When your marketing team brainstorms to choose tactics for promoting your business, don't forget event marketing—it's the best way to achieve your goals. Don't take our word for it—a Content Marketing Institute study found that for the sixth consecutive year, marketers ranked in-person events as the most effective way to achieve brand awareness, sales, lead generation, lead nurturing and engagement.
Here's why: As our world becomes more and more impersonal—text messages instead of coffee shop chats; e-mails instead of long talks over dinner—when a prospective customer talks with you face-to-face, it's a personal experience that creates greater impact than reading an ad or watching a TV commercial. The customer doesn't just receive yet another generic marketing message, they get to know the smart, engaging people behind the brand.
If you're thinking that event marketing might be right for your product, service, cause or company, you might also be wondering how to go about it. Here are some guidelines that will help you stay on track:
Establish Clear, Defined Goals
Before you start planning the details of your event, you need to establish goals. Do you want to create brand awareness? Increase sales? Maybe you'd like to develop deeper customer involvement, gather sales leads or just build your prospect database. Clearly defined goals serve as a guiding light for your team throughout the entire project.
Who Is Your Audience?
Knowing whom you want to inform about your event helps to determine your marketing tactics. For example, if your target audience is tech-savvy millennials, your plans for getting the word out should include heavy doses of social media such as posts on Facebook, Twitter and your company's blog. For other prospective attendees, a more traditional approach with press releases, advertising and direct mail will do the trick.
Consider Online Events
To most people, event marketing means in-person events, but online events can connect presenters and participants through a web-based interface. Common online events are webinars, virtual discussions and live streaming events. Online events can be less costly and enable you to easily reach a geographically dispersed audience.
Event marketing experts can take your ideas and plans and transform them into a productive, memorable event. These consultants do a lot more than "throw a party"— they can provide tips on marketing strategy and help you budget, book a venue, coordinate vendors and invite guests. Chances are, event marketing specialists in your local area bring a long list of professional contacts with them.
It's Not Over When It's Over
Congratulations, your event is over and it was a smashing success. Your staff connected with tons of people and explained how your company can solve their problems. You reeled in a bunch of promising sales leads and built your brand. Mission accomplished, right? Wait, not so fast! What you do after an event is just as important as what you did before it. Reach out and follow up with attendees—by phone, e-mail or direct mail—preferably within 3-4 days of your event. This will nurture relationships and help keep you top of mind with prospective customers.
Need more guidance when it comes to event marketing? Our experts at Tipton Communications are here to help you. We offer everything from consulting to a full hands-on approach. Visit our website http://tiptoncommunications.com or call us at 302.454.7901.