You’ve brainstormed, planned, and done all the upfront work for your event. But how do you actually get people to attend? Dedicating time and resources to promotion is essential to your event’s success. In this blog article, we’ll outline different ways you can promote your event and increase your attendance, no matter your budget.
Promote Your Event in the Right Places
Before you dive head first into your event promotion, you need to create a website or landing page. Think of a site as the virtual equivalent of your real-world event. It’s where you can immerse your audience in an aesthetic experience while also communicating key details. Having a single source of information for your attendees, and one that they can share within their circles to help in your promotion is practically a cost-free endorsement.
But, just like getting people to your event, you also need to have a strategy to drive them to your website. That’s where the power of SEO comes in. When optimized well, your event site will help you take advantage of the power of search. Organic search accounts for about 28.5% of all traffic driven to websites on the Internet. Use target keywords on your event page. If your event is a trade show or conference all about technology, make sure to have relevant words and phrases strategically placed throughout the site.
Once your site is live, develop a marketing strategy around social media to rally potential attendees. According to a report by Eventbrite and Buffer, almost 25% of traffic to event registration pages comes from social media. Decide what channels are best for reaching your target audience. If you’re trying to connect with a younger demographic, launching both organic and paid posts on Facebook and Instagram will better serve you than a LinkedIn campaign might.
On a tight budget? Sharing the details of your event on event listings pages is an inexpensive way to garner the attention of potential attendees. There are even free event listing pages where you can post to help spread the word and make your event a success.
Another great way to reach your target audience is through industry-relevant outlets and event speakers. Ask them if they’re willing to publicize your upcoming event and link to your site; this could help you increase your attendance and influence relevant people in your target audience.
Provide Registration Incentives
Now that you’ve shared your event details across all the relevant channels and gotten people to your website, you want them to purchase a ticket. It’s no secret that costs can get steep when you’re producing an event. To achieve a strong ROI, you might need to charge a high price point for event tickets and passes.
But you don’t want your potential attendees to turn away because of sticker shock. To alleviate the cost, offer exclusive time-sensitive discounts to incentivize registration. Implementing an “early bird pricing” strategy is a great way to increase ticket sales. Make sure you offer enough of a discount to entice people to buy their tickets now instead of waiting until the last minute.
Along with special pricing, a competition centered around free tickets, discounted tickets, or a VIP upgrade will help to create buzz around your event.
Leverage Your Content Marketing
It’s essential to build excitement around your event, and content marketing can help you do that. Whether you’re writing blog posts (like this), sharing infographics, or producing video teasers, these tactics can all increase event awareness.
Leveraging video can especially strengthen your pre-event content marketing strategy to get things off to a great start. Video interviews with keynote speakers, tips for making the most out of the event, and a highlight reel of last year’s event are all great visuals to inspire enthusiasm from guests.
Take note from Refinery 29, a digital media giant who hosts an annual “29 Rooms” event celebrating art and culture through interactive exhibits. They released a “ticket trailer” video hyping the event through behind-the-scenes snippets and invited people to purchase tickets.
Create a Personalized Email Nurture Campaign
Forty percent of marketers believe email marketing is the single-most effective channel to promote an event. With other forms of outreach, it can feel like you’re starting from scratch. But with email marketing, you have a database of contacts you want to reach. Whether those contacts are from previous events or from lead generation opportunities on your website, now is the time to re-engage them.
When building out your email campaign, it’s important to remember that your contacts are unique. You have a better chance of improving click-through rates and converting potential attendees when you use personalization tactics.
Along with your personalization strategies, make sure you create segmented lists when promoting your event. You can set up email automation to guarantee that your contacts are receiving content that’s most relevant to their needs. Companies who automate emails are 133% more likely to send messages that coincide with the purchase cycle of their customers. The last thing you want is to send emails asking people to register for your event who have already secured their ticket.
No matter how you choose to spread the word in the months leading up to your event, your promotional tactics will be crucial to your event’s success. Let’s chat about developing your event strategy.