If you haven’t really given attendee segmentation much thought, this article might change your mind. Read this post and discover why you need to personalize the interaction with your guests and segment them into specific categories.
One of the things that make your event exceptional and transformational is the personalized interaction with your attendees.
And this customization depends on your attendee type or category.
What does this mean?
Let’s imagine you’re trying to get a trade show or large conference off the ground that focuses on smart cities.
Obviously, not all of your attendees will share the same status, attendance interests, or degree of investment in the industry.
Some guests might be university researchers or students; others might belong to the startup world.
Apart from that, you might invite investors and world government representatives, such as mayors or city hall employees.
Plus, let’s add some folks from NGOs and creative labs.
Will you be interested in gathering the same type of information from all of your attendees?
Or will you want to run the same communication campaigns for all of these different guests?
This might reduce your efficiency level, and it will definitely look very unprofessional.
Apart from powering up your interaction protocol, people also expect a personalized approach, tailor-made to their presences and profile.
Thus, attendee segmentation is needed.
In other words, you’ll want to categorize people into multiple types, depending on your logistic needs.
These categories might represent attendees’ professional profile(s), their institutional representation, or even their attendance interest(s).
For example, if you’re running a trade show, you’ll classify people according to their agendas: exhibitors (those who’ll be presenting their businesses and offers), buyers (those who’ll buy from them), visitors (curious attendees), knowledge-seekers (people who also want to attend the expert panels), etc.
Subsequently, you’ll manage to personalize the interaction with your guests so you can meet their needs.
Not sure how?
Here’s a list of things that will become 10 times easier after putting your attendees into different categories:
Sending targeted marketing campaigns
You can’t sell your event to everyone using the same language.
To make your campaign successful, you’ll want to adjust your approach to your guests’ interests, wants, and needs.
So before you’ll be running the event, think about the attendee types you want to establish. Then, using an event management platform, set up the categories and configure their profiles accordingly.
Next, design a series of marketing emails that are adjusted to your attendees’ profile.
Referring to the example presented above, you can invite the smart city researchers by indicating the expertise of your speakers and the access they’ll have to a strong network.
On the other hand, you can promote your event to different startup representatives by specifying the presence of international investors who’ll be interested in their businesses.
This way, you’ll personalize your marketing campaigns and make sure that your event is appealing to everyone.
Personalizing your communications
Apart from your marketing campaigns, you’ll want to send your attendees a series of messages that communicate the logistic aspects.
Let’s say, for example, that one day before the event starts, you’re planning a cocktail dinner for the investors only.
You can’t send an email with the evening details to everyone attending your event. On the contrary, you want to be 100% specific and share this information just to those people who’ll be attending the cocktail dinner.
Attendee segmentation can help you with that.
Designing customized registration forms
When inviting people to complete the registration form, you may want to acquire particular information from each attendee type.
Let’s say that you’ll be running a B2B networking dynamic just for startup representatives and investors.
In this case, you have to prepare a separate registration form for them, ask them if they’d be interested in taking part in this activity, and refer them to a different page where they can specify what they’re offering (business) and what they’re looking for (investors).
Defining different attendance fee categories
Events may have several pricing plans. Configure multiple attendee types and decide how much, for example, exhibitors must pay compared to regular assistants.
Take full control over the payment process by setting distinct fees for different attendee categories.
Customizing the agenda activities
It may be the case that not all of your activities are suitable for everyone attending your event.
Some people may be interested in specific workshops, while others may be attending just to network.
Segmenting your audience gives you a better understanding of everyone’s needs and will help you personalize the event agenda.
Designing multiple registration badges
If you’re using an event management platform, you can use tags and configure different badges for your guests.
Obviously, depending on their category, you’ll be able to customize the badges and add different information or even different visual elements that will distinguish your guests based on their profile.
Enabling or disabling different access areas
Let’s say you’re planning an exhibition. You have the exhibitors’ area, a space for B2B networking, and a knowledge area with several rooms and simultaneous conferences.
You can assign attendees access right to different areas based on their segmentation.
For example, you may have attendees who are exhibition visitors only. Others may have access to both the exhibitions and knowledge sessions, while the third category of attendees may have access to all areas, including the networking space.
To wrap up
By putting your attendees into specific groups or categories, you’ll diversify your options and cut the efforts of managing and personalizing your interaction with the attendees.
Audience segmentation is all about building a strategic vision for your event. If you can correctly determine the guest categories, then you can also put a well-defined plan into action that will boost the efficiency of your planning efforts.