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Top Marketing Events 2021

Get your free copy of the 2021 Marketing Events Planner. Plus get updated on changes to the events schedule.

In accordance with the latest UK Government Roadmap, Step 4 outlines the following from the 19th July 2021, after the final stage was pushed by four weeks:

  • It is hoped all legal limits on social contact can be removed.
  • We hope to reopen nightclubs and lift restrictions on large events and performances that apply in Step 3.
  • This will also guide decisions on whether all limits can be removed on weddings and other life events.

Marketing Events & Conferences 2021

Even throughout the trials and tribulations thrown at us by the year 2020, there have been a number of resilient marketing events that have refused to call it quits. Instead, they innovate and adapt to the unpredictable circumstances we find ourselves in and pave the way into a new and revolutionary events marketing era.

If you’ve been sick of staring at white space and blank boxes in your calendar for months on end, we feel you. That’s why we’ve rounded up a list of marketing events being hosted online and by the hopefuls around the world that have been brave enough to plan for in-person marketing events in the coming months.

And as if that wasn't enough, we've created a Marketing Events Planner and Calculator template to make your life even easier. See that big blue box over there? 👉 Fill it in and we've deliver a little gift straight to your inbox. We will also be updating this list monthly and will dash you an email when updated.

So, grab your dairy (or spread sheet) and pack it jammed full of the biggest and baddest marketing events below. 

P.S. If you're on the hunt for alternatives to events marketing for lead generation chat to one of our team about our sponsored marketing services including webinars, branded content and more. 

January 2021

When Who Where What
Jan 20-21 CommerceNext Online Retail
Jan 27-29 Japan IT Week Osaka 2021 Osaka, Japan Digital


Martech Sponsorship EDIT New Long

February 2021

When Who Where What
Feb 1-5 SUPERWEEK Hungary Budapest, Hungary Analytics
Feb 2-4 Affiliate Summit West Las Vegas, NV Affiliate
Feb 2-3 Savant eCommerce Stockholm Stockholm, Sweden Retail
Feb 9-10 Digital Food & Beverage EU London, UK Industry
Feb 10-11 MGS21 (Mobile Growth Association) Online Mobile
Feb-17 Influencer Marketing Conference Online Influencer
Feb-18 E-Commerce Berlin Expo Berlin, Germany Retail
Feb-20 Asia Pacific Conference on Business and Marketing(APCBM) Australia Industry
Feb 21-23 The Annual Medicare Marketing & Sales Summit Las Vegas Industry
Feb 22-23 Higher Education Marketing, Branding & Recruitment in Asia Conference Singapore Industry
Feb 22-24 B2B Marketing Exchange Scottsdale B2B
Feb 23-24 eTail Connect Spring Online Retail
Feb 23-25 eTail Virtual Summit & Expo Online Retail
Feb 23-25 Beer Marketing & Tourism Conference Richmond, VA Industry
Feb-24 B2B Online Online B2B
Feb-24 Shopper-Centric London Retail
Feb 24-25 Digital Marketing for Financial Services West Summit San Francisco, CA Industry
Feb 24-25 Digital Marketing for Financial Services West Summit Online Finance
Feb 24-26 Digiday: Publishing Summit Worldwide Online Industry
Feb 24-26 Digital Summit At Home: Content & Social
Online Social
Feb 24-26 Marketing Technology Fair Osaka Japan MarTech
Feb 24-26 Sales Marketing Messe Munich Germany Industry
Feb 24-26 The MarTech Summit: Virtual APAC Online Industry
Feb 25-26 Social Media Strategies Summit Online Social 
Feb-27 Asia Pacific Conference on Business and Marketing(APCBM) Australia Industry
Feb-27 Global Conference on Business Management and Economics Canada Industry
Feb 28-Mar 2 Social Media Marketing World San Diego, CA Social


