Marketing for a specific event requires a different approach from your regularly scheduled marketing plan.
You don’t need to abandon your everyday marketing to shift focus to market your event; it’s not one or the other. What you do need to do is plan ahead and give your team enough time to do it right.
The reality is you want your event to be a success. Rushing the marketing can permeate into myriad aspects of your event – from the sponsorship deliverables to the day-of show activities and even the follow-up strategy after the event.
Good Events Can Take Months to Plan & Market
The trick is to plan ahead, WAY ahead. If you’re hosting an annual event this means start talking about next year’s event as soon as this year’s event has ended. For a new event, you want to start planning your marketing as soon as you know it’s happening – even if you don’t have a date yet.
A good rule to live by – is aim for a 3-month minimum to market any live or virtual event. The more time you allot, the more opportunity you have for a streamlined program.
Starting early in the planning process gives you time to secure sponsorships, create dedicated marketing material including flyers, social accounts, email marketing and more.
It also gives attendees time to plan ahead too. Of course, this is even more important if it is a destination, in-person event that people will need to book travel for. But it is also true of virtual events. Even though there are fewer actual arrangements for your attendees to make, blocking out the time to attend a virtual event is more likely to happen if they know about it well in advance.
Pushing Hard Through the Finish
Once you are about two months away from any registration or reservation deadlines you should be reaching out regularly to your audience to make sure people don’t forget or lose track of the deadline dates.
Additionally, the closer to the actual date – the more comprehensive your marketing should become. Social posts should be shared daily with sponsors and speakers also posting about the event, sharing registration information, as well as key value-adds for your attendees.
Event reminders and communications chock full of details to build enthusiasm should go out to those who have registered as the event date rolls in.
Once your event date comes around, you should be ready to go with day-of engagement planned and ready to launch.
While it may all sound so simple, the truth is, there are a lot of moving parts when it comes to event marketing. We would be happy to talk to you more specifically about your upcoming event’s marketing timeline.