Organizing an event takes a lot of effort and planning, but it can be even more difficult to promote it. Without effective promotion, it’s unlikely that your event will be well-attended or successful.
Thankfully, there are plenty of creative methods to include in your event marketing plan that don’t cost much money and require minimal time investment. From using social media to creating eye-catching visuals, these tips will help you ensure that your event is seen by the right people and gets attendees excited.
The importance of event promotion
At the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, 83% of Americans admitted that they missed participating in in-person meetings and conventions. Now that restrictions have eased, it’s time for businesses to get back on their feet and create events to bring people together and promote their products and services.
However, it’s not enough to just host an event — you must also have a plan for how to market and promote it. The right promotional strategy will ensure that the right people know about your event and help you maximize attendance.
With a saturated market and an abundance of events to choose from, it can be difficult to stand out. That’s why coming up with creative ways to promote your event is a must.
It’s important to get people talking about your event before, during, and after it takes place. You want your event to be remembered and make an impact long after it ends.
Here are seven promotion ideas for how to market an event:
Word of mouth
Word of mouth is one of the most powerful and effective event promotion strategies. Ask your friends, family, colleagues, associates, and current customers to spread the word about your upcoming event. They can do so through social media, email, text messages, and even in person. This is a great strategy for your event marketing plan to reach a much wider audience and draw attention to your event.
A website allows you to distribute firsthand information regarding the event, such as date and time, location, ticketing information, and more. Additionally, it’s easy to share your website on social media platforms or via email so that you can reach potential attendees quickly and easily.
You can also use Configio, an event solutions tool that allows you to design beautiful registration websites for each of your events. This way, you have a central hub that participants can access for resources, information, and more.
With an average expected ROI of $40 for every $1 spent on email marketing, it’s no wonder that email remains to be one of the most effective event digital marketing tools. It allows you to reach your target audience quickly and easily. You can segment your email list based on interests, demographics, or past purchases to send targeted emails that are more likely to be opened and read by potential attendees.
You can also run paid ads to promote your event. This includes online advertising platforms such as Google AdWords, Facebook and Instagram Ads, and Twitter Ads. Paid ads are a great way to reach a wide audience quickly, but they can be expensive if you’re not careful with targeting.
Joining networking groups and attending professional events can be a great way to promote an event. These groups often have their own websites, newsletters, and databases of contacts that can provide invaluable exposure for your upcoming event. Additionally, many of these groups also offer members the opportunity to submit press releases or announcements about their upcoming events, which can help spread the word beyond just their own membership base.
Event discovery sites
You can also post on sites dedicated to promoting events. These sites are a great way to reach an audience that is specifically looking for happenings in your industry. Many of these websites also have useful features like the ability to add additional details and images to make your event stand out, so make sure to optimize your posts.
Of course, social media should be a part of your event marketing plan. Reaching out to your target audience through social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok is an effective social media event promotion strategy to get the word out about your event.
Leveraging social media for event promotion
Social media promotion plays a significant role in getting the word out about an event, so much so that 58% of marketers use platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok to promote their event.
With nearly 5 billion people using social media in their day-to-day lives, you don’t want to miss out on the opportunity to reach a wider audience. It’s important to create a social media event promotion strategy that includes the platforms and content type (photos, videos, text) best suited for your event.
The key to success is creating engaging content that resonates with your target audience. Here are three tips on how to promote an event:
Choose the right social media platform
In the age of digital communication, social media has become a powerful tool for your event marketing plan. It’s important to choose the right platform for your event in order to maximize its reach. For example, Facebook is best suited for reaching out to a broader audience and building relationships with potential attendees, while Twitter can be used to provide real-time updates about an event. Instagram, Pinterest, and TikTok are great options when it comes to providing visual content related to your event.
Additionally, Americans aged 25 to 34 years make up a significant chunk of Facebook’s user base, specifically 23.7%. Meanwhile, younger audiences, aged between 10 and 19 years old, comprise 25% of TikTok’s user base.
Consider influencer marketing
Partnering with influencers in your industry lets you reach their existing audience and dramatically increase awareness of your event. Influencers have built-in followings and connections that will help spread the word about your event quickly and efficiently.
Look for influencers who are already engaged with topics related to the event, or those whose interests align closely with yours. You may even be able to find local influencers in your area who could attend the event.
Encourage user-generated content
One of the most creative ways to promote an event is user-generated content (UGC). UGC is content created by your target audience and shared on social media platforms. It can be in the form of photos, videos, or text. Not only does it promote an event, but it also allows you to engage with potential attendees who are interested in attending the event.