March 2021

When Who Where What
Mar 2-3 DX3 Canada Toronto, Canada Retail
Mar 2-4 Ecommerce Expo  Online Ecommerce
Mar 3-4 B2B Marketing Expo Los Angeles, CA B2B
Mar 3-4 Future of Marketing Waidhofen an der Ybbs, Austria Industry
Mar-4 MGS India 21 (Mobile Growth Association) Online Mobile
Mar 4-5 Digital Analytics Hub: Virtual Online Digital Analytics
Mar-6 Asia Pacific Conference on Business and Marketing Brisbane, Australia Industry
Mar 5-7 PodFest 2021 Orlando, FL Podcast
Mar 9-11 eTail Germany Berlin, Germany Retail
Mar 9-12 Machinery, Materials, Marketing of Baking and Confectionary Show(Mobac Show) Osaka, Japan Baking and Confectionary
Mar 10-11 Money Management Institute Sales & Marketing Leadership Summit (MMI Sales & Marketing Leadership Summit) St Petersburg, FL  
Mar 10-12 Digiday Media Buying Summit Online Ecommerce
Mar 10-12 GDS Digital Marketing Summit Online Digital
Mar-11 The Digital Marketing Forum Hertfordshire, UK Digital
Mar 15-17 Marketing Impact Academy LIVE Orange County, CA Industry
Mar 16-17 Investor Relations, Marketing & Communications Forum Online Industry
Mar 17-18 IRX & eDX Birmingham, UK Retail
Mar 17-18 Search Marketing Expo Munich(SMX) Munich, Germany Search Marketing
Mar 18--20 Global Hospitality and Tourism Conference Shillong, India Hospitality
Mar 20-21 International Conference on Dynamics of Social Science, Marketing Management and Business and Economics Bangkok, Thailand Industry
Mar 23-24 Savant eCommerce Berlin Berlin, Germany Retail
Mar 23-25 Festival of Marketing: The Bottom Line London, UK Industry
Mar 24-25 #DMWF North America New York, NY Digital
Mar 24-26 Digiday Glossy Modern Commerce Forum Live Online Ecommerce
Mar-25 The MarTech Summit: Virtual Europe Online MarTech
Mar 25-26 BrightonSEO Online Search
Mar 25-26 Economic Competitiveness and Sustainability  Brno, Czech Republic Economic
Mar-26 Automotive Digital & Marketing Innovation Summit & Awards Ceremony Shanghai, China Digital
Mar 26-27 Digital Marketing & Sales Seminar Innsbruck, Austria Digital & Sales
Mar 27-28 Global Research Forum on Business, Economics, Marketing Management & Social Science Research Methods Pasig, Philippines Industry
Mar 29-31 Digital Summit At Home Online Digital
Mar 30-31 Marketing Pulse Online Industry
Mar 31-May 26 Township Marketing Summit Online Industry


Martech Sponsorship EDIT New Long

April 2021

When Who Where What
Apr-2 Video Marketing Seminar Innsbruck, Austria Video
Apr-6 Digital Sales & Marketing Day Online Digital
Apr 6-7 TASS International Conference on Business Ethics, Marketing, Banking and Finance, Economics & Social Sciences (BMBFS) Taiwan Industry
Apr 6-8 Content 360 Week Online Content
Apr 6-8 Web a Quebec 21 Canada, Quebec Digital
Apr 6-8 Customer Relationship & Marketing Meeting Cannes, France Industry
Apr 6-8 MOMENTOUS Online Industry
Apr 6-9 Annual IT Sales and Marketing Boot Camp Nashville, USA Sales
Apr 6-9 Saudi International Exhibition for Electronic Marketing and Electronic Commerce Al Qirawan, Saudi Arabia Ecommerce
Apr 7-8 MarketingProfs B2B forum Online B2B
Apr 7-9 Advanced Search Summit Napa, CA Digital
Apr-9 BET London iGaming Expo Online Gaming
Apr-10 Email Marketing Virtual Expo Online Email
Apr 10-11 a2 International Education Fairs Istanbul, Turkey Education
Apr 12-14 PORTUGAL International Conference on Marketing, Economics, Education and Disaster Management  Porto, Portugal Industry
Apr 12-23 Digital City Festival Online Digital
Apr 13-14 Direct Booking Summit Berlin, Germany Hotels
Apr 13-14 Digital Marketing Summit Seoul, Korea and Online Digital
Apr 13-15 eCOM360 Riga, Latvia Ecommerce
Apr 14-15 AI in Retail & Marketing Virtual Summit Online AI
Apr 14-16 Content Marketing Expo Tokyo, Japan Content
Apr-15 EiQ: The Intelligent Email Gathering Atlanta, GA Email
Apr-15 MGS Asia 21 (Mobile Growth Association) Online Mobile
Apr 15-16 Savant eCommerce London  London, UK Retail
Apr-15-16 AI in Marketing Summit London, UK AI
Apr 16-17 RevGrowth Virtual Summit Online Industry
Apr 18-23 ABA Bank Marketing School Atlanta, USA Industry
Apr 19-20 Rheinwerk Online Marketing Conference Cologne, Germany Industry
Apr 19-25 #MarTechFest Dial Up Series 3 Online MarTech
Apr-20 Adweek Elevate AI Online AI
Apr-20 Leicester Business Expo Leicester, UK Industry
Apr 20-21 All Influencer Marketing Conference Munich, Germany Influencer
Apr 20-22 Energy Marketing Conference Online Energy
Apr-21 DigiConf Online Digital
Apr 21-22 EiQ: The Intelligent Email Gathering Online Email
Apr 21-23 Content Marketing Conference Online Content
Apr 21-23 Digiday Modern Retail Summit Live Online Retail
Apr 21-23 Discover MarTech Online MarTech
Apr 21-23 Japan Marketing Week Tokyo, Japan Industry
Apr-22 Product Marketing Summit London, UK Industry
Apr 22-24 American Academic Research Conference on Global Business, Economics, Finance, Marketing, Tourism and Management Sciences New York, NY Industry
Apr 22-24 International Conference on Marketing, Tourism & Hospitality New York, NY Industry
Apr-23 Plan China London, UK Industry
Apr 23-25 GT Sports Marketing Show Edison, New Jersey Sports
Apr 25-26 DMIEXPO: Digital & Affiliate Conference Tel-Aviv, Israel Digital
Apr 25-26 Digital Marketing International Expo (DMI Expo) Rishon LeTsiyon, Israel Digital
Apr 26-27 SearchLove New York New York, NY Search
Apr 26-27 China Digital Marketing and Ecommerce Innovation Summit Shanghai, China Digital
Apr 26-28 Web & Digital Marketing Expo Chiba, Japan Digital
Apr 26-29 Digital Marketing Europe 2021Conference + Expo Online Digital
Apr 26-29 Midwest Digital Marketing Conference Online Digital
Apr 27-28 Adobe Summit Online Industry
Apr 27-28 APGA Marketing and Policy Conference Savannah, GA Industry
Apr 27-28 Savant eCommerce Stockholm Stockholm, Sweden Ecommerce
Apr 27-29 Content Marketing Conference Boston, USA Content
Apr 27-29 Content Marketing Conference Online Content
Apr-28 Michigan Marketing Summit Detroit, MI Industry
Apr 28-29 Youth Marketing Strategy London London, UK Industry
Apr-29 Social Media Strategies Summit Virtual Event Online Social
Apr-30 Digital Marketing Conference Krakow, Poland Digital
Apr-30 The Brand Safety Summit Online Security
Apr, TBD Savant eCommerce NY New York, NY Retail


