Event planning is meant to be one of the top 15 most stressful jobs in the world. Showtime Events Group are experienced event organisers would like to share some tips on how to run your event for your business without the headaches.
We’ve created this nifty little guide to ensure you are making the most of the channels available to you and taking your event one step closer to ensuring it is the success it deserves to be.
Arguably the most important, the absolute pinnacle of event marketing, is the event page or website. This needs to be incredibly compelling and should contain all of these points;
- Great description: Clearly indicate the topic, time, place and who should attend. The description should include specific benefits for each type of attendee. Make it brief and scan-able. Use third-party endorsements when possible, such as a quote from a previous event.
- Tangible content leading up to and/or during the event. Done right, this can add to the buzz leading up to the event, tap new audiences for attendees and keep the event property top of mind to departing attendees. Content is about capturing great memories!
- Entertainer/ speaker pictures and info: Great entertainment draw crowds like a magnet. The event page should show their faces and list their more about them. If you ask nicely, they may even provide one for you.
- Event image: The image will appear when the page is shared in the social networks. It could be the event logo, a busy field of smiling faces, a picture of a room full of people, or just a genuine smiling face.
- Event-related videos: Show why people should come to your events with videos of past events. If you are just starting out, stock footage is available and you may be able to get footage from the speakers / entertainers that are attending your event. You could even run some interviews and record them. These can be produced quickly using Google Hangouts or Skype. It’s easier than you think and very effective later on
Send it out to whoever you can, ask friends, entertainment acts, speakers and stall holders to share and forward it if needs be. If you have an email list great, if not you will need to build one.
Whatever, you need a great subject line such as “7 things you miss if you aren’t at this event”
If you have positive feedback from previous events (or even feedback from your entertainment/ speakers/ stall holders etc.), use them as quotes in your emails. Also, maybe consider sending it at the weekend when people are less likely to be caught up in work and stress if it is an entertaining invite. If it is more business related, opt for Tuesday or Wednesday when they are in a ‘work’ frame of mind.
Plan to send your email several times to people that may have missed it. For large events, email once months in advance to announce the line-up and to announce any early-bird registration discounts. Email just before this discount ends, and again as the event approaches if you are using a discount. Finally, send an email a few days before with reminders of time, place for registrants and a final pitch for new registration.
Social media & blogs
The hashtag: Pick an event hashtag that’s short, and ideally, unique to your event. Links in social media bios – send them straight to your event website/page. You can also get handy buttons on sites like Facebook that will help you to draw traffic to your site.
Keep it engaging, keep it fun, make it interesting, use GIFS and video where possible and ALWAYS track what is working and what isn’t so that you can improve.
Make sure that the image from the event page appears. Mention speakers/ entertainers, encouraging them to share it with their networks. Post again with videos and to remind people of ticket deadlines.
Offer people the chance to share the event on social media after they have registered – a simple one but often forgotten!
Worth setting up if you can. They will serve to remind, thank, inform and offer the opportunity to share your event on social media to your guests and exhibitors. Don’t forget the hashtag!
Write a pre-event blog post – interview one of your speakers / sponsors / entertainers. Invite speakers/ entertainers/ stall holders to write a guest post (don’t forget to optimise your SEO in all posts)
Photo and video partners
If you don’t have the budget to hire professionals, offer free admission (or even a table in the event space) to a professional photographer or videographer in exchange for services. Make sure they commit to providing you with assets in a reasonable timeframe. And make sure you give them good exposure in exchange for their time.
Invite speakers, sponsors, influencers and members of the press for a night out before the event. This is a chance to bond and have some fun.
Make sure your event page/website is SEO friendly, and that all your social media has its backlinks in place. Utilise what you have!
The event page should have a nice, detailed event description, which includes the keyword several times. If it’s long, break up the text into short, concise paragraphs. Use lots of formatting, including headers, subheaders, internal links, bullet lists, etc.
During the event
Live social media coverage, photographs, run a competition – even a selfie or photograph competition which will get people talking and participating (as well as sharing on social media)
After the event
Event recap blog posts are often easy and fun to write. They can include all kinds of relevant content. They can include the following: A summary of your event, a gallery of event photos. You can also use email surveys to gather useful information and feedback for your next event.
Social Media – share photos, thank people, keep your eyes peeled for mentions (even easier if you utilised a hashtag)!
Get the right team behind you
Members of the Northampton Chamber Showtime Events Group manage all aspects of events (large and small) and provide a huge range of services to help your event run smoothly. These include:
- Event Planning & Management
- Infrastructure & Tents
- Lighting, Sound & Music
- Security & First Aid
If you have an event coming up and would like to outsource the headaches contact David Bailey from Showtime Events Group at email@example.com
Happy event planning!