The importance of event marketing comes down to increasing your credibility. Partners and customers have the opportunity to come into direct contact with the brand and find it more trustworthy. This makes events a golden networking opportunity. Hosting or attending events is integral to a healthy lead acquisition strategy. Large business meetings bring together an audience interested in your niche, product, or general new opportunities. There is a good chance that attendees will become leads and loyal customers.
Surprisingly, event marketing also helps increase your brand’s online presence. At least 50% of millennials attend events to share their experiences on social media. For businesses, this means greater reach and brand awareness.
In this article, we have segmented event marketing tips into three categories with some additional tips to explore multi-faceted marketing opportunities in a bigger spectrum.
It’s time to dig into the details.
1. Map out the attendee journey
Another good event marketing strategy is to plan an attendee journey. This means thinking about your event from the customer’s point of view. When and how will the potential attendees interact with your event and, in other words, your brand?
Understanding the touchpoints before, during, and after the event can uncover marketing opportunities you didn’t even know existed.
To start, think of different scenarios where an attendee might come into contact with your brand. Where does their journey begin, and what is the way in? Note the online and offline stages, starting with the pre-registration and marketing phase and continuing through the post-event survey.
2. Add custom bios on your profiles
Put your event front and centre on every page or your social media profile. Create a branded title to advertise the event and boldly display the event name, date, location, and event-specific hashtags.
Link to the event website so potential customers can get more information and create a pinned post as another way to share specific event details. You can even pin an event countdown to the top of each profile page to help build anticipation.
3. Encourage user-generated content
User-generated content reduces the workload on your content creation team. Even better, it allows you to reach more people, organically disseminate your event, and build social proof.
The easiest way to get user-generated content is to create a hashtag on social media and encourage users to use it. Another option for generating buzz is to launch a contest. For example, you could promise free tickets to people whose posts get the most likes or retweets.
4. Curated content from other industry experts
Another way to build authority and use reciprocity power is to share content from other experts and influencers in your industry. Share helpful videos and relevant infographics, or simply comment on an article or piece of content they’ve posted.
This social media promotion strategy is especially effective if influencers or industry experts will engage with your event in some way. Your followers will be more likely to attend your event when they see valuable content from influencers.
5. Use hashtags
As an event organizer, you can use hashtags to brand your event, build awareness of your event, and engage your audience. Twitter reports that brands that use hashtags see a 50% increase in engagement compared to brands that don’t use hashtags.
Hashtags are indispensable when posting content to Twitter and Instagram. Experts recommend using 1-2 hashtags per Twitter post and 9-12 hashtags per Instagram post. On LinkedIn, hashtags are becoming more common, so use them if they make sense for your event.
To be completely effective, don’t just use hashtags on social media platforms. Include them in marketing messages on your ticketing website, emails and digital ads, tickets, and press releases. Apply it to your event day documents, including agendas, name tags, signs, and presentations. If your target audience doesn’t know your hashtag, they won’t use or search for it.
6. Create urgency
The idea of urgency isn’t something new to marketers, but it’s a must because it works! Constant urgency drives consumers to spend more money from flash sales to limited-edition items. The sense of urgency in your communication will trigger your customer’s FOMO, and they’ll be motivated to act before time runs out.
You can use the visuals as an interactive countdown timer or send a series of reminders when you’ve ended a sale or sale. By giving your potential attendees a limited amount of time to act and claim their discount or reward, you trigger their fear of missing out and make them more likely to take action right away.
7. Promote Early Bird Registration
Early registration is a marketing tool where you offer discounts or exclusive packages to people who pre-purchase tickets to your event. When you reward attendees who buy tickets before the discount deadline, you can motivate them to buy tickets earlier. Additionally, early registration can help you anticipate interest in your events and marketing materials. If you’re having difficulty convincing people to buy tickets early, you may need to change your marketing tactics before the event. It’s like a test for your promotional plan.
Video marketing has come a long way, especially in the last few years, with videos having the potential to become viral, spread the message across borders and change the lives of their creators.
Now, while there’s certainly no clear strategy to get your videos going viral, it’s a social media marketing trend worth the investment if you’re looking to start event marketing on social media.
You can also use interactive content like quizzes or polls to ask attendees which artists, booths, or talks they liked best. Designate a team member to respond to questions, issues, or comments people send you. Twitter polls are probably the most elegant voting option to do this on the fly or in real-time. If you plan to create interactive content, you should first think about the questions you want to ask and the content you want to produce. This can significantly increase the quality of the content you stream and help reduce stress levels on busy days when your event is live.