May 2021

When Who Where What
May 2-6 Confab Minneapolis, MN Content
May 5-6 World Business Forum (WBF Miami) Miami, FL Industry
May 6-7 World Marketing & Sales Forum Milan (WMSF21) Milan, Italy Sales
May 8-9 TFCR International Conference on Marketing Management, Leadership, Innovation and Economics Istanbul, Turkey Industry
May 11-12 C3 (Conductor) New York, NY Search
May-13 MGS UK 21 (Mobile Growth Association) online Mobile
May 17-18 Interact 21 Columbus, OH Digital
May 18-20 Unbounce Call to Action Conference Vancouver, Canada Conversion
May -19 Youth Marketing Conference London, UK Industry
May 19-20 SMX London London, UK Search
May 20-22 Speaker Branding Summit Online Speaking
May 20-23 The Finance, Global Management, Economics, IT, Marketing, MIS and Healthcare Management Research Conference New York, NY Industry
May 25-26 Savant eCommerce Amsterdam Amsterdam, Netherlands Retail
May 27-30 The Global Business Marketing Finance IT Economics MIS and Healthcare Management Research Conference Beverly Hills, CA Industry
May-28 World Forum Digital Online Digital


Martech Sponsorship EDIT New Long

June 2021

When Who Where What
Jun 2-3 HeroConf: Austin Austin, TX PPC
Jun 2-3 #DMFW Global 2021 London, UK Digital
Jun 6-8 NRF2021: Forward Together New York, NY Retail
Jun 7-10 Festival of Marketing: Fast Forward London, UK Industry
Jun 9-10 DigiMarCon Midwest Chicago, IL Digital
Jun 10-12 Digital Elite Camp Laulasmaa, Estonia Digital
Jun 14-18 Product Marketing Festival Online Product Marketing
Jun-15 Campaign Breakfast Briefing
Online Customer EngagementJune
Jun 15-16 SMX Advanced 2021 Online Search
Jun 15-16 Savant eCommerce Amsterdam  Amsterdam, Netherlands Retail
Jun 15-16 Digital Marketing for Financial Services Virtual Summit 2021 Online Finance
Jun 16-17 DigiMarCon West Los Angeles, CA Digital
Jun 16-17 B2B Marketing Expo Online Industry
Jun-17 Dublin Tech Summit Online Tech
Jun-17 MGS LATAM 21 (Mobile Growth Association) online Mobile
Jun-18 MNSearch Summit St. Paul, MN Search
Jun 21-24 COLLISION Toronto, CA Other
Jun 22-23 Aviation Festival Asia Online Travel
Jun-25 Social Media Day: San Diego San Diego, CA Social
Jun 28-Jul 1 Mobile World Conference Barcelona, Online (Hybrid) Tech
Jun 29-30 K5  Future Retail Conference Berlin Retail
June 29-Jul 1 Social Media Week LA Los Angeles, Online (Hybrid) Influencer
Jun 29-30 Global Digital Marketing Summit Shanghai Industry
Jun 30-Jul 1 B2B Marketing Ignite Online Industry
 Jun 30 - Jul 3 London Affiliate Conference  London, UK  Affiliate


