You’ve been given the role of event manager for your company or charity’s upcoming event. Perhaps you’ve already sorted out event production and hired any entertainment you need for the event, but there’s something that’s just as important: event marketing. In all likelihood, your event will need to be promoted to ensure that you guarantee a decent turn-up on the day. Even if your event is a corporate, invite only affair, a sound event marketing strategy can still build up buzz and lead to a publicity boost for your company – and your event management skills! So, how do you put together a sound event marketing strategy?
Know your audience
As always in marketing, you can’t hope to get anywhere if you don’t have a focused target market in mind. Who attended last year? Hopefully you have some data from the research that was conducted during last year’s event. If not, you’ll probably still have some idea about the demographics of your target audience. From here, you can focus your marketing at this specific demographic. Now you’re able to start making decisions about whether to focus on print marketing, social media marketing, or other forms of digital marketing. What about your logo and other printed materials? All of this should reflect both the nature of the event and the audience you want to appeal to.
Know your resources
The next step is to think about the resources you have available to you. Budget is obviously important, but we’re also talking about time and staff. How much time do you have before the event begins? How much time can you afford to spend on marketing? Working out the number of staff in your marketing team is crucial. If you’re running a small event, you might only have one person dedicated to marketing – or the event manager themselves might be tasked with it. However, for a larger event it’s helpful to have a larger marketing team. Make it clear who’s responsible for which area of marketing and the portion of the budget they have available to them.
Know your targets
What specific aims do you have? These can be related to the event itself, or the outcomes of the event. You might want to think about targets for event attendance, event revenue, attendee satisfaction and donations made. Other measures of success include post-event social media follower numbers, mailing list additions or an increase in revenue or subscribers. Knowing your aims is another key component of a well-targeted event marketing strategy.
Differences between standard marketing and event marketing
Now that you have your target audience, resources and goals in mind, you might be tempted to launch straight into your usual marketing routine. However, event marketing differs from standard marketing in a number of ways. First, instead of carrying out an ongoing marketing campaign, you’ll be concentrating your marketing efforts over a very short period of time. Your marketing should ramp up significantly in the days leading up to the event, and will fall away almost completely after the event. That means you’ll need to have a flexible marketing strategy that can change tack over time. Second, you’re not selling a product with a long-term use – you’re selling an experience. You’re buying the privilege of people’s time, so you have to persuade them that it won’t be a waste.
We hope that this guide has given you a clear starting point for your event marketing strategy. The questions that we’ve asked in this article need to be answered as thoroughly as you’re able to if you want your event marketing strategy to be effective.
If you’d like a hand with any other aspect of event production or management, contact R&B Group now.