Event management involves a highly detailed process, from developing your event objectives, gathering a team, establishing a budget, and creating an event master plan. You have to go through several procedures before getting people to show up.
If you’re reading this, chances are that you already moved past the event planning. Now it’s time to get more technical. How can you encourage participation?
Like event planning, event promotion also involves an intensive process. But fear not, this guide provides easy-to-follow steps to make a compelling marketing strategy. Follow these eight steps to get started!
Step 1: Establish Your Marketing Objectives
Your event marketing plan greatly depends on your marketing objectives. Every move you make should align with your event goals. It will be easier to create a marketing plan if you have a solid marketing objective.
Start by asking yourself questions. What is your target number of attendees? Does the event aim to strengthen relationships with clients or business partners?
To ensure that everyone is on the same page, involve the entire team as you identify your marketing objectives. You have to make sure everyone shares the same goal.
Step 2: Prepare a Content Management Plan
Now that you have your marketing goals in mind, it’s time to work on the marketing content. As you create a content management plan, emphasize the event’s key messages, such as learning opportunities, keynote speeches, and previous event footage.
Managing the event website plays a big role in your content. As the event approaches, you need to stay hands-on. These include managing the event app, online registration, and event schedule.
Step 3: Identify Your Event Speakers and Participants
The key persons in your event involve you (the organizer), the speakers, emcees, exhibitors, sponsors, and participants. Once you have identified each of them, brief them about the primary goal of your event. The key persons can also help you in the promotion.
Find an event emcee who is excellent at building connections with the crowd. You can find professional event emcees online who can help you engage participants during the event.
Step 4: Step up Your Promotion
Defining your attendee demographics will help you identify your target market. These include age, gender, location, profession, and income. To collect data, you can analyze the event website traffic and audience data from previous events.
You can save time and effort if you use event listing websites to promote your event.
Step 5: Set Communication Tactics
The main goal of your marketing plan is to engage as many audiences as possible. To make this possible, set your communication tactics. Using communication tactics means making sure that event information will reach your audiences. Email and push notifications are tried-and-tested tools to keep your attendees updated.
Step 6: Personalize Your Message
Sending event information to your audience is not enough to communicate your message. Make it personalized to spark their interests. If you’re sending virtual invitations to your previous attendees, add pictures and videos from previous events to keep them engaged.
For new attendees, send invitations that highlight the best parts of your event, such as the speakers, learning opportunities, and ticket discounts.
You can also try an event management software to help you create tailored fit messages to your target audiences.
Step 7: Establish Last-minute Engagement Tactics
As the event date approaches, it’s time to put your marketing strategy on full throttle. Create a buzz and drive word-of-mouth marketing among attendees. You can do this by setting up an online community.
A community board is a great place to start. Think of activities that will encourage attendees to interact. Create custom discussion topics, Q&A with speakers and organizers, photo contests, online raffles, and the list goes on.
Step 8: Evaluate the Event Performance
Now that you’re done with your marketing efforts, don’t relax just yet. It’s time to evaluate the event’s performance.
Conducting an event performance evaluation will help you identify the weaknesses and strengths of your marketing plan. Once you know the exact metrics, collect all event data. These include the engagement rate of your social media postings, website traffic, networking activities, number of attendees, audience feedback, and critique of the event speakers.
Use the collected data to write a report. Discuss the report with your team and stakeholders. You can also include the report for the newsletter and future PR activities. Your performance evaluation will serve as your guide on the next event you will organize.
Planning an event is one thing, but creating an event marketing plan is a whole different quest. A successful event largely depends on a well-organized marketing plan. The next time you put together a marketing plan, keep in mind your event objectives to make your marketing efforts flawless.