Chatbots are an automated way to serve your guests and potential guests. They can answer questions, provide information, and sell products and services. These are powerful tools to increase your engagement with your guests.
The best part of chatbots is their availability. They can interact with an unlimited number of guests at any time. They don’t rest and can work through any medium – Facebook, your website, SMS and even other apps. They never tire of providing anything less than the level of service you have programmed for them. As you can imagine, this is much more cost-effective than hiring people to manage these kinds of interactions manually.
As the event approaches, you can build excitement – and possibly attract new attendees – by promoting the event online by posting photos on sites like Instagram. Orioles does this exceptionally well by featuring upcoming events and t-shirt giveaways on their Instagram page; this is a short-term example, but there’s no reason you can’t do something similar over the long term to promote an event.
Show what you want to engage your audience! Have you seen the movie trailer? The first trailer launch is the most ambiguous, with subsequent trailers bringing more flavour to what people can expect. So our challenge for you is to pull back the curtain and let your audience participate in the behind-the-scenes action. It could be anything from showing off your products ready to be delivered to showing your team is ready for the event. It will make them feel like they are part of your story, club, and business. This exclusivity often correlates with building a “know, like, and trust” factor for them and increasing your brand buzz.
One of the biggest trends on social media today is to hold fun and engaging Q&A sessions to build anticipation, where interested attendees can get all the answers regarding the upcoming event, from the host directly or through video clips.
Facebook Live, Instagram reels etc. are great ways to follow this trend and are easy to do from any smartphone or device. The most important thing to do is let your users know this session is coming and promote it on all your social media channels, not just on the event ticketing platform where you are hosting the Q&A. This will raise awareness and inspire people who may not be following you across all platforms to access your Facebook profile to find answers to their most burning questions.
Streaming events can also help you sell tickets in the future. By broadcasting live events, you recruit future paying attendees for your event or conference.
Broadcasting your event with Livestream also means you can post simultaneously on your website and social media like Facebook Live. A great event strategy is to simultaneously broadcast your keynote on Facebook (or Twitter or YouTube) and your website. When the session is over, ask your social media viewers to visit your website to watch the rest of the event live. This drives traffic to your event page, where you can control the brand experience around your event live stream.
If you want to create buzz, giveaways are a great way to do it. When it comes to your gift, you are only limited by your creativity. You can give away free subscriptions to your SaaS product, event tickets, behind-the-scenes access, or some kind of event loot. When you run a promotion, collect the email addresses of your participants or ask them to follow your social media. Both strategies build your potential customer base for future promotions and impressions.
Email Marketing Campaign
While it’s okay to email existing subscribers you might have information about the event or try to pressure them to learn more and sign up, you shouldn’t bombard your regular list with event-only information. Promoting events online through a dedicated list will allow you to send more targeted messages about what is happening, when and where.
Just like your website, your email should also have a responsive design. Using responsive design, your emails will automatically fill the screen on any device size and look great on whatever mobile or tablet your subscribers use to read. This means they can read emails without having to scroll left and right, or zoom in and out to see the full text.
Most ESPs offer responsive email templates, but you can always create one with a unique design that perfectly matches your business style.
The more personalized an email is, the less likely it is to end up in the spam box. An easy way to make email more personalized is to send it from one person.
We’ve seen an immediate increase in open rates when placing emails from the owner’s name instead of the business name. As a side benefit, it helps differentiate your business as a small business. Potential attendees appreciate not reaching out to just sales emails and find the emails we send far more valuable than most other retailers. Some email marketing software even allows the sender to include the recipient’s name in the greeting. (It will depend on the availability you are looking for.)
Email marketing remains one of the most powerful channels in your overall marketing strategy. Nearly 66% of event managers say email campaigns are the most effective tool for promoting events.
Remember that a single email is unlikely to lead to excellent results. Advertising through this channel requires creating a stream to drive subscribers through the marketing channel. Consider starting with an invitation email that helps you connect with your existing subscribers and drive event registrations. For some inspiration, follow our guide to creating event invitation emails. Email marketing allows you to nurture leads upon sign-up and increase event attendance. You can get them to predict the event without wasting time and money.
An essential part of any marketing initiative is the customer journey or experience. Newsletters can be a great tool to keep your customers informed about what’s going on at your business. This opens the door to a better understanding of your brand and the specific products and services you offer. Advertising is not enough to reach potential customers because they have a limited view of your product.
Email newsletters can be one of the best sources to announce and promote a new product or service within your brand. Include creative visual messages and relevant information about special offers in your promotional campaigns. Attractive offers along with a powerful call-to-action will capture readers’ interests and jump into the content to read the maximum amount of information.
