy.

“When we got back to events during the pandemic, we were not just spending money on the event, you know, before the event or during the event, but also actually getting content out of the event that could be repurposed and reused, down the road.”

Want more of these marketing gems? Go watch the webinar on-demand now. 

Zuddl is a unified platform for events and webinars that helps event marketers plan and execute events that drive growth. The platform has clients across the globe, such as the United Nations, Kellogg’s, Microsoft, HSBC, VMware, Google, StackCommerce and Cipla amongst others. In January 2022, Zuddl announced that it closed $13.35 mn in Series A funding.

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