How do you use hubspot to prove ROI of tradeshows

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We are looking to start analyzing the return on tradeshows.  I am looking for suggestins on how to use the Hubspot CRM and the reporting add on to give us insight into how many sales are coming out of these shows.

 

How do you all track your tradeshow ROI ?

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"

What I would love to do is import a list of our tradeshow contacts into the crm, and after a year (we have a very long sales cycle) get a report on the total deal amounts that resulted from those trade shows.  But I am not sure that is possible, so I am curious how others do it.  

 "

 

This is totally possible! You sound just like us. I work for an enterprise-level software company and we a) attend tradeshows/conferences b) scan boot attendees and upload them into the CRM and c) have to track revenue to tradeshows attended.

 

When we upload the scans into HubSpot, we have custom fields called Lead Source and Lead Source Description - we select Conference for our Lead Source and put the name of the tradeshow/conference in the Lead Source Description. 

This way if that individual is associated with a deal, we will know that at least a bit of the revenue may be attributed to a connection at that conference or tradeshow.

 

To track the movement of these people, the report (and by report I actually mean Filter View in HubSpot Contacts) that we actually pull looks at Lifecycle Stage and Lead Source Description. If someone with the LSD of Con17 has a Lifecycle Stage of Lead I know they didn't go anywhere. If they have a Lifecycle Stage of SQL or Opportunity I know that they are still being worked. If they have a Lifecycle Stage of Customer (and I know they were not an existing customer at the time of Con17) then I can attribute revenue directly to Con17. 

 

This way isn't at all foolproof as we meet plenty of new contacts who are already existing customers as well as people who end up being associated with a deal-in-progress, which is why we do this in tandem with the below...which is much more reliable for tracking deals that came directly from Con17 (or wherever) - but the below won't catch the deals where Con17 was NOT the first touch point, and the above will.

 

A second way that we track this is by having a deal field called Referred By - this is a single-line text field that we can fill in the deal source (be it a partner or in some cases a tradeshow/conference) of the FIRST time that deal comes on our radar. - I have found that this is the easiest way to keep track of where our year+/multi-contact/multi-touchpoint sales cycles come from.

 

Then you can run a report at the end of each period of all closed won deals within that same period and display it by Referred By (or whatever you call that field yourselves) field. 

 

Ah, the possibilities (and limitations) of reporting! 

 

Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions. The day I stop looking to improve process is the day...well, let's just say it will be a bad day.

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Community Manager

Hi @JimHarris, great question. In order to provide some advice, it might be useful if you were able to give some more specifics about how you currently record your tradeshow sales. We have a deals tool that is used by our customers to record sales, which your team could definitely use as well, but as far as a ROI calculation that's not currently available within our platform. @kcooper do you have any suggestions on this type of reporting? 

Regular Contributor

@nicolebrenner

 

At the moment we haven't been documenting our trade show sales at all which is why we are eager to start this initiative.  

 

We use the Hubspot CRM at the moment which includes using deals to track our sales.  What isn't clear to me is how I can use our current tools to track tradeshow sales.  If we could just track the sales I can manually do the ROI calculation, that isn't a big issue.

 

What I would love to do is import a list of our tradeshow contacts into the crm, and after a year (we have a very long sales cycle) get a report on the total deal amounts that resulted from those trade shows.  But I am not sure that is possible, so I am curious how others do it.  

 

 

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Top Contributor

"

What I would love to do is import a list of our tradeshow contacts into the crm, and after a year (we have a very long sales cycle) get a report on the total deal amounts that resulted from those trade shows.  But I am not sure that is possible, so I am curious how others do it.  

 "

 

This is totally possible! You sound just like us. I work for an enterprise-level software company and we a) attend tradeshows/conferences b) scan boot attendees and upload them into the CRM and c) have to track revenue to tradeshows attended.

 

When we upload the scans into HubSpot, we have custom fields called Lead Source and Lead Source Description - we select Conference for our Lead Source and put the name of the tradeshow/conference in the Lead Source Description. 

This way if that individual is associated with a deal, we will know that at least a bit of the revenue may be attributed to a connection at that conference or tradeshow.

 

To track the movement of these people, the report (and by report I actually mean Filter View in HubSpot Contacts) that we actually pull looks at Lifecycle Stage and Lead Source Description. If someone with the LSD of Con17 has a Lifecycle Stage of Lead I know they didn't go anywhere. If they have a Lifecycle Stage of SQL or Opportunity I know that they are still being worked. If they have a Lifecycle Stage of Customer (and I know they were not an existing customer at the time of Con17) then I can attribute revenue directly to Con17. 

