Are events an effective marketing tool?

Events and marketing 

Michael Ruiz article 

Have you ever thought:

“Do events have any sway when it comes to marketing and the bottom line?”

The answer is a resounding “YES” - events are a great way to market your business/product or service, if you are thinking of delivering an event to market your business then go ahead and do it!

Events are a great way to get your name out to the business community and to the broader market as you would presumably be inviting people in your network as well as those not currently in your network - these are the ones you want most of all so as to convert them into active clients.

If you don’t know where to start when it comes to events or what type of event to put on, think of an event that you really enjoyed - big or small event, it doesn’t matter, what matters is the delivery of the event. Think about thesubject matter you want to present and once you decide on that:

  • your target audience
  • the type of event you want to deliver
  • what do you want to get out of it (purpose)
  • is it to cater to 10, 20, 50, 100 or more people
  • the venue to hold the event
  • any special guest speakers
  • any special guests
  • collaborators

So the above are some and not most of what to keep in mind when planning an event. Every event is different and you will come across various different obstacles at times that you had not planned for, we all do at some stage try and fix it and move on - don't dwell on it.

When you are deciding on your target audience it’s good to keep in mind the types of people (as in roles, CXOs, Sales, Marketing, HR, etc. and customise the event to suit that particular type of audience. I say this because CXOs, Sales, Marketing, HR people are all different and they all require different hooks to get them interested in the first place and then you want them to attend and pay attention as well as become a client! That’s a lot to ask from one person (or multiples) so we have to plan ahead and plan well, I am a stickler for organising and developing a plan to suit everyone - as best I can. It is also good to remember that your ‘usual’ target audience for your business is not necessarily your target audience for this particular event; the event makes the target audience more targeted and therefore you need to plan carefully to keep them interested.

When it comes to the type of event to deliver consider the subject matter and the audience so that the type of event will come to you, it might be an intimate affair with just a few key decision makers and/or influencers or it might well be a big affair casting a wider net and therefore a broader audience. The event can be a coffee affair, breakfast, lunch or other depending on the event type.

Now the most important part of the event is what do you want to get out of it, what is the purpose of the event? We all want to make more sales however the event cannot just be about that, it will lead to a sale hopefully, if we‘ve done our homework, captured the right audience, and ticked all the boxes. However the event can be about a new product or service, it can be about establishing a brand, informing our audience on a partnership or collaboration and how that would work and the benefits of the collaboration or partnership - and what that partnership or collaboration means to the attendees and the wider audience.

Whatever the purpose of the event make sure it’s attainable and not too far fetched as you do not want to waste your time and money putting on an event where the purpose for the event is unclear or that there is no follow-up after the event. Collect contact details, ask them to subscribe to your emails and newsletters and most of all have your call to action ready, the next step; whatever that next step might be - make sure you have their commitment to take that next step.

Here is a link to Samsung’s event marketing and how Apple reacted - very few brands can afford this type of event nevertheless, we can at least try and make our event as memorable as possible.

What are your thoughts on events?