Keep a close eye on your data, such as the number of undelivered email addresses, how many were never opened, and the time of day people opened your messages. Small data details can tell you a lot about your campaign’s performance.
If you use Google Analytics for your website, you will have more powerful data at your fingertips. You can even consider tagging your emails with custom campaign tracking to see how they drive traffic to your landing pages and how those perform once they get there. With this information, you can personalize your messages for your targeted attendees.
22. Try A/B testing
So far, we’ve suggested marketers take a deductive approach, testing new strategies by observing relative improvements in open and click rates. However, there is another way to improve, which is to pair the two methods together.
With A/B testing, you can experiment with two variables, such as two subject lines, to find out which performs better. A/B testing can vary in complexity, and simple A/B testing can include sending multiple subject lines to test which gets opened the most, while A/B testing lifts. Higher levels may consist of testing completely different email templates to see which ones. generate more clicks. We recommend testing only one part of an email (for example, a subject line or an image) at a time so there aren’t too many variables. This will ensure more accurate results.
Dynamic email content is another way to personalize your marketing. With this strategy, your email content will automatically change to match based on reader criteria such as gender, geographic location, shopping habits, or behaviour on your website.
Target groups will receive the same template but see different images, infographics, offers, discounts, and calls to action. Another instance of dynamic content is including a countdown timer in your email or a live feed from your blog or social media.
PPC ads work on keywords. When users perform a search, they use keywords to create a list of related results. If you want your ad to appear in front of relevant potential attendees, you need to choose the right keywords for the ad.
To find related keywords, do keyword research. Keyword research will help you create a list of relevant keywords for your PPC ads. Many keyword research tools will help you find appropriate keywords for your PPC ads. Finding and implementing the right keywords will help you attract valuable quality leads for your PPC event ads.
25. Use relevant keywords in your posts.
Ranking for specific keywords is not limited to your blog limits. Using carefully selected keywords in social media posts increases your brand’s visibility to interested parties and the organic reach of your posts. Quality keywords can generate the right kind of new visitors, helping to improve brand awareness and increase event ticket sales.
26. Add meta description
People often decide whether or not to open a website by looking at the title’s meta description. This little piece of content also helps Google appreciate your site so that it can become a winning part of your SEO campaign.
Keep meta descriptions informative and brief (less than 150 characters), so your potential viewers know what they’ll see after visiting your site. Otherwise, Google will insert a random piece of text from your page instead of the meta description and may confuse the reader.
One thing that makes SEO practices today different from the past is focusing on quality content first. Relevant, unique and engaging information makes your website trustworthy to search engines. When it comes to content about your event, it’s more important to include relevant topics than promoting the live event. In this case, you can link to your event page while filling out your blog with relevant information.
For more organic advertising, tell your audience about the importance or history of the event if you host it regularly. Relevancy can be demonstrated through its contribution to the life or career of your affiliate or participants.
Alt-text is the text you enter to describe the visual elements on your event website. Screen readers use them to read descriptions of images to the visually impaired. Alt text also contributes to event marketing in another way. Bots that crawl your site also can’t understand images, so they’ll use alt text to see if your site is relevant. Using alt text can definitely benefit your site’s search ranking.
29. Leverage the powerful event ticketing platform
Chances are, the event management software or event ticketing platform you are using already has a strong SEO advantage. They should have done their research to ensure maximum search visibility. You will be asked to add keywords or tags when you list your event on their platform. Once you’ve added the necessary keywords, your event will automatically rank for those keywords, making it easy for potential attendees to find you.
One of the great advantages of an online event ticketing system is that it can reach a large number of people. By using online ticketing software, you will increase your ticket sales by attracting more people. Social media is a powerful marketing tool. Integrating it with your ticketing system allows your customers to share their purchased tickets to their accounts, promoting the event without much effort.
Landing pages are an integral part of event marketing. With a dedicated online ticketing platform, create a stunning event landing page with some core components like crucial details of the event, guests/speakers, call-to-action, social proof and direct social media sharing. What event are you promoting? Don’t forget to include a prominent headline that clearly sums up what the event is about.
CTAs (Call-to-Action) don’t always have to have bright red buttons above the chart. If you’re looking for visitors to your event landing page, adding a hyperlink to the phrase “Click here to learn more” in your caption will be enough to provide accurate leads on what they need to get closer to the final payment. Not only does this give your audience a chance to complete your well-deserved action, but it also keeps them away from social media and deeper into the funnel to where you want them to be as paid attendees.
There are many goals you can set with a PPC campaign. The most common goal is to achieve a certain number of conversions or conversion rates. Because PPC ads attract leads more likely to convert, many businesses aim to drive conversions.
