Having consistent events for your business is a great marketing strategy. Events are a great way for people to get to know you, like you, and trust you, which we all know is the key to getting more business. However, putting on events is not always an easy task. The hardest thing about events is getting people to attend, so this article goes through the 3 steps to successfully market your next event.
Step 1- Pre-Event
Pre-event is the planning phase which involves all the activities that go into planning an event up until the day that the event occurs. The planning phase should include the following key elements:
- Audience– who is the event intended for? Just like all marketing strategies, the first step is to understand who you are trying to reach which includes the usual demographics and the even more important psychographics of your audience. The demographics covers the age, gender, income level, etc. while the psychographics is going to cover lifestyle, beliefs, attitudes, etc.
- Purpose– What is the goal of the event? Is the event mainly to get your name and brand out there so you can create brand awareness, is it to get sales, is it to grow your prospect list, is it to show appreciate to your customers, is it to educate the market on your industry, etc. There are so many reasons to have an event, and it is important that you are clear on the specific reason you are having the event.
- Promotion– How are you going to get the word out about your event? Are you going to use traditional advertising channels like radio, TV, newspaper, etc., or are you going to use new media like social media, blogs, email, etc., or a combination of both forms of media? List all the ways you are going to promote the event and how often you are going promote it up until the day of the event.
- Budget– It is important to establish a budget for the event. How much are you willing to spend on the promotion of the event and the actual event itself? No matter how big or small of an event you are planning, it is important for you to set an overall budget for the event.
Step 2- During the Event
The marketing of the event does not end while the event is taking place, in fact, some of the best promotion can be done at the event. Some ways that you can promote during the event include:
- Live Stream– This has become popular for larger events. With the technology available to be able to broadcast the event around the world, many people are offering free or paid live streams for people to be able to have access to the event virtually. This helps to amplify your event goal, because not only will you be reaching the people who attend your event in person, but you can also reach people anywhere in the world. It goes back to the purpose of your event. If a live stream will help you reach your overall goal and it is in your event budget, then it may be something to consider.
- Social Media– Social Media and Social Networks like Twitter and Instagram are great to promote not only before the event, but also during the event because it is a way for people who are at the event to connect, and also people who are not at the event to get some of the information presented, and to see some of the activity. The best way to be effective on social networks is to create a specific hashtag (#) that can be used throughout the event. This allows for easy grouping and visibility on the network when it comes to conversations and pictures about the event. Again it is another way to amplify the event to other people who may not be in attendance.
Step 3- Post-Event
The marketing of the event does not end after the event. Depending on how often you will be having the event or having other events for your business, the end of the event is a great way to market the next event.
- Sign-ups– Be sure to promote the next event, and whenever possible even encourage individuals to sign-up for the next event on the spot. That helps you to secure your audience for your next event.
- Feedback– Getting feedback after an event is not only great research on how you can improve your next event, but it also shows your attendees that you care about the events and their feedback is valuable. Event surveys are a great way to get this type of feedback and the information that you receive from the attendees can help you with the creation and promotion of the next event
- Appreciation– Showing your attendees that you appreciated their attendance is also a great post-event activity. This could be in the form of an email or a thank you card. Depending on the size and scope of your event, you would need to decide what is the most appropriate way for you to show your attendees appreciation.
Do you have consistent events to promote your business? If so, what do you include in your pre-event, during event, and post event planning?