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Webinar Leads vs. Trade Show Leads: How do they compare?

Posted by Mike McKinnon on
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Webinar Leads vs. Trade Show Leads: How do they compare?

Webinar leads compared to tradeshow leads

Leads come from various sources, and marketers need to do a cost and time analysis on which tactics are providing them with the most qualified leads. Not only is increasing competition a concern, but the various sources for leads no longer exist in silos – this is the age of the interconnected customer. Prospects are looking in a variety of places to get more information about you and your competitors. Based on our research, webinars and trade shows are becoming more successful lead generation tactics. Let’s compare how these tactics match up.

The Content Marketing Institute estimates that 62% of all B2B marketers use webinars to prospect or nurture leads. Webinars, after all, offer the best stage for the marketer to provide value to the prospect, with the prospect’s permission. The marketer is provided with an opportunity to establish their organization as an expert in its niche, as well as be a primary resource for the latest and most authentic information related to that niche. Marketers can reach out to prospects all over the world, from the comfort of their office or their pajamas. And of the attendees for each webinar, about 20-40% turned into qualified leads.

On the other hand, 76% of marketers attend in-person events, such as trade shows. These events are ways for marketers to showcase their products or services in-person, which can also generate qualified leads.  Although live events are much more expensive than webinars or any other online methods, they offer that unique in-person contact, which delivers results without requiring much follow-up. The fact is, that 53% of potential or closed sales are the result of what attendees saw at an exhibition. However, that comes at the cost of travel, lodging, conference fees, and more to get that face-to-face contact. And that might be for multiple team members!

High costs mean that companies cannot just rely on such statistics alone and hope for the best. Not all tradeshow visitors may be potential leads. Many visitors simply attend an event that interest them, while some others seek knowledge and information with no intent to buy, while some might just be tourists passing time. The burden is on the marketers to identify visitors with a genuine buying interest and prioritize their time wisely. Sometimes, this means that marketers will spend thousands of dollars before figuring out that a conference doesn’t make sense for them. No one goes home happy when this happens.

In the spectrum of lead generation tactics, webinars are a more efficient, more cost effective way to generate high quality leads. Are we saying that trade shows aren’t effective or worth the time? Definitely not. But we are saying that webinars are a great way to provide valuable content on a regular basis at a fraction of the cost.

Compared to other marketing tactics, webinars offer higher quality leads and a shorter lead nurturing phase. This means more dollar signs and a happier marketer. Find out how and why the cost of a webinar lead is justified in your marketing budget in The Cost of Webinars whitepaper.

 

Reference:

1.     http://meetingsnet.com/site-files/meetingsnet.com/files/uploads/2013/02/MeetingsNet%20Webinars%26Tradeshows.pdf

2.     http://www.salesify.com/blog/bid/52625/Tradeshow-Leads-They-re-just-not-that-into-you

3.     http://www.marketingprofs.com/articles/2011/5938/

4.     http://contentmarketinginstitute.com/2013/10/2014-b2b-content-marketing-research/

5.     http://www.webattract.com/blog/?p=379

6.     http://www.salesify.com/blog/bid/52625/Tradeshow-Leads-They-re-just-not-that-into-you

7.     http://www.readytalk.com/sites/default/files/docs/support-training/ReadyTalk%20-%20Using%20Webinar%20to%20Land%20Tradeshow%20Leads.pdf

8.    http://www.readytalk.com/blog/demand-generation/after-the-webinar-how-do-you-compare-infographic


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