July 2021

When Who Where What
Jul-3 MeasureCamp Europe Online Digital
Jul 5-7 Academy of Marketing Online Industry
Jul 5-9 IRX Engage Summit Online eCommerce
Jul-7 eTailing Summit London, Online (Hybrid) eCommerce
Jul 7-8 Affiliate World Europe Barcelona, Spain Affiliate
Jul 7-8 MAD//Fest London London Online
Jul 7-8 eShow Barcelona Barcelona, Spain eCommerce
Jul-8 #MarTechFest Dial Up (Mini) Online MarTech
Jul-12 Marketing in Construction Summit Online Construction
Jul 12-14 MozCon Virtual  Online Industry
Jul 13-15 YMS : Online USA Online Industry
Jul-15 MGS New York 21 (Mobile Growth Association) online Mobile
Jul 19-20 Affiliate Summit East New York Industry
Jul 19-21 ANA Digital and Social Media Conference Carlsbad(CA), Online (Hybrid) Digital
Jul 19-22 The Special Event Miami Industry
Jul 19-23 Talent Acquisition Week Online Talent Acquisition
Jul 20-22 NAMA Agri Marketing Conference Kansas City, USA Agriculture
Jul  21-22 Product Marketing Summit Dublin, Ireland Product
Jul 21-22 Online Retailer Conference Sydney, Australia eCommerce


Martech Sponsorship EDIT New Long

August 2021

When Who Where What
Aug 3-4 GROW New York Industry
Aug 5-6 Engage Conference 2021 Portland, OR Digital
Aug 5-6 Digital Summit MN Minneapolis, USA Digital
Aug 11-12 Digital Summit Atlanta Atlanta, USA Digital 
Aug 11-12 Social Media Week: Lima Lima, Peru Social
Aug-12 MGS Canada 21 (Mobile Growth Association) Online Mobile
Aug 17-18 Digital Summit Kansas Kansas, USA Digital 
Aug-18 #DMWF Asia 2021 Online Digital 
Aug 18-19 Social Media Strategies Summit First Responders Online Social
Aug 24-25 RetailX Chicago, USA eCommerce
Aug 24-25 State of Social '21 Perth, Australia Social
Aug 25-26 DigiMarCon Australia Sydney, Australia Digital
Aug 25-26 Digital Summit Philadelphia Philadelphia, USA Digital 
Aug-27 Utah DMC Digital Marketing Conference Salt Lake City, UT Digital
Aug 31-Sep 2 Gartner Marketing Symposium/Xpo Online Industry


September 2021

When Who Where What
Sep-2 Growth Marketing Summit Frankfurt, Germany Digital
Sep 7-8 DMEXCO 21 Online Digital
Sep 8-12 #SMWDurban Durban, South Africa Social
Sep 9-10 Digital Summit Washington Washington DC, USA Digital
Sep 9-10 Ragan Social Media Conference Florida, USA Social
Sep 13-14 MAICON21 Online AI
Sep 13-15 Traffic and Conversion Summit San Diego, Online (Hybrid) Digital
Sep 14-15 Savant eCommerce London 2021 London, UK Retail
Sep 14-15 Customer Relationship & Marketing Cannes, France Industry
Sep 14-15 Youth Marketing Strategy London, UK Industry
Sep 15-16 Digital Summit Detroit Detroit, USA Digital
Sep-20 MarketEd Live Nottingham, UK Industry
Sep 20-22 Localogy 2021 Los Angeles, USA Industry
Sep 20-24 London Tech Week Online Industry
Sep 21-22 Digital Summit Portland Portland, USA Digital
Sep 21-23 Money 20/20 Europe Amsterdam Finance
Sep-22 #DMWF North America West Online Digital
Sep 22-23 The Social Shake-Up 2021 Atlanta, USA Social 
Sep 22-25 FinCon 2021 Austin, Online (Hybrid) Finance
Sep 24-25 International Franchise Expo New York, USA Industry
Sep 27-29 SaaStr Annual 2021 San Francisco, Online (Hybrid) Industry
Sep 28-29 Digital Elite Day Online Digital
Sep 28-29 VidSummit Los Angeles, USA Influencer
Sep 28-29 CommerceNext IRL New York, USA eCommerce
Sep 28-30 Technology for Marketing Online Industry
Sep 28-30 eCommerce Expo Online eCommerce
Sep 28-Oct 1 Content Marketing World Ohio, Online (Hybrid) Content
Sep 30-Oct 1 TNW Conference Amsterdam, Online (Hybrid) Industry


