Drinking Our Own Champagne: How Marketo Uses its Event Marketing Software at Dreamforce

Event Marketing


Events are a vital component of demand generation and brand reinforcement platforms and represent a huge slice of total B2B marketing spend. One of Marketo’s most significant events to attend and sponsor is Dreamforce; every year we make an effort to get the most from this critical industry-leading conference.

In order to streamline the laborious event lead management process – which consists of everything from attracting attendees, to registration administration, to post-event follow up – we employ our own event marketing software. Through its use, we are able to automate and simplify the event process, which drives higher attendance and ultimately converts more Dreamforce leads to actual sales.

One way we do so is by sending to our database meaningful, personalized invitations, timely reminders and gentle nudges to potential no-shows, to attract more attendees.  As they say, it’s all about the numbers, so if you can engage more prospective attendees early on, thus attracting them to your booth, you’re certain to convert more attendees to customers.

In order to correctly target our database, we leverage our events functionality to segment based on various demographic and behavioral information. For an event like Dreamforce, we’ll split create various messages for Bay Area local prospects, Marketo customers that use Salesforce, previous attendees of a salesforce.com sponsored event, those that have indicated they will attend Dreamforce (via social media or through a contest we’ve run), and the remainder of our database. We then create different messages for these audiences and deploy our campaigns, all while suppressing campaign members from each other.

Another innovative way we use Marketo for events is by seamlessly integrating it with online webinar providers like WebEx.  Our webinar connection allows our system to communicate with a third-party platform without the hassle of logging in and out of two different systems. We simply create a new event, build a landing page with registration form using our easy-to-use WYSIWYG editor, tie in the webinar event with the campaign, and voila! – all registration data is synchronized between the two systems in real time. No need for list cleanup or import/export, member statuses are automatically updated post-webinar, allowing for a fast, targeted follow-up campaign.

It’s also important to maximize our Dreamforce investment by leveraging show-generated content (pictures, customer videos, quotes, info from sessions) and repurpose it as reusable marketing assets.  This boosts our marketing team’s efficiency, improves workflow and scalability across our multiple programs and ultimately drives more revenue.

In addition, Marketo uses its post-event follow up tools, which allows our marketing team to close the loop on a timely basis and boost conversion rates. We use trigger and filter rules to listen for a list upload, and then shoot out targeted emails based on the rules we set up in real time allowing for follow-up to go out the fastest, boosting our conversion rates.

We also set up logical wait steps that watch for activity or inactivity and automatically follow-up after a defined period of time based on rules we set up. For example, if a lead does not open email follow-up #1 in the first 10 days, Marketo sends email follow-up #2. Having Marketo automate these processes ensures timely follow-up that enables us to enhance our post-Dreamforce lead nurturing and increase conversion rates.

Want to know more and all the cool stuff Marketo will be doing during Dreamforce this year?  Visit us at Booth 817 or visit http://www.marketo.com/dreamforce11/.