Pre-event promotion strategies to generate buzz
Make sure to give your event ample time for promotion before the big day. You want your event to be visible to as many people as possible for a more favorable turnout.
Here are some creative ways to promote an event:
Develop a dedicated registration website
Creating a dedicated registration website for your event is a great way to get the word out and build anticipation. Having a place where people can easily find information and sign up gives you an effective platform that allows users to quickly register, share the details of your event with their friends, and stay informed on any new developments or changes.
Configio is a great resource for creating a registration website in just minutes with our drag-and-drop editor. Our platform is also equipped with advanced, built-in SEO tools to ensure your event is visible to your target audience.
Create eye-catching infographics
Infographics are a great way to quickly and concisely share information about your event. They allow you to present key information in an attractive and easily digestible format that will grab the attention of your target audience.
To create effective infographics, use high-quality visuals and colors that stand out from the crowd. You can also include compelling statistics, quotes, or other data points that make your infographic more interesting and engaging.
Post a countdown
Maximize social media to tease your campaign. One of the top event digital marketing strategies is to post a countdown to your event. Not only will this create more anticipation, but the consistent reminder will increase awareness and engagement with potential guests.
You can create a countdown video template and post it on your brand’s Instagram Story or TikTok Reels. A countdown post can also be done with static graphics, like on Facebook or Twitter.
Make an event page
Facebook has events feature that allows you to create a page for your event. This is the perfect place to post updates, share photos and videos, and invite people to join your event.
Don’t forget to include all the important details such as date, time, location, and cost. It’s helpful for keeping participants engaged and excited leading up to the event. Moreover, you can keep track of the number of people attending and their feedback.
Come up with a branded hashtag
Another event promotion strategy you should implement is a branded hashtag. This can help you track mentions of your event across various social media platforms and provide an easy way for people to follow the discussion. It will also provide an opportunity to join in on conversations related to your event and further promote it on different channels.
You can follow the format [Event Name] + [Year], or you can come up with something creative that is more likely to stick in people’s minds. Make sure it’s short, snappy, and memorable so that it doesn’t get lost among other conversations. Plus, it’s best to do a quick search to make sure that the hashtag isn’t already in use by another event.
Live tweet preparations for your event
Tell your event by live tweeting your preparations. This creative event digital marketing strategy not only builds buzz but also helps create a sense of anticipation. Make sure your tweets are inspiring, informative, and engaging to encourage people to spread the word.
You can focus on the event’s unique features, such as its venue or any special activities. If you have an interesting story to tell about how your team is planning the event, share it and create a theme around it.
Produce behind-the-scene videos
Aside from live-tweeting your event prep, behind-the-scenes videos should also be a part of your event marketing plan. They serve as a great way to build anticipation and excitement around your event.
Take the opportunity to showcase working moments, venue set-ups, and interviews with speakers or performers — anything that will give potential attendees a sneak peek into what’s in store for them at the event. Make sure you share these videos across all your social media channels to maximize exposure.
Reach out to those who have already registered for the event and ask them to share their enthusiasm about it with their social networks. This will not only create a buzz prior to the event, but it also shows existing registrants how excited you are for them to attend. Have participants share stories or quotes that answer questions such as “Why did you decide to come?” or “What do you hope to get out of this experience?”
Interviews can be conducted over the phone, video chat, or even in person if it’s possible. To really get the word out, post snippets of these conversations online. People love short-form content, and you’ll be able to capture more attention if your posts are succinct and easily consumable.
Additionally, you can repurpose interviews into various types of content, from blog posts and social media posts to Instagram and TikTok videos. This way, you can get more ROI for less capital.
Organize pre-event webinars and podcasts
Webinars and podcasts are a great way to generate interest in your event before it starts. They allow you to spread the word about the event, highlight its key features, and get people excited about attending. Offer webinars and podcasts with speakers who have expertise on related topics or unique perspectives that will be discussed during the event. Make sure to include Q&A sessions at the end of each broadcast so audience members can ask questions and interact directly with your experts.
The best thing about these promotion ideas is that they’re seen as informative and educational, so you can build your authority while promoting your event. Don’t forget to include contact information for your event so that listeners can easily find out more information and purchase tickets or register easily.