Martech Sponsorship EDIT New Long

October 2021

When Who Where What
Oct 5-6 Digital Summit Nashville Nashville, USA Digital
Oct 5-7 Digital Sales & Marketing World Connecticut, USA, Online (Hybrid) Digital
Oct 5-7 One-to-One Digital Marketing Biarritz, France Digital
Oct 6-7 Experiential Marketing Summit Chicago, USA Industry
Oct 6-7 Product Marketing Summit Seattle, USA Product
Oct-7 Energy Marketing Conference New York, USA Energy
Oct 10-13 Siinda Live: Berlin Berlin, Germany Industry
Oct-12 MGS MENA 21 (Mobile Growth Association) Online Mobile
Oct 12-14 The Event Planner Expo New York, USA Industry
Oct 12-14 Strategic Marketing 2021 Online Industry
Oct 12-14 Inbound 2021 Online Marketing
Oct 12-13 Digital Summit Tampa Florida, USA Digital
Oct 13-14 Sales & Marketing Effectiveness in Chemicals Cologne, Germany Chemical
Oct 13-14 IRX & eDX  Birmingham, UK eCommerce
Oct 13-14 Retail Week Live London, UK eCommerce
Oct-14 3XE Social Dublin, Ireland Industry
Oct 14-15 ADWorld Experience Bologna, Italy, Online (Hybrid) Advertising
Oct 17-20 Marketing Mania Dubai, UAE Industry 
Oct 18-20 Promo Marketing Power Meeting Utah, USA Industry
Oct 18-20 Senior Care Sales & Marketing Summit Las Vegas, USA Industry
Oct 18-21 Advertising Week New York New York, USA Advertising
Oct 18-21 Social Media Strategies Summit Higher Education Online Social
Oct 18-22 Festival of Marketing Online Industry
Oct 19-20 Canadian Meetings & Expos Toronto, Canada Industry
Oct 19-20 Performance Live London, UK Industry
Oct 20-21 Product Marketing Summit Boston, USA Product
Oct 20-21 Technology for Marketing Asia Marina Bay Sands, Singapore Industry
Oct 20-Nov 4 CONEX Online Industry
Oct-21 Hello Conference New Jersey, USA Industry
Oct-21 The Influencer Marketing Show London, Online (Hybrid) Influencer
Oct-22  #MarTechFest Global 2021 London, UK MarTech
Oct 22-24 LMA Annual Conference Los Angeles, USA Legal
Oct 24-27 Money 20/20 US Las Vegas, USA Finance
Oct 25-26 Marketing Analytics and Data Science Florida, USA Industry
Oct 25-26 Richmond Marketing Forum USA New York, USA Industry
Oct 25-27 Digiday Publishing Summit Europe Barcelona, Spain Industry
Oct 26-27 Savant eCommerce Berlin Berlin, Germany eCommerce
Oct 26-27 Marketing Leaders Summit Melbourne, Australia Industry
Oct-27 Tech Crunch Sessions Online Industry
Oct 27-28 Digital Summit Chicago Chicago, USA Digital
Oct 27-29 AdWorld Conference Online Advertising
Oct 27-29 Japan IT Week Chiba, Japan Industry


November 2021

When Who Where What
Nov 1-4 Web Summit-Marketing & Media Lisbon, Portugal  Industry
Nov-2 Wisconsin Marketing Summit Wisconsin, USA Industry
Nov 2-4 Affiliate Summit West Las Vegas, USA Industry
Nov 2-4 Social Media Week London, Online (Hybrid) Social
Nov-3 Product Marketing Summit Sydney, Australia Product
Nov 3-4 AI Summit Silicon Valley Santa Clara, USA Industry
Nov-4 #MarTechFest APAC Sydney, Australia MarTech
Nov 4-5 Chemical Sales & Marketing Toolbox Frankfurt, Germany Chemical
Nov 8-12 World Search Marketing Conference Milan, Italy Search
Nov 9-11 Imex America Las Vegas, USA Industry
Nov-11 Product Marketing Summit Singapore Product
Nov 15-17 ICBEMM Oxford, UK Industry
Nov 16-17 Savant eCommerce Barcelona Barcelona, Spain eCommerce
Nov 16-17 B2B Marketing Expo London, UK B2B Marketing
Nov 17-18 Product Marketing Summit Chicago, USA Product
Nov 17-18 The Martech Summit London, UK MarTech
Nov 18 International Search Summit Barcelona, Spain SEO
Nov 18 B2B Marketing Leaders Forum Melbourne, Australia Industry
Nov 23-24 DMWF Europe 2021 Amsterdam Digital
Nov 24-25 The Business StartUp London, UK Industry
Nov 25-26 Product Marketing Summit London, UK Product
Nov 30-Dec 2 IBTM World Barcelona, Spain Industry

December 2021

When Who Where What
Dec 2 Product Marketing Summit Toronto, Canada Product
Dec 2-4 International Conference on Marketing Tenerife, Spain MarTech
Dec 3-6 VidCon Abu Dhabi Influencer
Dec 7 Nashville eCommerce Summit Nashville, TN Retail
Dec 7-8 MediaPost’s Email Insider Summit Online Email 
Dec 7-8 B2B Online Connect  Online B2B
Dec 7-9 Expo! Expo! Philadelphia, PA, Online (Hybrid) Industry
Dec 8-9 Digital Summit: Dallas Dallas, TX Digital
Dec 8-9 Product Marketing Summit New York, USA Product
Dec 8-9 ANA Influencer Marketing Virtual Conference Online Influencer
Dec 14-15 Digital Summit: Charlotte Charlotte, NC Digital 
Dec 14-15 MediaPost’s Search & Performance Insider Summit Online Search


January 2022

When Who Where What
Jan 16-18 NRF 2022: Retail’s Big Show New York, NY Retail
Jan 19-21 Japan IT Week: Osaka Osaka, Japan Digital
Jan 31-Feb 1 Hero Conf Austin Austin, TX PPC
Jan 31 - Feb 4 SUPERWEEK 2022 Hungary Analytics