Another common campaign goal is getting a certain number of impressions. With PPC, you don’t pay for impressions; you pay for clicks. Many businesses will take advantage of this opportunity to make an impression and build brand recognition.
Event schema markup is a type of plugin that helps search engines better understand your events. Essentially, instead of just presenting information on a web page, you add context to it to ensure search engines understand it correctly. The event scheme not only helps crawlers properly index your site but also helps them provide more relevant, contextual event-related information on the search results page so that more people are likely to visit your site. Another advantage of the event scheme is that it supports voice search. You can use the Google Structured Data Markup Helper to embed event schema markup to your website.
The most powerful driving force behind social proof is the bandwagon effect, a social psychology concept that visitors are more likely to engage in action if someone else does. As one of the best event marketing ideas, social proof makes something more desirable by showing how much others have invested in it or how they feel about it.
Having positive social proof of your event brand makes potential attendees feel more confident associating with your event. They are more likely to follow the crowd that bought from you. Social proof can be crucial in executing your product and service landing page strategy.
Local citations help visitors discover your event locally and can also impact local search engine rankings. Specifically, having high-quality base citations can help you rank correctly on Google’s local search interfaces.
Whether you’re hosting an event at your workplace or not, event listings are an easy way to grab your name/address/phone number to get locally searchable citations. Since many of you will be using these strategies for a local business, this is value added (citation count is an important local SEO ranking factor).
Once you’ve chosen your PPC campaign keywords for event marketing, you need to create relevant ad copy to go with it. It is essential that your ad content is relevant to your keywords to keep your audience engaged with your event ad.
For instance, suppose you’re trying to rank for “corporate event planner”. When visitors find your PPC ad for a corporate events company, they’ll see information about various corporate events you can host. Your target audience doesn’t want to see information about wedding plans or other events. If your provided information is irrelevant to your keywords, your audience will not stay on your landing page. In this case, if you’re trying to categorize yourself as a “corporate event planner,” your landing page should specifically focus on corporate event planning. This will keep potential customers engaged with your ad.
The positive effects of business collaboration are becoming more and more known, and this kind of success can also translate to event management. Networking can help improve your event performance, organization and volunteer productivity and create new business.
Event promoters who are members of multiple networks and enrolling attendees as affiliates who are also members of multiple networks are more likely to maximize attendance and improve the success of an event.
Whatever the purpose of your event, a referral and relationship-oriented event will attract more qualified attendees who are more likely to be interested in the products and services offered at the event and contribute to a rewarding experience for all attendees. The effectiveness of collaboration can be extremely explosive when it comes to promoting and experiencing your event.
Publicizing your event is a surefire way to get more people to your event. But random ads won’t help. It would help if you reached a specific audience to find potential event attendees. Ideally, your event sponsors are from the same industry as your event. When done right, sponsorship creates a win-win situation that focuses on creating value for sponsors and organizers and creating a relationship that everyone can enjoy. Everyone can benefit, including the audience. This model works with a fourth win, representing one of the primary goals of every event – giving back to the community.
Affiliate programs are traditionally associated with e-commerce sites, but why not create an affiliate program with your event registration page? You can offer your new subscribers a flat percentage or discount on the event registration fee. You can use affiliate programs with different marketing strategies combined to maximize time and resources and increase profits. These strategies include email, social media, SEO, PPC, and more.
40. Try remarketing
Remarketing allows event marketers to reconnect and stay up to date in attendees’ minds. The principles of remarketing are quite simple. Marketers hire an advertising agency online (or through Google) and place a specific tag on their website. People who view this page will find targeted ads that seem to follow them to other websites.
With remarketing, the critical step of your website visitors can become a series of touchpoints on compelling platforms like Google, YouTube, and Facebook and lead to conversions.
Remarketing can be highly effective for event marketing but can also be very dangerous. There’s no doubt that remarketing is incredibly powerful. Still, with data privacy concerns sparked by recent scandals, it’s more important than ever to use these tools wisely and skillfully. After all, we gain nothing by eroding our event’s brand equity.
Events are an excellent opportunity to build customer loyalty. People visit conferences or seminars not only to network and absorb new knowledge but also to break out of their routine and have a good time. Such positive experiences create a strong emotional connection with a brand. So event organizing can be a good relationship marketing strategy.
Obviously, the event marketing strategies and ideas we have shared above are not the only strategies and ideas available. These are some of the most effective that you can use as the basis of your overall strategy. By using a robust event ticketing system and implementing these strategies, you’ll be in a much stronger position to create buzz, attract more people, and ultimately get more ticket sales and the registration of your target attendees.