Piquing Attendee Interests While Gathering Event Data

Asking the right questions is the key to ensuring your trade show’s participation success, while also letting you gauge public expectations and reactions. By asking attendees the right questions at the right time, you can:

•    Prime your prospects so they know what to expect
•    Gain their trust
•    Get the information needed to generate leads or make sales

Engaging questions can encourage attendees to open up and talk about what they want (perhaps even need) from the trade show. As a rule of thumb, it’s best to avoid closed-ended questions that elicit a “yes or no” answer, because they essentially close the door on any further conversation. 

Focus on the information most relevant to your needs and your efforts to understand your prospects.

Instead, you should ask open-ended questions that lead to more questions or clarification on points. Obviously, there are literally hundreds of questions you can ask prospects, but the important thing to remember is to focus on the information most relevant to your needs and your efforts to understand your prospects. 

For example, if your event’s primary goal is to drive sales, ask questions geared towards gauging the buying intent or consumer goals of your attendees, such as:

Are you looking for anything specific to buy in this trade show?

This question lets you collect information on an attendee’s reasons for visiting your event, which in turn lets you make recommended matches to relevant exhibitors.

How long is your buying cycle?

This qualifying question lets you know what part of the buying cycle your attendees are in, which in turn allows you to give them the appropriate level of attention. 

For example, an attendee simply looking for potential products to buy won’t require the same kind push you would apply to someone who’s in the ‘buying’ stage. 

Do you make purchasing decisions at your company?

This question also makes the event matchmaking process easier as it lets you know who makes purchase decisions and match them with the right exhibitors who can fulfill their needs.

You can also download our Hosted Buyer Events guide to learn how to measure the ROI of your events, conferences, trade shows, and workshops effectively.

Other Questions

What business challenges do you hope to overcome at this event?

Are your attendees hoping to solve certain organizational issues? Perhaps problems with finding talent? A need for potential partners of funding? Your event may be what they need. 

What does a successful event look like to you?

Although it’s impossible to please everybody, what you can do is make sure as many people as possible go home from your event happy after accomplishing something at your event.

What do you hope to see more of, at our event this year?

Help meet attendee expectations by asking them what they want to see well before the event. 

Asking the right qualifying questions is critical to simplifying the lead capture process and engaging your audience. It should also be said that there are no right or wrong questions to ask. It will all depend on your participants, their business, industry, and goals for participating in your event. 

Want tips on what questions you should be asking attendees before your events?
Chat with our event insights squad for free answers!

-Written by Tabitha Naylor