February 2022

When Who Where What
Feb 2-5 iGB Affiliate London London, UK Affliate
Feb 15-17 eTail Australia Sydney, Australia Retail
Feb 22 Boston eCommerce Summit Boston, MA Retail
Feb 22-23 Digital Marketing for Financial Services Canada  Online Digital
Feb 24 E-commerce Berlin Berlin, Germany Retail
Feb 28-Mar 1 Affiliate World Global: Dubai Dubai, UAE Affiliate


March 2022

When Who Where What

Mar 1

Minneapolis eCommerce Summit Minneapolis, MN Retail
Mar 8-10 DX3 Canada Canada Retail
Mar 14-16 Social Media Marketing World San Diego, CA Social
Mar 14-16 Hero Conference London  London, UK PPC
Mar 16-17 SMX Munich Munich, Germany Search
Mar 23-26 Podcast Movement Evolutions Los Angeles, CA Podcasting
Mar 24-25 SearchLove: San Diego San Diego, CA Search
Mar 24 App Promotion Summit: London London, UK Mobile
Mar 27 Shoptalk Las Vegas, NV Retail
Mar29-31 E-Marketing Paris Paris, France Digital 


Martech Sponsorship EDIT New Long


How long will we stay in the virtual world? Will we ever venture out into the real world again? The answer – yes. Probably. At some point – maybe?  

So, no one has the perfect answer, but what we do know is that we have an abundance of digital opportunities at our fingertips, so let’s use them. We don’t know for sure what the future holds for events marketing, but we won’t let that stop us from continuing to innovate, educate and captivate. If we know one thing for sure, it’s that events marketing is not about to sit still.   

We’re going to give you a little helping hand to hone in on the opportunities events marketing has to offer pre, during and post pandemic. From the explosion of digital events and the variety they have to offer, marketing events best practice, questions to ask your organiser to what the industry has in store from 2020 and beyond. So, you’d better buckle up. 

The Power of Events Marketing

For many businesses, in-person interaction is the life and soul of the strategy. In-person events present an exclusive array of hyper-targeted, high value leads with a unique level of engagement which has yet to be replicated in any virtual scenario.

The personal connection that can be formed from a face-to-face conversation often translates into a unique, memorable engagement and potential ongoing relationship between client and customer.

It removes us from the noise and distractions of our day to day lives so we can be fully present in the moment with no overrunning meetings or last-minute cancellations. The power of the in-person interaction may even go as far as solidifying a sales meeting there and then.

So here lies the challenge. How do we replicate the value that in-person events offer in a world that currently restricts us from being within 2 metres of any new acquaintance? A world still filled with unpredictability as restrictions are continuously being released and retracted.

The events marketing space have been forced to get creative. Rather than strike out the possibility of all events for the foreseeable, many event organisers have tapped into technology and turned to the digital world. And 7 months in, the digital event space is booming.

The Explosion of Digital Events

Back in 2019, the majority of marketers (61% to be exact) believed that in-person events were the most critical marketing channel – according to Bizzabo, a whopping 93% of event marketers plan to invest in virtual events going forward - Bizzabo, 2020.

events marketing statevents marketing stat

However, we’ve seen mixed success with the shift. It’s not enough for organisers to simply pick up the previous success of an in-person event and replicate it online. In order to reap the rewards of an online event, organisations will have to re-strategise and review their event goals.

A lot can be lost within the journey from stage to screen, and the way content is consumed virtually is a totally different ball game that needs to be re-considered. How is the event utilising digital opportunities and not just using it as a substitute? While digital events can offer a wider reach to the audience and save costs, it’s much harder to replicate engagement and captivate the attention of the attendees.

Has the host factored in where the conversations are going continue now that they can’t take place in person? Is there a seamless journey for follow up calls to be scheduled? A live Q&A? Online chat? Or social media?

It’s also important to consider the virtual platform that will play the ‘venue’ in the online event. An online event hosted on a high-quality virtual event platform has the capability to streamline the process and customer journey. Nothing kills a virtual event like a technical issue. Attendees will use the platform to view content, network and interact with sponsors, so the power of the platform shouldn’t be underestimated.

Virtual event platforms have the ability to host:

  • Event livestreams
  • Virtual networking
  • Schedule and agenda

Sadly, gone are the days of excitement for a virtual pub quiz and a zoom catch up call. As virtual is becoming the new norm – our attention span begins to wear thin. Virtual events are quickly becoming a crowded space and there needs to be something special in order to stand out from the crowd. If it’s not the venue, the music or the atmosphere then what’s it going to be and how will it translate into the virtual world? Online events that have thought outside of the box to offer an experience that is different to their competitors are the events that will likely generate the greatest returns.

Our top 4 virtual events not to miss:

Making the Most of a Digital Event

Amongst new cost per lead considerations, a new scope of audience reach and a decrease in face-to-face interactions, virtual events offer a variety of benefits as well as obstacles to be considered.

