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How Efficient Data Collection At Live Marketing Events Can Enhance Sales

Attending events is an excellent opportunity for participants to expand their knowledge and improve their skills in their career. It is also one of the best places for networking, making new friends in the industry and getting to know prospects. Events can include trade-shows, conferences, seminars, and shared meals like breakfasts, lunches, and dinners.

The Importance of Collecting Data at Events

Events, in essence, are places where information is exchanged. Some of it is critical information.

How does an attendee collect all this free-floating data?

When online, marketers can collect data using automated processes. For instance, a name and an email address can be collected when a website visitor agrees to swap this personal information in return for a downloadable report.

However, what does a marketer have to do to collect data when it is being offered in person? For instance, a prospect is asking marketer to send him or her information and is giving them their email address.

Traditionally, marketers would right down all this information, but pen and paper is an ineffective way to record large amounts of information delivered at a rapid pace.

How to Collect Data at Events

The solution, of course, is to bring your own device to capture information. Technology will handle the task with grace and ease.

When you bring your own device (BYOD), Bring Your Own PC (BYOPC). Bring Your Own Phone (BYOP) or Bring Your Own Technology (BYOT) to a trade show, conference, seminar, or meal, you resolve the issue of how to collect data. If you work for yourself or work for a company that has a flexible policy about BOYD, then there is no problem with whipping out your Ultrabook or iPad at an event and collecting data.

Two Potential Problems with BOYD

However, there are two potential problems:

1.The prospect may have forgotten that they orally gave you permission to contact them.

2.Your company may insist that for security purposes (the risk of malware, viruses, or hackers) that you do not integrate your information into their computer systems.

Addressing Privacy Issues

The best way to handle the thorny problems between data collection and privacy issues is actually fairly simple. First, you should contact your new database as soon as possible. If you delay, they may not remember you and accuse you of spam. Second, you should reintroduce yourself in your email, reminding them of where and when you met. If you want to be extra cautious, you can even ask them if they would still like to receive the information you promised to send them.

Addressing IT Security

In the event that you work for a company where the idea of BOYD at work is a bad idea, then before going to a conference, you should ask permission to record data on your own device when you are there. Usually, when your marketing manager realizes that you are bringing important data back to the company, special permission might be obtained from the IT department to allow you to enter data from your device into the company’s computers. Alternatively, the IT department might loan you a company device to record data at the conference. Either way, you avoid the potential problems of integration.

Summary

Although it might not seem important if you do or don’t capture important information at an event, think about the opportunity cost by not collecting data efficiently at an event. Your business could lose out on the business of a highly profitable client if his or her email address had been properly recorded and the information they asked for sent in a timely way.