Distribute press releases
Press releases can be sent to local media outlets, posted on your website and social media accounts, or shared with other industry influencers who may be interested in attending. A well-crafted press release should include all of the pertinent information such as date, time, location, what is being celebrated/promoted at the event, and any special guests that will be there. It’s also important to keep it concise and interesting to catch the attention of readers.
If you make it easy for media outlets to find out more information, they may be more likely to feature your event. The better the press release, the more likely you are to get coverage.
Choose the right event format
Just like how there is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to marketing, there is also no one-size-fits-all event format. To ensure success, choose an event format that best fits your target audience and budget.
Conferences are an excellent choice for events that require a large number of attendees. They provide the opportunity to present information and give speeches, as well as host workshops or classes. Conferences also allow guests to network with others in the same field or related industries.
The greatest advantage of conferences is that they are relatively easy to promote and manage. To ensure maximum attendance, make sure to pick a topic or theme that will draw in an audience. Additionally, it’s important to choose a venue that fits the conference’s needs and budget.
The downside to this type of event is the cost of hosting it. Conferences usually require more resources than other types of events, including paying for speakers and travel expenses. Nonetheless, they’re an effective way to reach a large number of people and build a network.
On the other hand, seminars are considered smaller than conferences. Another advantage of a seminar is that it allows your target audience to investigate specific topics in more detail. You can also use this format to bring in experts and leverage their influence.
For your seminar event marketing plan, you may want to create a website that focuses on the details of the events, including topics and speakers. Then, use it to drive traffic to the registration page.
Just like conferences and seminars, workshops also lean toward educating participants about your industry, brand, products, and services. A major difference is that workshops are more interactive, allowing participants to practice the skills they’ve learned. Workshops also allow for a smaller audience, providing an intimate setting that encourages conversation and networking opportunities.
The best event digital marketing strategy for workshops is to promote the value of the knowledge and skills that attendees will gain, as well as any networking opportunities.
Product launches are the perfect way to get people excited about a new product. Host an event that showcases your new product or service and have plenty of giveaways, fun activities, and food to keep everyone engaged.
Make sure you plan and give yourself enough time to promote the event — create an attractive invitation card, share it on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, post flyers around town, reach out to local radio stations for interviews or advertisements — anything that will help spread the word.
Trade shows are a great way to get your brand in front of thousands of potential attendees. It’s important that the show you choose is relevant to your target audience and matches the theme or purpose of your event. You can charge a fee for other brands in your industry to exhibit at your event, or you can offer them free space in exchange for promoting the event to their own audiences.
Networking events are a great way to get the word out about your brand. These types of events allow you to meet new people and introduce them to your product or service.
For example, if you’re a business coach, host an event where people can connect with each other and build their network. You can also use networking events as an opportunity to showcase your skills and expertise by giving a talk or demonstration on a relevant topic.
Auctions are another type of event format you can host. They can be great for fundraising, but they can also be used to promote a product or service. If you have something of value, such as tickets to a show, artwork, or services from local vendors, an auction could be the perfect way to reach out and get people excited about your event.
It can also generate more buzz since it evokes a feeling of exclusivity and competition. Plus, you can get people to interact with your event in a fun way by bidding for the items or services that are being offered.
Physical, virtual, or hybrid?
Aside from knowing how to promote an event, one of the major questions that brands have to answer is whether to organize physical, virtual, or hybrid events. The answer largely depends on the type of event, budget, and target audience you want.
Physical events are often better suited for large gatherings or conferences that require in-person networking or collaboration. These types of events also provide an opportunity to explore a physical space and create a memorable experience for attendees.
On the other hand, virtual events offer brands the flexibility to reach wider audiences without having to worry about costs associated with travel and lodging. These events can often be more cost-effective and offer opportunities to reach audiences in different countries or time zones.
Finally, hybrid events combine the best of both physical and virtual formats. These events often allow for a larger audience reach as well as an engaging atmosphere that participants can enjoy from their own homes.
Personalize your promotion
Knowing how to market an event and understanding the different types of event digital marketing strategies can help you craft an effective event marketing plan to increase attendance. From social media to email marketing, there are plenty of creative ways to promote your event and get the word out to potential attendees.
The most important thing to remember is to personalize your promotion. Whether it’s creating custom social media content or sending out personalized emails, tailoring your message to your target audience is key to getting the attention of potential attendees and making them feel connected to the event.
Make sure to maximize tools like Configio to help you organize everything about your event, from registration to promotional materials, and track your success. With our event management software, you can execute these creative strategies and more with ease.
Request a demo today and start elevating your event marketing strategies to the next level.
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