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Why top level executives (Fortune 1000) attend conferences

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In an effort to learn more about the conferencing behaviours of Fortune 1000 executives, Goodman Lantern conducted a survey featuring 191 top-level panelists. Our main aim was to discover why these executives choose to attend certain business events, how they research upcoming conferences, and what motivates them to participate as exhibitors or sponsors rather than attending in an observational capacity.

Determining the “Worth” of Attending an Event

An overwhelming 62.6% of respondents choose to attend conferences based on the quality of marketing and communication received before the event. The second-most popular method, ranking in at 41.3%, of decision-making in this regard is learning about these events from peers and colleagues.

Reasons for Attending an Event

One of our main motivators in conducting this survey was to discover why Fortune 1000 executives attend certain conferences and events. Most of our panelists, around 68.9%, claimed that these events presented a wealth of networking opportunities – clearly a driving force behind making their decisions. The runner-up reason for attending events was to meet experts and speakers face-to-face, a motivating factor for nearly 31% of our panelists. At least 21.1% of the executives interviewed stated that they saw event attendance as a way to invest in themselves and their professional endeavours.

Motivation for Sponsoring or Exhibiting at an Event

According to 51.3% of our participants, industry reports and knowledge produced at the event form the bulk of their motivation for exhibiting at or sponsoring an event. The next-highest motivator, 39.9%, for our panelists was the quality of attendees. Additionally, 22.6% of our survey participants stated that a speaking slot was motivation enough for attending a conference.

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Why top level executives (Fortune 1000) attend conferences

  1. 1. TOP LEVEL EXECUTIVES ATTENDING CONFERENCES October 2016
  2. 2. www.goodmanlantern.com/events-conferences/ In a comprehensive research we interviewed 191 management executives of Fortune 1000 companies, who regularly attend business conferences and events
  3. 3. WE ASKED EXECUTIVES:
  4. 4. www.goodmanlantern.com/events-conferences/ 1: How do you determine if it's worth you attending a conference or event*? 41.3 62.6 13.1 23.7 22.6 0 18 35 53 70 Asking your peers / colleagues Quality of marketing and communication received Search for relevant conferences on search engines, e.g. Google. Discover events by reports, eBooks etc discovered online Advertising within media including radio or television Answer Resp. A1: Asking your peers / colleagues 41.3% A2: Quality of marketing and communication received 62.6% A4: Search for relevant conferences on search engines, e.g. Google. 13.1% A5: Discover events by reports, eBooks etc discovered online 23.7% A6: Advertising within media including radio or television 22.6% (2) * Respondents were allowed to provide upto 2 answers, hence the cummiltive % is higher than 100
  5. 5. www.goodmanlantern.com/events-conferences/ 2: What are your reservations before selecting to attend an event*? 41.1 22.4 52.6 32.3 0 15 30 45 60 Will the conference help me develop better relationships?Will the conference help you generate quality sales leads?When you're out of the office, who is going to manage your responsibilities?Will the event help you and your team grow professionally? Answer Resp. A1: Will the conference help me develop better relationships? 41.1% A2: Will the conference help you generate quality sales leads? 20.0% A3: When you're out of the office, who is going to manage your responsibilities? 52.6% A4: Will the event help you and your team grow professionally? 32.3% * Respondents were allowed to provide upto 2 answers, hence the cummiltive % is higher than 100
  6. 6. www.goodmanlantern.com/events-conferences/ 3: Why do you attend a conference or event related to your work/business*? 30.7 68.9 11.4 10.8 21.1 0 18 35 53 70 88 Meet experts and speakers face-to-face Networking opportunities with peers Break-Out of your comfort zone New tips and tactics for work Invest in yourself, your career, and your company Answer Resp. A1: Meet experts & speakers face-to- face 30.7% A2: Networking opportunities with peers 68.9% A3: Break-Out of your comfort zone 11.4% A4: New tips & tactics for work 10.8% A5: Invest in yourself, your career, and your company 21.1% * Respondents were allowed to provide upto 2 answers, hence the cummiltive % is higher than 100
  7. 7. www.goodmanlantern.com/events-conferences/ 4: What in the past made your conference or event experience memorable*? 52.2 51.8 34.2 12.7 0 15 30 45 60 Venue: Attending at a venue, which has a ‘wow factor’ Promotional material: in the run up to your event and after Personalisation: at the event like. Eg: a welcome note with a goodie bag Theme: which makes the conference visually exciting and different Answer Resp. A1: Venue: Attending at a venue, which has a ‘wow factor’ 52.2% A2: Promotional material: in the run up to your event and after 51.8% A3: Personalisation: at the event like. Eg: a welcome note with a goodie bag 34.2% A4: Theme: which makes the conference visually exciting and different 12.7% * Respondents were allowed to provide upto 2 answers, hence the cummiltive % is higher than 100
  8. 8. www.goodmanlantern.com/events-conferences/ 5: What channels do you use to learn about the conference or event, before and after*? 30.7 53.5 30.4 42.4 0 15 30 45 60 Social media: Linkedin, Twitter etc Conference’s website and blogs eBook or brochure sent via email Material sent via post (snail mail) Answer Resp. A1: Social media: Linkedin, Twitter etc 30.7% A2: Conference’s website and blogs 53.5% A3: eBook or brochure sent via email 30.4% A4: Material sent via post (snail mail) 42.4% * Respondents were allowed to provide upto 2 answers, hence the cummiltive % is higher than 100
  9. 9. www.goodmanlantern.com/events-conferences/ 6: How long before the conference or event, did you make the choice and pay to attend? 42.1 27.9 21.7 8.3 0 13 25 38 50 1 year+ Between 6months and 1 year Between 1 and 3 months Under 1 month before Answer Resp. A1: 1 year+ 42.1% A2: Between 6months and 1 year 27.9% A3: Between 1 and 3 months 21.7% A4: Under 1 month before 8.3%
  10. 10. DOWNLOAD THE COMPLETE REPORT (free) http://www.goodmanlantern.com/white-papers/

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