Over the past 6 years we have helped a number of wedding venues with their online marketing and SEO and we are delighted to have been invited to many of the venues and enjoyed a lot of events. One of the big questions we are always asked by the wedding venues is ‘How can we get more corporate leads and clients to use the venue?’ It is a challenge to get the higher paying and more likely to result in repeat business client as they are also more likely to use the venue during the week when less wedding are booked. Well it has been a few months of research and training but we are happy to say that there is a solution for Venues that will help them get more corporate clients.
First off let us have a look at some figures!
A Whopping 98% of those B2B visitors that visit your corporate pages are likely to leave your website without actually participating in any form of contact with your venue or your company (lets face it this works on all levels if you are trying to attract corporate clients!). A lot of my day is spent talking to people that say the immortal words “I get a lot of visits to my website if only I could convert those into leads I could convert them!” Analytics will give you a breakdown of your visitors and it will also get you to understand your visitor journey and at what point these customers have left your website.
So if 98% of customers leave without contacting you that leaves you with only 2% of your visitors come through to actually talk to you, then you have your conversion rate on there. By the time you have finished you might convert one in every four hundred visits to your corporate pages! Depending on how many of these are actual bookings and proper leads this works out as an expensive return on investment.
So How Can Wedding Venues Get More Corporate Leads?
OK there is another question that comes to mind first. What if you could get a majority of those 98% of visitors contact details, would you have the structure to be able to convert them into leads and clients? If you have a sales process or a sales team in place to follow up on a whole load more leads than you get at the moment. It will also require a little bit of training and a little effort but all in all this little process works and we have seen some amazing results, it might seem a little freaky at first but overall it is one of the best methods for generating corporate leads available. So there are a few stages with a few steps in each stage, we are going to walk you through all of it and it is well worth it. Remember to stick with it cause the final part makes it all fit into place and gives you access to a majority of those 98% that are leaving the page.
On Site Factors
The first part of this solution is to look at the onsite factors of your website. If you are making things over complicated and making people jump through a million hoops then you are likely to lose the visitor as they will just go to another site where it is easier for them to get what they want and need. So lets take a look at a few things you can do to adjust your onsite issues.
Make sure your website is set up in a way that you can collect leads and ensure that you don’t miss out on those that are contacting you. We know that you want to collect as much information as possible to reduce the amount of work at your end, but this is the bit before the first date, the bit where you ask for someone’s number and if you can call them. At this point you don’t need to know their inside leg measurement and what the name of their uncle’s cat was when they were 10 years old. Long complicated forms put people off contacting you and if you use a long form to try and nail every last bit of information that you can out of them, you will have a much higher bounce rate.
Keep your contact forms simple. You don’t need to know their address, you don’t need them to login to anything, heck you don’t even need to take their telephone number at this point, simply an email address where you can get some information to them to break into a communication with them. If you ask for too much information, yes you will get qualified leads as you will know a lot more about them but you will also put a lot of people who don’t know exact details off. The below form is the perfect example:
Which Venue? If you have more than one, why does it matter? Is it not easier to break a conversation with someone if you need to contact them to ask these questions and offer any number of different solutions? The same goes for date and delegates. They might not actually know at this point, but because your form is asking for that information you might well have put someone off making contact with you. Do you really need to know their postcode and house number at this point? Yes you have funky software that will work it out for them but why do you actually need it at this first dance point? Truth be known, you don’t!
Offer information easily! Every day we visit sites that offer information to people but you have to jump through 50 hoops to get it. I am and always have been a firm believer in the K.I.S.S. method of websites to get people to follow step by step what you want them to do and where you want them to go, if you ask people to do too much then they won’t do it, result is you lose a lead.
Venues are renowned for having beautiful literature and amazing brochures. The internet allows these to be delivered in digital format saving thousands in printing costs, however the delivery of digital content is just that, an opportunity. Ask your visitor for an email address to get them the brochure, a simple form with an auto responder does a number of things:
- You deliver your content easily to their inbox, so they have to use a valid email address in order to get it.
- You put your email address in their contact list.
- In doing one and two you get to follow up with an email that gently asks them if they have any questions that you can answer.
