Promoting Your Upcoming Business Event: The Complete Do’s and Don’ts
Planning a business event takes time and effort, but that’s just one piece of the puzzle. You also need to promote your event and ensure it fulfills its purpose. The challenge lies in getting your target audience to show up and take the desired action.
Event promotion is similar to marketing a business. As a host, you must define your target market and determine how to reach those people. After that, you may launch an advertising campaign, send marketing emails, and spread the word on social media.
Like with most things, it’s the little details that matter. For example, share behind-the-scenes photos to market your event online. In this case, using an image resizer to optimize your photos for each platform makes sense. Otherwise, they may look distorted or blurry and negatively affect your brand.
With that in mind, let’s discuss the best practices for promoting your next business event.
DO: Get to Know Your Target Audience
First things first, determine who should attend your event. Identify one or more groups or companies that could benefit from hearing, then craft your value proposition.
Let’s say you’re hosting a workshop on creating engaging video content. Your target audience may include entrepreneurs, small business owners, content creators, or digital marketers.
Next, think about their needs and pain points. For example, small business owners may want to learn how to create compelling video content to promote their products on a budget. Vloggers, on the other hand, may be interested in video optimization and other technical aspects.
Research each of these groups, narrow them down, and draft a marketing strategy that aligns with their needs.
DO: Build an Event Landing Page
Your business website or blog can be an effective marketing tool, but you’ll likely get better results with an event landing page.
Unlike a traditional website, landing pages revolve around specific products, services, or events and have one clear goal. This targeted focus can streamline marketing, resulting in higher conversions.
Event landing pages fall into two categories:
- Lead generation landing pages, which encourage visitors to leave their contact details to receive more information;
- You can use event registration landing pages to sell tickets or get people to book their spots.
A third option is to create a single landing page for lead generation and event registration, but you must be careful not to confuse visitors.
DO: Promote Your Business Event on Social Media
Your event landing page will only do a little if no one knows about it. Therefore, promoting it on your social media pages and other platforms is crucial. You could share teaser videos on YouTube, create an event page on Facebook or LinkedIn, launch an advertising campaign, and more.
Still, trying to figure out where to start? Let’s see some of the best ways to promote your business event on social media:
- Ask the event speakers, sponsors, and other parties to spread the word about your event on their social media pages.
- Team up with your niche’s bloggers, influencers, and industry experts; they can help promote your event through sponsored posts, videos, or live Q&A sessions.
- Offer free tickets, promotional items, or discounts to incentivize participation.
- Share engaging content related to the event and use hashtags to gain exposure.
Another option is to leverage user-generated content to market your next event. Ask attendees to share their reasons for participating or encourage the speakers to give a sneak peek into the event.
Don’t: Forget to Set a Budget for Event Marketing
A lot goes into promoting an event, and you may need more money. Paid advertising alone can cost thousands of dollars, depending on your target audience.
On the positive side, planning cost-effective events doesn’t have to be complicated. Once you have set a budget, consider the following options:
- Build an email list of potential attendees and send them regular updates;
- Partner with trade organizations and non-competing businesses in the same niche as you;
- List your event on free platforms like Meetup, 10Times, and Yelp;
- Create Instagram stories with hashtags;
- Start a Facebook group where potential attendees can ask questions, network, and provide feedback;
- Share video testimonials from previous participants ;
- Create a Spotify playlist for your event.
These strategies cost next to nothing and don’t require any special skills. Use them with sponsored content, paid advertising, or influencer marketing to generate exposure for your next event.
Don’t: Wait until the Last Minute to Promote Your Event
In this digital era, anyone can use social media to cover an event in real-time. But what you do before the event is just as important and requires thorough planning.
If you’re planning a local event, promote it at least two months before. This should be enough time to refine your marketing strategy and handle any changes that may occur.
It’s best to start planning about six months in advance for large-scale events. But if you’re hosting a webinar, workshop, or other small events, give yourself a couple of weeks to handle the marketing part.
Set clear goals for each week or month before the event, and intensify your marketing efforts as you get closer to the event date. Track your engagement rate, number of sign-ups, and other metrics—and tweak your strategy as needed.
Turn Your Next Event into a Success
Now that you know how to promote your next business event, go ahead and come up with a plan. Define and research your target audience, set a marketing budget, and leverage social media to gain exposure.
Last but not least, think outside the box and try different ways to get more attendees. You could offer limited VIP passes, create interactive experiences, or make your event more appealing through gamification.
Depending on your budget, you may also host satellite events or pop-up experiences to generate buzz around the main event. Go one step further and leverage virtual reality to give your guests a feel of what’s to come.