One of the big questions to ask in the new era of events marketing is: Are you getting the most out of digital exposure?

The power of online promises higher reach, and potential for seamless, digitally enhanced conversions if digital brand exposure is utilised, and utilised well.

Building social media into an event marketing strategy is essential now more than ever as it allows brands to connect with attendees both before and after the event.

As a sponsor, negotiating the maximum amount of social posts that mention and tag your brand can increase both reach and visibility to the audience. This provides a platform to open the conversation and continue the communication with not only the attendees of the event, but also with a wider audience that may not have been able to attend.

Consideration checklist: 

  • Agree a specific quantity of promotional social posts from the organiser tagging your brand 
  • Negotiate your brand logo and backlink on the organiser’s website 
  • Negotiate additional promotional content (blog post, Q&A etc.)

Variations of Digital Marketing Events

Online marketing events don’t have to be a one-stop shop. There are a variety of traditional marketing events that can be transported into, if not enhanced by the power of the digital world. Each one attracts a slightly different attendee list offering individual benefits depending on the goals of an events marketing strategy.


Webinar’s are often hosted live by one or two presenters who can virtually address a large audience at any one time. While webinars often feature a Q&A at the end of a session, attendees' interaction is typically limited throughout the presentation.

Webinars often cater to a specific industry and level of skill and seniority in order to provide the most value to the attendees. By registering with personal details often such as company and job title, webinars can provide the perfect stack of virtual business cards from a very targeted audience.

Virtual round tables

Round table events are often made up of a pretty exclusive guest list of VIPs, targeted mainly at the decision makers of a company. They provide the opportunity to engage in meaningful and thought-provoking conversations and build a solid base of trust with the attendees. With the guest list being about quality not quantity, the number of attendees are often are the lower side - making it much easier to engage in conversation in a virtual setting.

Online masterclasses

Like webinars, masterclasses usually cater to a specific industry with an even more specific topic area in mind. They typically attract more senior attendees with a singular focus or skill-set that they’re looking to expand on, in depth. Masterclasses are usually hosted in more intimate groups so where more engagement is encouraged.

Long-term relationships can be established and built between a brand’s marketing and sales teams through demand generation. In most cases, the digital climate doesn’t act as a hindrance and even during a pandemic - budget permitted, you could find yourself lucky enough to continue to utilise demand generation – business as usual.

Some great demand generation options to consider are as follows:

  • Ebook Content Syndication
  • Ebook Content co-sponsorship
  • Paid media outreach: e.g. LinkedIn & Facebook

The Future of Marketing Events

It's likely that any in-person marketing events during the rest of this year (and who knows how far into the future) will have to be run on a smaller scale with fewer attendees, taking into account social distancing measures and travel restrictions - which look to be sticking around.

However, the production and management required to run a small event can be surprisingly similar to running one 10X in size – which in theory doesn’t make for a great ROI. Similar costs going out, but a significant decrease in number of attendees going in. But this may not necessarily be a bad thing. Smaller guest lists could mean more intimate conversations and more personal relationships can be formed between client and customer.

But what if there was a solution on the horizon that offers the best of both worlds? Enter: Hybrid events.

Hybrid events are a creative combination between both in-person and virtual marketing events. That’s right, you really can have your cake and eat it too. Hybrid events have already proved their success and take place across the globe. A great example is the Olympics. A live event set in a real-life venue with an engaging crowd along with attendees and interviewers on site. The event is also broadcast live to millions of viewers around the world.

So, there may have to be a little more crowd control in this day and age, but you get the idea. By even having 1% of your audience in-person, the atmosphere can resonate through the screen to the remaining 99%.

In a rapidly expanding digital world, we’re collecting more customer data than ever before. Understanding and utilising this data means we can better understand our customer and offer them a more meaningful, personalised experience. With the majority of our customer data living online, and virtual marketing events here to stay, it’s time to unite the two and inject a personalised experienced into our marketing events strategies.

The digital marketing event space so far has been restricted to standalone webinars and versions of virtual events we haven't yet figured out. Webinars have remained completely disconnected from in-person events and these gaps have been reflected in the customer journey.   

Could 2021 be the year that marketing events step out of the silo?

68% of event marketers reported that a hybrid solution that can manage both virtual and in-person events will play a key role in the 2020 and 2021 event strategies according to Bizzabo, 2020.

hybrid stat graphic

If organisers are able to innovate the same level of experience online, while hosting more intimate (socially distanced) in-person events, the hybrid event may be the answer to all our prayers.

Bviewing both in-person and virtual events as part of a series of connected engagements, marketers will be able to create a connected, omnichannel journey and step out of the event marketing silo once and for all.

Events Marketing Best Practice

There’s no shortage of marketing events to choose from, so selecting the best fit for your brand and narrowing down the most successful marketing events can often seem an impossible task. While the common goal for events marketing is to build brand exposure and generate leads, to measure the true success of an event - there’s more to it than totting up ticket sales and skimming over ROI.

It’s also important to consider getting out what you put in. The best results come from great communication and collaboration between sponsor and organiser.

