Success stories

ADN – Advanced Digital Network Distribution From On-site to Online – Promoting Events Effectively with XING Events

Stefan Sutor

Initial Situation: Special Industry and Top Target Group

The Company

ADN has specialised in distributing complex and consulting-intensive technologies, products, and solutions. Within a few years, ADN managed to achieve a leading position among value added distributors in the German-speaking countries. Founded in 1994, the company currently employs a staff of about 200 people.

The value-added reseller’s more than 6,000 customers include global system houses and systems integrators as well as cloud and managed service providers, software houses, and value-added resellers. To provide their (potential) customers and partners with comprehensive insights into their products, ADN regularly offers on-site and online events through their own academy.

The Events

The B2B business area in particular often comprises solutions that are complex and thus require a lot of explanation. Here, seminars and trainings have proven to be a popular and useful tool to impart knowledge to customers and partners – a fact that ADN has also recognised. Therefore, the company started their own academy in 1997. Their events are focused on consulting, opportunities for further training, and generating new customers, both online and offline. In addition to free trainings, ADN also offers paid certifications that are part of system houses’ requirements for selling complex products.

All summed up, their event offerings amount to 350 webinars and 650 online events as well as on-site trainings per year.

The Requirements

One particular challenge for ADN was addressing the specific target group of IT professionals and generating the right attendees for online and offline events and trainings. Furthermore, ADN’s goal was to target new customers and thus to generate further registrations. They needed comprehensive and precise targeting options to address this group without wasting advertising resources and to boost awareness of ADN’s events among this particular group. The most important requirements for ADN thus included a clear representation of the available advertising and social selling options as well as easy-to-use tools.

XING Events is a prime example for how to do things right when it comes to social selling. You will not find this type of social selling on any other platform. The possibility to contact and invite individuals directly offers a huge potential. We were very happy with the results that we have achieved.

Stefan Sutor, Online Marketing Lead, ADN

Solution: Promoting On-site and Online Events on XING

Targeted Ads and Customised Optimisation Options

To promote their events within the right target group, ADN uses the XING AdManager. With its around 18 million members, the business network XING is the right choice for ADN’s goals, especially for B2B business purposes. As users keep their profiles up-to-date, ADN is able to benefit from a high level of data quality. Selection criteria like age, location, employer, career level, and industry help to specify the target group for the individual event ads as desired. The “Job Titles and Skills” filter in particular helps ADN to include their desired ad recipients directly into the target group via keywords like ‘Microsoft Dynamics’. This helps to avoid wasting advertising resources. The ads on XING are directly displayed as native ads on the user’s news feed or as news in the XING app.

ADN is able to customise everything from payment options to daily and maximum budget as well as duration in the AdManager. Furthermore, the CPC (cost per click) is exactly indicated and the budget that they have already spent is shown in an overview, so ADN measures their achieved success over the course of the campaign. This way, they are able to adjust and optimise their campaigns according to their particular needs – whether regarding their maximum bid or their duration.

By testing similar campaigns, ADN is able to quickly see which campaigns already worked well and which ones needed optimisation. This way, they gain valuable insights: If an ADN event takes place in several cities, it proved to save up to 50 percent of the CPC (cost per click) for promoting on XING if, instead of having one main event, the event was split into several single events.

To manage their ads, ADN uses the XING Events Agency which allows teams to manage budgets and campaigns together.

XING Events Tip: For detailed information on how ADN realises and promotes their online events, see the webinar On-site goes online – Virtuelle Events und Schulungen im Praxis-Check-up (On-site Goes Online – A Closer Look at Virtual Events and Trainings).

Native ad for the ADN online event “Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop Online Day”, filter functions and their reach
Native ad for the ADN online event “Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop Online Day”, filter functions and their reach

Event Plus Offers Special Re-targeting Options

XING Events offers ADN the possibility to invite attendees of past events, members of groups, and the user’s own contacts to an event using personalised messages. All ADN needs for this is an Event Plus page. The company is also able to see who visited their event page as well as when and how often they visited, including information on whether event page visitors were redirected via ads. In addition, ADN receives up-to-date statistics showing the visibility of their event and the activities on their event page.

With event updates on their XING home page, ADN is able to re-target their page visitors. After this, they are sending out personalised invitations. Users receive this message not only in their XING mailbox but also as an email. In the end, being able to re-target users in particular helped ADN to generate many registrations.

Organisers can send a maximum of five messages, including reminders, upcoming event highlights, or recommendations, to XING users who directly accepted an event invitation or responded with Maybe. Especially for events lasting several days, ADN was able to increase engagement among users by sending them these types of messages.

Using personalised messages, ADN furthermore was able to target event visitors and guests for their nurturing activities as event page visitors were displayed to the admin of the company profile and the event’s co-organisers even after the event. ADN leverages this general interest in the event regularly and is able to generate additional new leads during the nurturing phase after the event has taken place.

Result: Increase in the Number of Participants and Ticket Sales

Addressing a specific target group with as little CPC as possible was one of the challenges for ADN. By teaming up with XING Events and using the three-tiered promotion method, ADN now follows the three pillars for a successful event: event promotion, lead generation, and nurturing of event attendees.  XING Events’ solutions now are an intrinsic part of ADN’s marketing mix when it comes to attendee and lead generation as well as ticket sales. Moreover, by promoting their events on XING, they continue to successfully generate new customers.

Xing Events Tip: Use the XING Events products with which ADN successfully markets its on-site and online events!

Five points of contact in three steps - this is our concept for success for your attendee recruitment. With custom-fit advertisements, event updates and personal invitations, you can draw the attention of interested parties to your event again and again.

Stefan Sutor Online Marketing Lead, ADN

Stefan Sutor is head of online marketing at ADN Distribution GmbH (ADN) and thus responsible for the social media marketing team. As an expert in digital marketing, he knows exactly how to reach the right target group beyond your own database without spending huge amounts of money on classic advertising. This requires new approaches in a clever marketing mix.

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