The second instalment in event marketing from the team at Event Insurance Services – how to promote your event during and after it
Promotion during the event
The day of your event is an ideal opportunity to promote your message or future events to attendees. It is also an opportunity to show those who did not attend exactly what they are missing. You will probably be very busy ensuring the event runs smoothly during the day(s), so make sure you do as much preparation beforehand as possible.
Make sure you have plenty of branded materials such as flyers and banners at your event. If someone takes a photograph you want your brand to be in the picture! You might want to include goodie bags too with branded pens, information and other useful bits and pieces. This will ensure people remember your brand when they leave.
Keep in mind that your brand isn’t just your logo, it’s everything your company stands for, so make sure you portray your brand’s image appropriately. Try to educate attendees about your event/brand and give them useful information such as an events calendar so they can book on to the next one there and then.
Social media will be immeasurably important on the day of your event. This is where anyone who couldn’t attend your event will see just how good it really is and can engage with your brand or event attendees instantaneously.
Make sure you are posting photos, videos, quotes and regular updates throughout the day. You might even want to try using Facebook Live to give anyone on Facebook an insight into your event. It’s a good idea to set up your own hashtag too if you want to try and get it trending on Twitter!
If you don’t think you will have much time to post on social media throughout the day, you can use a tool such as Hootsuite to schedule some social posts. Although this isn’t as effective as doing it live, it will encourage your attendees to get involved. Try to start a conversation with your audience; ask them questions and really get them engaged to spread your message further.
Getting information from your attendees, such as email addresses, will give you a way to follow up with them after the event and continue promoting your brand. If your attendees didn’t need to sign up to your event, you may not have already collected this data, so you’ll need to find a way to convince them to hand over their details.
Simple techniques such as competitions or prize draws are very effective. At smaller events, networking with people and taking contact details directly is a much more personal way of doing things. You might also want to try interviewing people to get their opinions on the event. You can use these interviews in any blogs or videos you make after the event – remember to ask for contributors’ contact details so you can share it with them later.
Post event promotion
Once the event is over, you don’t want people to just forget about it straight away. The promotion work is far from over as you need to remind attendees of what they experienced on the day and get people who didn’t attend to kick themselves for missing out!
Blogging and image galleries
Now is the time to start blogging and telling the story of your event. Don’t just send out one blog and leave it at that, create a series of blogs or richer content such as slideshows, videos or infographics detailing different parts of your event. Include mentions of specific attendees and they will be more likely to share your blogs. You can schedule these blogs to be published for weeks to come, ensuring the impact of your event continues long after the event itself.
You might have had a photographer at your event, or perhaps you were taking photos yourself or encouraging attendees to do so and then post them on social media. Gather these images together and create an image gallery on your website. People are keen to engage with this type of rich media and will be eager to see if they are in any of the pictures!
Once again, social media is ideal for continuing to promote your event once it’s over. You can reach out to individual attendees, engage with anyone who used your event’s hashtag and push out any relevant information (eg. competition winners). Social media also gives you an opportunity to thank any contributors or attendees publicly.
If you are producing any blog content regarding your event or image galleries, social media is a great place to promote it. Don’t be afraid to tag people who you think it might interest and continue using your event’s hashtag after the event.
A follow up email to the people who attended will allow you to continue contact and provide them with personalised information about the event they attended as well as a reminder for future events. You might have captured more data at your event, so be sure to add these people to your mailing list. Again, if you have created blogs or photo galleries, you should share them via this follow up email.
Email can again be used to contact those who didn’t manage to attend with a personalised message, letting them know what they missed out on. You want to be careful not to seem like you are spamming people though, so don’t overdo it and give people the opportunity to unsubscribe.
TO DO LIST
DURING THE EVENT
- Lay out your branded materials or be available to hand them out to attendees on arrival
- Start posting live updates on social media before guests even arrive
- Implement your methods of data collection and actively encourage participation
- Promote your next event/business to your audience during the event
- Try to get people to sign up to your next event there and then
- Send your ‘thank you for attending’ email to attendees and a ‘here is what you missed’ email to those who didn’t make it
- Pull together all your photographs and create an image gallery
- Start blogging about your event
- Send another email out to your database linking to your blog and photo gallery
- Post blogs and image galleries on social media
- Perhaps send out another press release post event detailing anything significant from the day (eg. money raised for charity, records broken, business developments etc.)
- Analyse the success of your paid advertising
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Established in 1996, Event Insurance Services is a specialised intermediary offering competitive event insurance. Its policies provide affordable, reliable insurance, tailored to fit the scale and style of the occasion – from school fêtes and small ceremonies to high profile weddings and events. Event insurance is the safety net for anyone organising an event. It can cover a policy holder against public liability, employer’s liability, damage to event equipment, cancellation of events (including cancellations due to adverse weather conditions) and much more. As well as the support of 2,500 insurance brokers throughout Great Britain, Northern Ireland and the Channel Islands, Event Insurance Services also has a valued network of more than 1,000 UK venues, outlets and support services in the wedding and event industry. 01425 470360 / www.eventsinsurance.co.uk