Let’s face it, 2020 has been quite uneventful—in the most literal way. Our current situation poses a major marketing challenge in that many organizations rely on events to drive revenue, generate new leads, boost membership, market new products and services…the list goes on.
If you’re faced with trying to manage an event during these unusual times, be confident that it can still be done; you just need to get creative with your approach. Here are a few tips for successfully managing events now, through the end of the year, and likely beyond:
Be flexible. Many organizations have already shifted their conferences and meetings to a virtual format. Others are going hybrid, blending both in-person and virtual. Both can work—but that all depends on your audience. Engage your customers or members to find out their preference. And then be flexible to deliver your content in the way that best suits their needs and requirements.
Be transparent. Now more than ever, businesses are facing tighter budgets. So be upfront about your value proposition: Provide specifics about the content of your event and what participants can expect to gain (i.e., continuing education hours, accreditation or certification, new industry best practices, etc.).
Use your influence(r). With so many events going digital, there’s a lot of competition out there. If you have a celebrity, industry expert or influencer who will be speaking or presenting at your event, encourage them to help promote your event; and consider a giveaway or added perk to entice audience attendance.
Be engaging. Because so many events are now presented in a virtual format, count on people’s attention spans being much shorter. Don’t plan for 8-hour days, but rather, chunk your content into manageable, well-scripted bites; and consider following up with emails containing videos to continue the conversation beyond the event.
Make tangible connections. Whether you hold your event in-person or virtually, don’t overlook the impact of making a tangible branded connection: Provide shareable Instagram backgrounds or GIFs for attendees to download (and tag your event for greater exposure); and distribute event swag bags in advance to hype the event and make your attendees feel appreciated and included, even if they’re not physically onsite.
Pay attention to data. Use data analytics to track what’s working, and what’s not, during your virtual or in-person events. And then use that data to make format and content changes as you move forward with your next events.
These are a few of the event marketing tips we’re using at Shamrock—if you have others to add to the list, we’d love to hear from you. Connect with us on Facebook.