Your events marketing succescan be bolstered by a great session type, topic and title, ensuring maximum promotion via your own channels as well as the organisers, seeking content publishing opportunities to the event audience, considering attendee special offers and ensuring speed to lead processes are defined for post event connectionsPre, during and post event planning are equally as important to ensure maximum exposure and success. 

Event selection

The criteria for selecting your events should centre around the attendees the event brings in. Attendees are where you will find 90% of your value as a sponsor, so if the attendees aren’t right for your brand chances are the event isn’t either. Focus on audience relevancy and access to the attendees rather than being blind-sided by the size of the guest list.

Quantifying objective measurements and demographics of the type of audience a specific event attracts can determine whether the event is right for you.

Begin with the end in mind. Lead generation and conversion comes first.

Make sure the people you’re going to be surrounded by are decision makers and budget spenders. Ask your hosts the provide job title overviews so you can grasp the seniority of the attendee list. You want to be talking to people in the position to make your conversions count. Even if they’re not in a position to spend the budget there and then, you want to be connecting with the people who have the power to do so at some point in the future.

Event management

Integrate your content marketing strategy with your sponsorship. Think pre, post and during the event. Connecting with attendees starts before way before you set foot into the venue (or opening your laptop in these #WFH times) and in fact, making the connections beforehand is more vital than ever with virtual events.

Shout out on social media. Follow the event hashtag to connect with those attending before and after the event. DM on the day to meet (or virtually chat) on the day of, ideally by this point you’ve already established some common ground. Connect with all the event speakers and push out organic and paid posts shouting about your sponsorship and ensure you tag the event organiser and speaker to gain maximum reach.

Bring your customer journey to life. Make a memorable experience people talk about and stand out from the sponsorship crowd. In the real world think swag packs and quality merch to bring branding beyond the day. In virtual presentations think about a digital call to action that takes attendees to your site or redirect to other content you have produced.

Have your event follow up sequences seamlessly prepared to send within 1 hour of receiving attendee data from the organiser. Get app contacts researched and email addresses guessed to speed up the follow up process.

Measuring success

According to Integrate, pre-COVID more marketing budget was spent on events than any other channel. However, marketing events continue to be the hardest channel in which to measure a demonstrable return.

The conversations determining the success of marketing events often revolve around three little letters: R O I. And most of the time, the conversation stops there. But often this doesn’t paint the full picture. If you’re only measurement is ROI, you risk assuming too much.

So, here’s a curve ball: a great marketing events’ purpose is not to get you cash in the door – it's to get you connected to the right people. And as you can imagine, this can be a little harder to measure.

Ultimately, it comes down making sure you have sales qualified leads and connecting with people that matter, people who are relevant and profiled against the audience.

However, it would be inaccurate to measure whether or not someone has purchased your product based on that event alone. For example, you could be connected with the right person, but it just so happens that you catch them at a time that they don’t have a budget available to them. This doesn’t mean the event wasn’t successful. It means the timing was wrong.

Equally, it could be that you were connected with the right person, but they ended up selecting an alternative provider over your solution. Again, that’s not necessarily because the event wasn’t successful. It may simply be that one of your competitors had benefits over your own solution, or it could be that the lead hadn’t been converted at the speed, and the depth, that they should have been.

There are a number of external variables that could have contributed to the lead not taking a particular solution. This isn’t to say the marketing event didn’t achieve what it should, in terms of connecting the right people to the right product.

It’s not to say that event marketing shouldn’t be ROI driven, but you need to understand the full customer journey to evaluate the true success of an event. Ensure you base your assessment on metrics which the event provider can control and not on external variables, or you face the risk of an inaccurate evaluation of events where the extraneous variable is a $hit hot salesperson that attended one event and not the other.

It’s important to be aware of external factors that may influence your marking. Take COVID – you could still be attending virtual or social distanced marketing events and being connected with all the right people, but in the midst of a pandemic, marketing budgets are tighter than usual and so you’re not seeing the conversion you would anticipate.

Rather than changing your method of lead generation, change your criteria. You can ask a marketing event to provide you with the right connections, but you can’t ask it to provide you with the cure for COVID, or bags of client cash. The scenario will then unfold where those connections can be nurtured until there is the right time to access their budget.

Top Questions to Ask your Organiser

  • Can I see a sample attendee list?
    Asking for the previous years’ attendee list is a great way to gain insight.
  • Can you provide an audience overview of industry, company size and revenue, job title and seniority splits?
  • How many attendees do you typically attract?
    And many of those are sponsors?
  • Who has sponsored in the past, are they renewing?
    If not why not?
  • Who will speak at the same time as us?
  • Do you offer exclusive vendor category sponsors?
  • Do we get attendee details?
  • How many people can you guarantee at our session?
  • What event tech do you use? 
  • What is the data sharing process post event? 
  • What session topics and themes have been popular in the past? 
  • Are there opportunities to publish to your audience pre-event? 
  • Do you share branded assets for us to use across our own platforms? 

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