ead generation at a virtual event is quite different from the lead generation you're used to at McCormick Place or the Las Vegas Convention Center. At a physical event, leads are binary. You or your sales team decides to either scan someone or not scan them. It's an all-or-nothing sort of thing.

At PACK EXPO Connects, leads can take on several different flavors, in varying degrees of engagement. It's totally different.

First, let me dispel a myth: Contrary to popular belief, a lead is NOT generated when someone clicks onto your showroom. Even if they click onto your content such as products or collateral links, no leads are generated. Why is this? We believe that providing contact information of anyone who clicks anything would chill attendee participation. If attendees had to worry that their contact info would be given up every time they click on anything related to any exhibitor (a showroom, a video, a product, a collateral link), they would never click. Such an onerous data sharing policy would be a tremendous disincentive to even participate. We are trying to strike a balance between the attendee's need to have a little "space" to poke around and absorb information without being hounded by salespeople, and the exhibitor's need for leads. The exception to this rule is collateral links--anyone who clicks that will count as a lead, but only after they are logged in. (Collateral links are not visible unless attendees are registered and logged in.)

If you've purchased our Gold, Diamond and Platinum packages for past shows, you're used to the idea of someone adding your company to their show planner to generate a lead. But now, attendees can add not just your company, but any of your products or your content to their show planner. It's akin to bookmarking or saving your content, because they find it valuable enough to save. Pretty valuable signal of intent, don't you think?

But that's not the only way leads are generated. If someone watches your live demo, that also generates a lead. That's roughly analogous to people coming into your booth at PACK EXPO and crowding around a machine demo. They are signaling with their time that they find what you have to say valuable enough to either add the demo to their planner (which generates a lead) or just watch it on the spur of the moment. Certainly worth a follow-up.

A third way of generating leads is when an attendee initiates a live private chat with one of your booth personnel via the virtual business cards in your showroom. The mere act of initiating the chat generates the lead. No form for them to fill out.

Finally, a fourth way of generating leads is when an attendee clicks on the link in your virtual showroom or demo to request a meeting.

Four ways of generating leads, all in varying degrees of intent.

The following fields are included in each lead:

First name
Last name
Job Title

Work Address
Work Zip/Postal Code
Work City
Work State/Province
Work Country

Primary Industry
Job Duties
Buying Interest Area (major product categories of interest)
Plant Expansion status

Leads dissemination and analysis

Leads with the above fields are available at any time (and in advance of your demos) by logging into your Map Your Show exhibitor portal. Leads (with the same fields above) are also disseminated on a nightly basis to your LeadWorks account through the PMMI Media Group Marketing Cloud.

In both Map Your Show and LeadWorks, we'll differentiate between the different kinds of leads so that you know how they were generated. You'll know whether the lead came from a demo, a chat, or adding content, so you can prioritize them as you wish.

In terms of timing, unlike a physical trade show, you will receive the leads in advance of the show, as attendees start to come to the site and build their plans. We don't expect many will do this far in advance; the closer we get to the dates of this show, the more we expect people to begin preparing for the show, so please set your expectations accordingly. But if an attendee registers and adds your demo to their plan a month before the show, you will get their contact info a month before the show!

Here's the icing on the cake: All your show leads are automatically mapped to Converge, our proprietary account-based marketing attribution tool (six years in the making!) that gives you a no-nonsense view of marketing attribution that's so easy to use that your grandmother can understand it. (By the way, Converge is free to all PMMI Media Group advertisers and PACK EXPO Connects exhibitors.)

Further, if you have Scout installed on your website (our lightweight tracking beacon), we can show a clear picture of what certain prospects are doing on your website, after they click through from your media campaigns with PMMI Media Group, or after they interact with you at PACK EXPO Connects. We also show return visits, days, weeks and even months later.

Too good to be true? Talk to Tara Abbott, North American Marketing Manager at Domino. "I took a look at our Converge and Scout report and was nothing short of blown away," she wrote me in an email. "I cannot tell you what a game changer this is. We are blown away. Truly. This is the attribution we want to see."

And best of all, there's no charge to use these tools. If you haven't seen Scout and Converge in action, please reach out to your PMMI Media Group sales expert immediately and ask about Converge and Scout. These folks are trained in marketing attribution and can show you the marvels of this new tool. Don't know who your rep is? No problem, reach out to Wendy Sawtell, our VP/Sales and she'll connect you right away.



Lead generation at a virtual event is a rich tapestry of behavior. It's not better or worse than a physical trade show, it's just different. Think of it as the difference between analog lead generation and digital lead generation. (If you like that analogy, a tip o' the bucket hat to Christine Smallwood, who came up with it.) Because this data is so varied and granular, tools like Converge and Scout can piece together what are in essence a bunch of disparate data points into a high-fidelity picture of buying intent and behavior.

Aug 24, 2020
Lead generation

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