Well-designed event marketing is the perfect way to engage with potential prospects in a live setting and begin to build long-lasting partnerships. In fact, 31% of marketers believe that event marketing is the single most effective marketing channel.
In selling either a product or service in the B2B or B2C space, building relationships is paramount. People don’t want to do business with those they don’t trust or relate to. In this day and age, consumers looking to make significant purchase decisions want to be more than “pitched to.”
Here are three tips to plan and execute thoughtful, successful events.
Set Event Goals
There are varying costs associated with hosting events to market products or services. Because of this, it is very important to establish specific, measurable metrics around which to create your event. Here are some common event strategy questions that need to be answered before jumping into planning:
- What are you trying to achieve and what event concept will facilitate your goals? For example, is the goal:
- To grow prospective leads for a new product launch?
- To engage in and strengthen current relationships with your industry partners?
- To network and meet a completely new set of contacts?
- What is your timeline?
- How will you measure success?
Putting a concrete, attainable number on your goals will help you define the success of the event. After thinking through these things, you’ll have the specifics you need for planning an event with a great ROI.
Here at AOR, we have lots of experience in branding our clients’ trade show booths, lead generation events and even our own annual client appreciation event. So naturally, we suggest including a little creativity in the planning of a memorable event. Come up with an event theme and pull that theme through all of the guest experience touch points, starting with promotion!
The means of promoting events are vast, depending on your event strategy. We highly recommend taking advantage of technology for promotion—branded event registration websites, email marketing and social media. The best part of utilizing digital marketing tactics for events is that they are targeted and easily trackable.
Don’t Forget to Follow Up!
So you have executed the perfect event reaching your goals. Congratulations. To keep the event top of mind with potential clients, be the first to follow up.
A personal touch is key. Be sure to send a thank you note and recap any conversation you may have had with the attendees. Business relationships, like any other regular relationship, take time to develop, and thoughtful follow-through is vitally important.
There is a multitude of event types you can use to attract and capture the attention of potential clients—from launch parties and thought leadership seminars to golf outings. In our personal experience with event marketing, we have found that it is essential to define the strategy and goals before hosting an event rather than throwing together a gathering, tradeshow or party just for the sake of doing so.
Cheers to your next successful event!