How to Crush Your Conference Demos in 2019
Dianna Albanese, SourceMedia
Conferences and events offer plenty of networking and marketing opportunities to build meaningful connections with other vendors and attendees. When done correctly, a demo is a powerful branding opportunity that can advance your company within your professional community.
What to Know Before You Start
“Good demos don’t have to be perfect for the product. They have to be perfect for the audience.” - First Round
Most brands have made the adjustment to build audience-focused strategies for all aspects of their organizations, whether it be sales, marketing or events. The same can be said for demos.
A presenter can have the perfect sales pitch, beautifully crafted slides and a product that never glitches out — none of this matters if you aren’t addressing your audience’s needs and pain points in their line of work.
Prepare For Your Demo
Whether you’re on the conference schedule as a presenter or the event organizers are hosting a product demo contest, you need to ensure your demo moves sales forward. To do so, Inc.com and TechCrunch.com suggest following these rules:
- Customize your demo to your audience. If you’re at a conference, chances are, the people in your audience have something in common. Be sure to customize your presentation to that commonality and make it relevant. Research what companies are attending, who their clients are, what they find works and what frustrates them. Create content that will resonate with them.
- Tell the customer’s story. Personalize your demo for your audience. Don’t simply list product features. Offer problems your listeners may find themselves dealing with and how your product can rectify the situation.
- Rehearse. It’s not just about the demo. Prepare for questions that may come from the audience or panel during or after your presentation.
- Understand the competitive landscape. When you understand why similar products work and why they fail, you’ll gain the trust of your audience. You took your time to do the research. According to TechCrunch.com, “If you don’t know the competitive landscape, and the shoulders you’re standing on, folks are not going to be comfortable giving you their money, time or attention.”
Following Up Post-Demo
A conference can host hundreds of presentations, meetings and panels. It’s important to ensure your demo stands out in the crowd. InsightSquared.com lists a few demo follow-up methods to make sure this happens:
- Write a great follow-up email. If you have access to an email list from the conference, utilize it to reach out to those who attended the conference or your demo session specifically.
- Create and share relevant content. Whether on your company’s social media channels or blog, create content that serves as a follow up to your demo. Share imagery, video and infographics that explain what your product does and how it helps your clients.
- Utilize social and sales tools like LinkedIn and Rapportive. LinkedIn allows you to connect with others within a certain vicinity of your device. End your demo by offering to connect with others in the room and allow them to connect with each other, too. This serves as a great networking and follow-up tool. On top of this, using sales tools like Rapportive will immediately alert you to any shared connects and make the process of connecting and selling easier in the future.
Three Demos That Hit the Mark
Want to see some great demo examples? Read on for three demos from SourceMedia’s conferences that embrace the rules listed above.
The RetireUp team presented RetireUpPro at Financial Planning’s In|Vest 2018, placing emphasis on the client engagement process for both the advisor and the client. They explain that the key challenge this product solves is simplifying the concept of a retirement income plan for the client, which can be confusing to a lot of individuals.
At Digital Insurance’s Dig|In 2018 Conference, the Moxie team presented their product called Concierge. They studied the market and understand the need for brands to excel in this new “guided economy” where customers expect answers before the realize they have a question. Concierge helps companies guide and engage with customers through their online journey without needing human assistance.
Jane.ai presented it’s artificial intelligence platform called Jane at National Mortgage News’ Digital Mortgage 2018 conference. Jane.ai addresses a pretty significant pain point for mortgage professionals, which deals with having to use so many platforms that all house different information. One can integrate the AI platform into chat tools like Skype and ask Jane for loan numbers, seller’s agents or even property specific restrictions.
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