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How to Get the Most ROI Out of Real Estate Industry Events in 2023

By Elizabeth Latino

Since the pandemic, we’ve hit many potholes on the road to the return of in-person events. However, the question of ‘do people want to attend events in person’ is no longer relevant and the appetite for face-to-face networking and interaction is higher than ever.  

 That being said, 2023 has come with its own set of challenges, the largest being economic uncertainty. While there is a plethora of events focused on the real estate industry in the U.S., brands are tightening their marketing budgets and paying extremely close attention to their return on investment for each and every dollar spent.  

 It would be shortsighted for brands to completely eliminate event attendance, sponsorship and participation as a piece of their marketing strategy because, at the end of the day, there are indisputable benefits. If you’re at the right event, it can be an opportunity to engage with an audience in a meaningful way, leading to brand awareness and lead generation.  

 So, how do you make the most out of industry events in 2023 and beyond? Having a clear strategy in place is a must.  

 Here are some tips to help you identify, plan and execute a successful event marketing campaign:   

  1. Define your objectives and set KPIs: Determine what exactly you want to get out of your event spend for the year and how you will define success. Is it generating leads? Establishing yourself as a thought leader in a particular category? Whatever it might be, use this as your North Star to guide you throughout the rest of the process.  
  2. Identify your target audience: Define your target audience based on the objectives that you’ve set. If it’s lead generation you’re after, your audience will obviously be potential customers or clients. However, if it’s growing your investment pool, perhaps you want to be in front of VC’s. If you’re looking to establish yourself as a commercial real estate thought leader, it could be your peers. And so on.  
  3. Choose the right type of events: This might be the most important tip on the list. Make sure you’re selecting the must-attend events for your target audience. For example, if you’re a Property Technology (PropTech) company looking for lead generation, attending a tech-focused event with your peers might not yield the best results. Instead, you’d most likely benefit from an industry-wide event that attracts developers, owners, property managers and beyond (depending on your product).  
  4. Determine your brand’s level of involvement: Some events you might simply want to attend, while others you may want to get more involved be aligning with the event through sponsorship opportunities or speaking on a panel or moderating. When exploring sponsorship opportunities, press the event organizers on their goals for programming and who they expect to be in attendance.   
  5. Plan your content: If you’re going to be sponsoring or speaking at an event, develop engaging and informative content that aligns with your brand messaging and, most importantly, resonates with your target audience. If you’re a keynote speaker or participating on a panel, talk less about your company and more about relevant industry-wide topics that the audience will care about. If you’re running a booth, arm your marketing team with the talking points they need to address the pain points of potential customers or clients.  
  6. Promote your event: If you’ve chosen to sponsor, speak at or attend an event, don’t leave the promotion completely up to the organizer. Have your public relations and marketing teams create a ‘mini strategy’ to push out information on the event across all  your owned channels, including social media.  
  7. Measure your results: Track your event metrics – such as engagement and leads generated – and how they stacked up against your KPIs. This is crucial in not only measuring the success of your event strategy but informing your event approach in the future.  

 While the event landscape has changed, it’s still an incredibly powerful marketing tool. As long as brands are thoughtful with their strategy and have a clear definition of success, events will continue to be an integral component of any 360-degree marketing strategy for years to come.  

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