 

This way isn't at all foolproof as we meet plenty of new contacts who are already existing customers as well as people who end up being associated with a deal-in-progress, which is why we do this in tandem with the below...which is much more reliable for tracking deals that came directly from Con17 (or wherever) - but the below won't catch the deals where Con17 was NOT the first touch point, and the above will.

 

A second way that we track this is by having a deal field called Referred By - this is a single-line text field that we can fill in the deal source (be it a partner or in some cases a tradeshow/conference) of the FIRST time that deal comes on our radar. - I have found that this is the easiest way to keep track of where our year+/multi-contact/multi-touchpoint sales cycles come from.

 

Then you can run a report at the end of each period of all closed won deals within that same period and display it by Referred By (or whatever you call that field yourselves) field. 

 

Ah, the possibilities (and limitations) of reporting! 

 

Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions. The day I stop looking to improve process is the day...well, let's just say it will be a bad day.

Regular Contributor

@kcooper thanks for the reply.  There is a lot to digest there so I have a few follow up questions for you.

 

 

Using lifecycle stage and lead source description you are finding a list of customers who have attended that trade show in particular.  Do you then go in and manually add up the value of those deals with each contact?  Or are you somehow get that dollar amount through a report?  

 

I like your second report you reference.  It sounds like it could be the perfect solution for us.  You could run a report using a view that filtered by the Source deal property.  I am not sure our sales staff is willing to check a box in the deal creation step indictating they met them at a particular conference.  We are in our first year of having a CRM and there is a lot of push back on the fact that it just feels like lots of data entry.  

 

 

 

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Jim, sorry for the response delay. This week has been nutzo! 

 

So the thing about Lead Source Description is that since it is a write-in field (for us), we are only wanting to display where we FIRST met the contact...we could have also met them at 5 more tradeshows and the last touch was the one that initiated a deal. So it depends on how you want to attribute the revenue...to the first touch, or the last touch before a deal was created. --side note: how we track our various touchpoints @ tradeshows is that each time we attend a show, that scan list is uploaded into HubSpot...and when you import contacts a marketing list is automatically created - so by looking at what lists they belong to we can see ALL of the conferences we met them at, not just the first one.

 

And then, unfortunately, yes...if you are going from the contact level you would need to manually add up the value of the deals with each contact. At least, I haven't found a better way to do it. If you find one, please let me know!

 

I hear you on the push-back. The day that HubSpot comes out with a way to require fields is the day that I go out and buy the office a cake - a celebration for me and a consolation cake for the reps who now have to have to fill out fields. 

 

 

Occasional Contributor

Hi there! Love this discussion. I have a newbie question re. trade shows contacts: a few days ago I've tried to import our last trade show contacts and couldn't figure out the best way to do this. According to Hubspot documentation I'm suppose to import 3 files : contacts.csv, companies.csv and deals.csv

It did not make sense to me (I didn't see how all these data would be linked to each other) so I just imported a contact.csv file and then for each contact I manually created a company and a deal. So tedious! 

Please tell me there's a easier way...

Cheers.

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Regular Contributor

@Olivier

I imported a list of contacts that we got from our badge scanner.  Before I imported the contacts.csv I added a couple columns for hubspot owner and "X Tradeshow 2017" which was a single checkbox to indicate that we met them at this trade show.

 

I believe for the vast majority of contacts hubspot will automatically link a contact to a company based on the domain name in the email address.  So I would think you wouldn't have to create all those companies manually.

 

As far as the deals go as our sales people continue to work the leads they met at the tradeshow they will manually create deals for those contacts that mature into opportunities.  Not that tedious in my opinion as, for us at least, very few contacts will actually turn into an oppurtuniity.  

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Occasional Contributor

@JimHarris

Thx for sharing your workflow. In my industry (restaurants) many of our contacts do not have a company domain name but a generic (ie gmail) address. So when I import them in Hubspot almost no company gets created, and I end up doing it manually.

 

Re. deals, I'm new to this workflow: maybe I shouldn't do this, but I systematically create a deal for every contact -- unless of course a contact is not a potential customer.

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@Olivier

 

I think that all depends on how you setup your deal pipeline.  The way ours is our first deal stage is "Active."  And we define active as a lead has made a request for quote or some sort of communication hinting at a potential need for our services.  

 

In our pipeline it wouldn't make sense to make a deal for everyone we made at a tradeshow because not everyone is needing our services at that time.  But they might later so they are nice to have in the CRM to keep tabs on.  

New Contributor

Hi, are you syncing the Tradeshow and associated people to Salesforce?  We'd like to be able to see in Salesforce the Tradeshow as a Campaign and the people who we met as Campaign Members.  Thanks.

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