Case Study: Expanding Event Audiences into New Market Segments

Fri, Feb 26, 2016

To learn from our strategic marketing campaigns, CSG Creative team members conduct a thorough post-show analysis after each of our events. We then often write up case studies on one or two challenges we faced during the campaign. This helps us understand how we can continue to improve and highlight our successes. This past Fall, the American Gear Manufacturers Association (AGMA) produced Gear Expo 2015, a show that continues to grow, but not without some critical thinking on all sides—operations, sales, marketing, customer service, and education, to name a few. Location, timing, market conditions, marketing campaign efforts, etc., must all work at peak efficiency to keep bringing in the crowds and exhibitors. Below is a snap shot from a case study from the marketing prospective.DSC_0505sm

Challenge:

Gear Expo numbers have been exceeding goals year after year—increasing attendance and selling out the exhibit hall each cycle. However, CSG Creative and our client the American Gear Manufacturers Association knew the market was reaching saturation and wanted to continue to improve and expand the show to more than the core market.

Solution:

A component of the overall strategy for Gear Expo 2015 included expanding attendance beyond the core market, particularly in the end user segments.

CSG Creative suggested working with related organizations and industry publications to create a more comprehensive strategic media plan. A first step in this long-term strategy was for AGMA to contract with an industry insider using CSG’s campaign messaging and creative to expand the brand and visibility. The pieces—in this case print and digital advertisements as well as email blasts—were targeted to each end-user industry with relevant photographs and links to targeted web landing pages.

Conference_BrochureIn addition, CSG suggested offering programing relevant to the end user segments. AGMA team members expanded the education program, offering more courses that appealed to various job titles of individuals working in the end-user sectors.

CSG also incorporated geofencing and geotargeting to the marketing mix—posting banner ads on computers and mobile devices that were connected through the Wi-Fi systems of the official hotel and Convention Center of a competitive event held a few months prior to Gear Expo.

Results:

The overall attendance at Gear Expo 2015 increased nearly 22% over the previous show. Several of the end user segments such as automotive, industrial, aerospace, and defense had significant increases in attendees. The media program included print ads, newsletter banners, web banners, and email blasts with eight trade partners—approximately twice as many partners as in previous years. A significant number of impressions were made with the additional ad insertions and email messages through the trade agreements—both with the traditional and new publications. Approximately a million impressions were added to the marketing mix—creating an expanded campaign to audiences previously not targeted with traditional marketing tactics. Several of the landing pages that were directly linked from the media trade partner ads and messages were among the most visited pages of the website.

There were significantly more engineers at the 2015 show, a group that was targeted via publications, direct mail, and email—especially in the local region around the show site of Detroit.

The education component consisting of the new courses resulted in a 20% increase in participation.

The audience attending the competitive event where the geofencing and geotargeting were implemented included prospects in the vertical markets we were targeting. Click through rates were right around the national average. A redirect link was used to track clicks on our back end. A high rate of click throughs were recorded compared to many other campaign elements. Audience types from this group were significantly higher in Gear Expo attendance in 2015 than in years past.

Providing programming and value and then promoting the event through a number of new channels to the expanded markets helped increase Gear Expo attendance and began building awareness and a loyal audience following for future shows.

 

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