Regardless of the size of your business or organization, it is important to take advantage of business-related events to increase customer engagement and satisfaction, and to generate more leads. Before hosting an event, however, getting organized is a must.
Marketing events come in all shapes and sizes, from online webinars to large sponsored conferences. The steps behind how they’re planned and executed, however, should still be the same. Here are six steps to follow if you want to get the most out of your event-based marketing efforts.
Step 1- Form a Team and Collaborate
Determine who will be on your event marketing team for each separate event. Include the people who will help you develop stellar material that’s related to each specific event, even if they’re outside of the marketing department. For instance, if you’re hosting an event for a new software release, you might want to include someone who helped create the product. This way, you’ll ensure that the content your team develops for the event centers around the software’s most important features.
Empower team members to actively be involved throughout the marketing event project by designating a cloud-based project platform they can use to collaborate. This way, all team members will know where the status of a project is at any given time, as well as any relevant project updates.
Step 2- Assign Ownership for Tasks and Content
Use the project collaboration tool you designated in step one to assign project tasks with due dates for each team member. This will ensure every team member knows what event project items he or she is responsible for, and specifically when they’re needed. This will give you enough time to move around tasks and dates if anything conflicts before you begin to work on your event. For some events, you might need a great graphics designer, and for others, you might need a great videographer. Know team members’ strengths and assign tasks accordingly.
Step 3- Generate Content
After forming your team and assigning tasks, it’s time to get to work. You’ll want to establish a content review process, and editorial standards before your team start developing content for each event. This way, you’ll have a consistent message about your event across channels, and content that’s created by different team members will always meet the same standard. For instance, you might want a special logo on each piece of content generated for an event, or you might want a certain type of formatting on printed items.
Step 4- Distribute Content
Know where and how you want to distribute content for your event. Should you show a sneak peek of your upcoming webinar on your YouTube channel to build hype? Or do you want to email a document for registrants to review ahead of time? Either way, it’s a great idea to set up different content distribution phases and automate them. For instance, if you mention an upcoming blowout sale you’re hosting in a blog post you published before the event to build hype, allow readers to sign up to receive automated notifications right before it starts.
Step 5- Track and Organize Everything
You should always track how prospects and customers are engaging with the content surrounding an event, especially online. Track how many webinar attendees stayed for your whole presentation, and how many attendees showed up to your in-person events. You’ll also want to track response rates and engagement rates for social media campaigns and emails about the event.
Once you track everything, store the information in a central location every team member can access. In this location, organize information by event title, campaign titles, and content types. This way, you’ll be able to see what’s working before, during, and after an event.
Step 6- Measure and Respond
As you track your content, use analytics to measure how it’s performing in real-time. You don’t want to keep publishing content that fails to get people interested in your upcoming event. If an event isn’t successful, this information will help you understand why. Did you get as many people to sign up as you originally wanted? Why or why not? If the data proves that you did have a successful event, then use that momentum to host a follow-up event or do something else (e.g. a post-event sweepstakes) to keep attendees engaged.
In today’s fast-paced world, marketers need to seize every opportunity to build relationships and earn the trust of prospective buyers and customers. By following the steps laid out above, your event-based marketing can be a tool for seizing those opportunities.