Whilst digital marketing should always be a significant part of your overall strategy, live events offer their own benefits. And when done correctly, can have a far bigger impact than a few social media adverts. Here’s how to get the most from your event.
It is 2018, so you may think that the vast majority of marketing efforts should be focused on online projects. After all, that is where most of us spend much of our time.
However, while online marketing strategies are undoubtedly important, more and more firms are realizing that live events offer their own unique advantages when it comes to unmatched opportunities for potential customers to touch, demo and interact with a product or a service.
If you are interested in learning about the next step in your marketing strategy, read on to learn how to use live events as a marketing tool in the online age.
1. Understand why live events are so crucial to your marketing strategy
Before you can start utilizing live events as a marketing tool, you need to understand why they should be so integral to your marketing strategy.
The main reason for this is that live events present an opportunity for your company to connect directly with your target audiences. More than is possible in a blog post, in an Instagram ad, or other forms of digital marketing. Putting together a live event gives you the chance to design and execute a compelling brand narrative that lasts for a lot longer.
Think about it: there’s a reason why Apple always announces its new products at a live event, not in a mass email.
Over the course of your live event, you can have your brand's narrative clearly articulated on your terms. This is incredibly valuable if you are looking for a way to engage with customers on a deeper level and to stand out from the loud noise of your industry.
2. Design your events so the main priority is to provide value
So, during your live event, the main priority must be to provide value to your audience. No matter what type of live event you are putting on, your audience have come because they wanted to obtain something from it (i.e., insightful knowledge on the particular topic). Therefore, it is crucial that you provide them that.
What they are looking for is going to vary based on the type of business you run and the kind of live event you are hosting. But, regardless, you must provide them with value at the same time as raising awareness of your brand.
By providing the audience with value, they will, in turn, be grateful for the knowledge you have shared with them and will likely recall that when making a relevant consumer decision.
3. Remember the secondary audiences
In this online era, it isn't just the people in attendance who are going to be privy to the event; you may also have thousands of people tuning in through social sharing on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
Instead of solely focusing your efforts on the people who will be on-site, you must allocate the same amount of energy to ensuring that the live event is share-friendly. How can you connect and engage with the secondary audience who will be tuning in? How can you get those who are on-site to engage with the secondary audience?
In other words, how can you also utilize online tools to market your event, and subsequently your brand, further?
4. Create plenty of opportunities for networking
There is a good chance that the people who have decided to attend your live event are also interested in networking opportunities. Therefore, you want to ensure that you are creating plenty of opportunities for networking — both for yourself and for your attendees — in the schedule.
Networking is all about securing connections and enhancing relationships, so you must present yourself appropriately throughout the whole live event as you are the spokesperson for your company.
Make it a goal to get to know as many people as possible and discover ways you can be a resource to them.
You never know who you will meet while networking, but there is no harm in doing it as much and as often as possible.
Author: Hisham Wyne is an internationally recognized MC, broadcaster, presenter and moderator who helps the world's best-known brands create memorable occasions. He regularly hosts conferences, panel sessions, gala dinners and award ceremonies for some of the world's best brands. With 150+ events under his belt, Hisham is the professional speaker that brands and agencies turn to when wanting to interview, engage and entertain government VVIPs and Hollywood celebrities.