So you want to know how to promote an event successfully? It’s a big job! However, it can be very rewarding if you know what to do. Indeed, for every event promotion project, there are some things that you’re going to need to do. These are the steps you need to follow if you want to promote events successfully.
#1. Be Aware of The Budget, and Be Ready To Work Within It
Budgeting should be one of the first things you discuss with any client when it comes to event promotion. Events cost money. And if you’re going to get anywhere close to starting a conversation, you will need the event promotion budget. It should be something that is discussed in the first meeting you have with your client. You need to know how much money your client is willing to spend on event promotion.
You know event planning - that’s why you’re in the event promoting business. So you should be able to give them ballpark estimates right from the get-go about how much something is going to cost. You don’t have to be exact in that first talk, but you should know about how much they’re willing to spend to promote their events. That will inform all of your decisions moving forward.
#2. Understand Your Audience
Knowing the targeted audience for the events you’re promoting is an essential question in deciding how to promote to them. What are their interests? Where do they hang out (in real life and online)? How old are they? How educated are they? All of this demographic information is essential if you’re going to figure out how to plan an event promotion.
For example, if you’re targeting male weightlifters, you probably won’t want to advertise on Pinterest, where 90% of the audience is female. Similarly, if you’re targeting retirees looking for investment advice, they’re not going to be trolling Reddit. Every customer has many different right ways to reach them. This retiree could be reached through Facebook, through email newsletters, through television advertising. You need to know who you’re selling to and where your audience hangs out.
#3. Use Targeted Messaging
When we’re talking about targeting here, we’re not talking about the target audience’s habits anymore: we’re talking about creating a message that is laser-focused to appeal to the audience.
Create a simple, straightforward message. Something that’s easy to remember. Something that grabs attention. This doesn’t have to be a slogan or even wording that you say to your audience, but you must understand it.
Such messaging is “Come to the greatest folk rock concert to hit this city in years” or “Make money with real estate investing with the tricks learned at this seminar” or “Join with like-minded people in a festival celebrating our cause.” Boil the message down to its fundamentals, and then use that message to create all of your marketing collateral.
#4. Get Online
Nowadays, everyone is online, from 14 year olds on their first smartphones to 80 year olds looking at their grandkids on Facebook. By knowing your target audience, and knowing the message you want to send, you will be able to craft an online message that will hit your goals. It will serve your audience because you’ll know where to find them--trust us, social media platforms know EXACTLY how to target people if you want to run ads with them--and it will serve your message because you know exactly what you need to say.
Online isn’t everything! Print is still powerful, if it’s in the right place. You may throw away most of your mail. However, be assured that direct mail companies wouldn’t be spamming your mailbox with those endless letters unless they were turning a profit. And while newspapers and magazines may be shrinking, they’re not gone. In fact, they are still very much a thing for event promotion. When you’re in the event promoting business, don’t forget the real world.
#6. Make It Meaningful
People aren’t searching for ways to burn their money--they’re searching for experiences, messages, learnings, and life changes. You’re an event planner, you’re not a grocery store. No one is going to come to your event because they “need” to in the same way they need peanut butter and need toilet paper.
People are going to come to your event because they want something that will change them, if even for a moment. They are coming to learn how to be better, to experience a little fun, to grow their wealth, to celebrate with friends. There are many reasons that people come to events and 99 times out of 100 it’s not because they feel obligated to. If you know the reason why people would come to you event, you can use that to promote it more effectively.
When you want to promote an event successfully you’re going to need to follow all of the steps that we’ve outlined above, and you’re also going to need the tools to bring it all together. Timely is an event management software that can help you with many of your event planning needs.
Contact us to learn more about Timely, or try for free!