You’re, sort of, misunderstanding the point.
As we all sort of do until the years go by, we get a lot bigger, and then we see it.
Probably 70% of the point of their investment at Dreamforce — which was much more than $2m, all-in — is to meet with (x) existing customers, i.e. customer success and (y) existing prospects.
NOT to get new leads.
And of course, it’s an important time to be present with Salesforce itself.
If Apptus is at $100m ARR (maybe more, but let’s KISS) and wants to grow say 70% next year to $170m … there’s probably a $30-$40m marketing budget to play with.
Investing 10% of that in any event where every single one of their customers is already attending, many of their prospects already in the pipeline (all those “VIP” meetings with the sales team) … and heck, even a few new leaders … seems about right to me.
And when your product can sell for more that a million dollars a year … even giving away one Ferrari or a Tesla or two to a prospect can be ROI positive.
Think about Salesforce itself. Is it doing Dreamforce for new leads? The bigger you get, the less it’s about leads. And more about meeting your prospects, and the existing base.