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March 6, 2024

Everything You Need to Know About Event CRMs

In a previous post, I asked would you rather manage venue bookings or nurture customer relationships? Today I want to dig deeper and explore what an event CRM is, the benefits it can bring to venues and what to look for when purchasing an event CRM.

It’s no secret that CRMs are widely beneficial. As reported by WebFX, companies that use CRM systems have seen a 17% increase in lead conversions, a 16% boost in customer retention and a 21% improvement in agent productivity.  

Standard customer relationship management (CRM) software is used across all industries to organize client information and help businesses provide better service to their prospective and existing customers. A CRM’s goal is to replace disparate systems and help users gain critical insights into customer details so they can make informed decisions to enhance customer satisfaction and drive business growth.

You might wonder if a standard CRM is suitable for venue and event management. With all the venue and event management challenges professionals face in today’s world, I believe purpose-built event CRMs are critical to streamlining event operations and delivering exceptional customer service experiences. Keep reading to allow me to explain.

What Is an Event CRM?

Unlike standard CRMs, event CRMs are purpose-built platforms designed to manage and maintain relationships between venues and event organizers and key event stakeholders (i.e., attendees, event sponsors, event exhibitors, etc.). The key features of event CRM technologies include:

  • Contact and lead management  
  • Event opportunities and bookings 
  • Live calendar and venue availability chart
  • Sales management and analytics
  • Activity and communication logs (i.e., sales tasks, emails, phone calls, SMS, etc.)
  • Dashboards and reporting
  • Task and workflow management
  • Automation
  • Document and contract management
  • Quotes and invoices
  • Integrations and more

In short, an event CRM gives venues and event organizers the tools that they need to build lasting relationships with all event stakeholders while boosting efficiency and maximizing event outcomes.

Why Do Venues Need Event CRMs?

Venues that rely on manual tools like spreadsheets and shared folders put themselves in a vulnerable position. These outdated systems limit productivity, increase the risk of human error and, ultimately, limit the level of service venues and event organizers can offer their customers which can lead to poor event experiences.

However, it is not enough for venues to purchase any CRM. Venues need purpose-built event CRMs that have been designed to suit their specific business needs. Here are the top five reasons venues need dedicated event CRMs:

Nurture Lasting Client Relationships

With complete visibility into client contact information, past booking details and more, venues and event organizers have all the information they need to provide better service to their clients which helps them nurture lasting relationships and encourage repeat bookings.

Deliver Better Event Experiences

Centralized event information makes it easier for venues and event teams to access up-to-date information about their current and upcoming bookings, which ensures all staff and suppliers are on the same page and nothing is missed in the lead-up to an event.

Increase Efficiency and Drive Business Growth

Venues must embrace modern event CRM systems to replace outdated manual processes and nurture enduring client relationships. Event CRMs automate and streamline operations, enhancing customer experiences throughout the event lifecycle while simultaneously increasing profitability by reducing costs and boosting efficiencies.

What to Look for When Purchasing an Event CRM

When shopping for an event CRM, you must consider what functionality you need to help you achieve your organizational goals and support your event management processes. Here's a comprehensive list of things venues and event organizers may want to look for when buying an event CRM:

1. Features and Functionality

Ensure the event CRM has the basic features and functionality you need to support your business now and in the venue. A great place to start is drafting a functionality checklist that you can use when reviewing potential solutions.

2. Potential for Customization

If needed, check if your chosen software allows you to customize the system to suit your unique event processes, branding or other business requirements.

3. API and Integration Capabilities

While your event CRM should act as the single source of truth for all your event data, it is important to consider how this will interact with all the other applications across your business like accounting packages, human resources management tools, marketing systems and more. Verify your chosen provider offers a robust API to allow you to seamlessly integrate your event CRM within your technology ecosystem.

4. Ease of Use and User Interface

No matter how many features an event CRM offers, if it’s not easy to pick up and use, it’s likely that your team will resist using it. Be sure to test your chosen platform to ensure the design is intuitive and user-friendly to encourage buy-in from your team.

5. Accessibility

Accessibility is a broad topic, but ultimately you will need to explore what the limitations are when it comes to your users accessing the system. Here are some things to consider:

  • Is it cloud-based or can you only access the system onsite?
  • Is it responsive on mobile devices?
  • Is it WCAG 2 compliant?

6. Scalability

When trying to find the right venue and event management solution for your organization, consider how this will support your business now and in the future. Ensure your chosen event CRM can scale with your organization's growth and handle the increasing volume and complexity of events without compromising performance.

In addition to functionality, other things you should consider when choosing the right event CRM for your business include:

  • Customer support and training
  • Data security and compliance
  • Cost and pricing structure  
  • Client references and reviews
  • Product roadmap
  • Performance and reliability
  • Community and user base

Deliver Exceptional Customer Service with a Purpose-built Event CRM for Venues

Venues can no longer afford to rely on outdated manual processes to nurture lasting client relationships. Instead, they need robust event CRMs to help them automate and streamline their processes to allow them to deliver better service to their customers before, during and after events. Venue management software with a fully-integrated event CRM can enable you to drive sales efficiency and truly nurture client relationships.

Ready to enhance your customer relationships and streamline your event operations?  

Contact us today to discover how our industry-leading event CRM can help transform your business. 



Brad Nuccio

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