Also remember that to add someone to your email list in the UK doesn’t require you to ask for double authorisation as it does in the USA. (Although keep an eye on this because as this blog post was written the Queen announced in a speech to parliament that companies must get permission before sending promotional emails)
Remember that your corporate clients are very different to your wedding clients. Your bride and groom are looking for their perfect day and to be able to not have to worry about a thing, they are looking for details on your services and want to know everything from the bottom to the top, from the start of their day to the very end of it and that you will be able to provide them with everything they are looking for to complete their perfect day. Corporate clients are looking for an executive overview of your services, they want to know that you can offer the services you offer but without all the fluff and fuss that goes with the wedding clients (sorry bride and grooms, sorry to wedding suppliers but when it comes to the difference between the two fluff is by far in the way when it comes to corporate and business clients).
How To Drive More Corporate Clients To Your Website
There are a few things to do that are different to drive corporate clients to your website. In this section we are going to take a look and see what can be done to drive more corporate clients through to your website. This is the next important stage to grabbing those 98% in the final stage.
As we mentioned before, the tone and style of information that you are providing to your corporate clients is very much different to that you are giving to your brides and grooms. In many cases, brides and grooms haven’t got a clue about how to go about booking a venue, where as your average corporate client has probably booked a few venues and arranged a few events already so have a good understanding of the terminology that is used. Don’t try and be flash and use clever wording just see what others are doing with their text and stick to what the normal wording would be, don’t copy others websites but if you are selling a meeting room then call it a meeting room, don’t suddenly come up with a new fandangled title to try and impress as it will just confuse at what it can be used for. Offer your information in every format you possibly can, Word, PDF, Video you name it put it out there.
Also another thing which I know is like stating the bleeding obvious but if you are using email to promote your venue, please make sure you segregate your list from your wedding and your corporate clients. You would be shocked by the number of people we come across that don’t bother with this. If you have a high delete rate on your emails because you are sending corporate information to brides and grooms this can have an effect on your SEO efforts. Have a clean segregated list and you will benefit!
There are a few things we see on a daily basis that make us cringe when we get to a website. A few weeks ago we were asked to look at a venue website and the first thing we noticed was in the corporate section of their website, and they were trying to book conferences and meetings through their site, they had pictures and video of weddings. If you are looking to put images in front of your potential customers then make them targeted. Targeted images will also help you when it comes to being found in the search engines.
Obviously there is a big difference between the floor plans that you offer for weddings and the floor plans you offer for your corporate events and awards ceremonies. In many cases it helps having PDF downloads of your proposed seating plans to give people ideas of what can be achieved. Remember that you can follow this up with pictures of your events! If you don’t have any seating plans for your events then check out http://www.toptableplanner.com and draw yourself up some table plans, the software is excellent and very easy to use (I can use it and I can break the toaster!). You can also add these to presentations and put them on sites like SlideShare which will help your SEO.
Offer information, offer guides, offer event coverage, give information about events you have done, interview your suppliers but you need to be blogging to ensure that you are offering up to date and you are keeping those pesky search engines happy!
If you are looking for more corporate clients then you need to be looking to get onto more business orientated social media. Yes it helps to be on Twitter and Facebook, Twitter is a great place to get your name out and build a good solid reputation but it is the likes of Facebook which are more geared towards personal use than they are B2B. Look towards making sure that your Linkedin and your Xing accounts are all up to date and you are communicating and building your followers on those networks.
So What About The 98% That Don’t Contact You?
This is where you take your analytics and your traffic to a whole new level. This will push your leads and your conversions through the roof. Have a look at the video below for the Lead Forensics software:
Here is the key to making this software work for you, your marketing department and your sales department, it will work based on the pages you install it on. So if you want to avoid getting hundreds of people looking at weddings come through to your corporate sales team then simply setup an alert on your software that tells you what pages they have visited and how long they spent on each page. So you can say “If the visitor spends more than 7 seconds on your corporate pages then you would like to be alerted!” Bingo, you get an alert to say you’ve got a corporate lead. On top of that in the software you get a nice easy to understand screen that you can use to discover who your contact would be that is doing the searching.
The REALLY awesome thing with the software is it comes with a success path as the idea of the software is to get you a return on your investment and a constant stream of new customers. You have nothing to lose in simply asking for a free trial from Lead Forensics and taking advantage of seeing what you could be doing. It takes a few seconds to request and is well worth it. Simply click here!
To Sum Up
The last thing and the conclusion of this whole thing really is to keep your promotions constant. If you promote sporadically you won’t get the steady flow of visits that your sales team can handle. The key to a lot of online promotion is hard work and there is no question in our minds that all of what is in this article is tried and tested and if you go ahead and implement it then you will see amazing growth in your corporate leads.