If you need a quick & dirty event marketing plan, boy, do I have one for you.
Follow these 14 steps and your event marketing plan will be super fly:
- Pitch. It can take a while to build media contacts. Brainstorm news outlets and specific reporters or bloggers, and reach out to them as far in advance of the event as possible. Prep them with talking points, easy-to-use images, contacts, and anything else that might peak their interest and make their jobs easier.
- Build your subscriber list. Use every opportunity, be it ticket sales or a pen-and-paper sign up sheet to capture emails. Add these emails to your customer relationship management (CRM), email service provider (ESP), or marketing automation platforms so you can nurture them as time goes by.
- Be social media friendly. Create strong and easily shareable messages about your event across your channels.
- Drive traffic. Use online, in-person, and paper announcements to encourage people to take action by joining your subscriber list, visiting your website, joining your blog, signing up for your newsletter, or following your organization on social media.
- Brand your sales page. Branding your sales page on sites like Brown Paper Tickets or Eventbrite is usually free and looks pro.
- Create event pages. Both Facebook and Google+ offer event pages. Use them to promote. You can also create Groups on Facebook that allow you to build personalized audiences around key topics — a great way to promote your event to an already-interested audience.
- Ensure your registration system captures emails. Need I say more?
- Promote via social media. Remembering the 80/20 rule, make sure to promote your events, products, and services only 20% of the time. The rest of the time, publish original content to drive traffic to your site and build audience loyalty. Don’t forget to promote other people’s work, too!
- Leverage the list. Create and send targeted email invitations to friends, family, colleagues, and fans. Don’t forget to explain why you’re passionate about this event, how it will benefit your audience (e.g., solve their problems), and all the logistical deets.
- Capture your event. Never forget to turn your hard work into repurposable content. Photograph, video, tweet, record, interview — you name it, you can create useful, entertaining, or moving content from your live and online events.
- Create opportunities for new audiences. Your events are a perfect place to find new friends. Ensure that, at the event itself, you have swag, brochures, and, if possible, calls to action available to audience members new and old.
- Use your presenters. Request that presenters introduce you to people who would love to have your information, or vice versa. Reach out promptly after the event with a thoughtful, useful emails that benefit your new acquaintances.
- Pre-write blog posts. Before the event, create outlines or sketches of blog posts so you can get those out pronto. Be effusive in your thanks to anyone who is thankable.
- Warehouse. Create digital and hard files of all the materials you used and media mentions generated. No need to reinvent the wheel next time you have an event.
Events provide excellent opportunities to please and expand your audience. With a (quick & dirty) event marketing plan like this one, it’s easy to see how the marketing pieces fit together and build on one another.
Happy event marketing planning!
Anything I left out? Let us know in the comments.
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