Three Steps to Successful Event Marketing

Posted on October 14, 2014. Filed under: Business, Business Events, Event Marketing, Marketing, Small Business | Tags: , , , , , , , |

Three Steps to Successful Event Marketing
Having consistent events for your business is a great marketing strategy.  Events are a great way for people to get to know you, like you, and trust you, which we all know is the key to getting more business.   However, putting on events is not always an easy task.  The hardest thing about events is getting people to attend, so this article goes through the 3 steps to successfully market your next event.

Step 1-  Pre-Event

Pre-event is the planning phase which involves all the activities that go into planning an event up until the day that the event occurs.  The planning phase should include the following key elements:

  1. Audience–  who is the event intended for?  Just like all marketing strategies, the first step is to understand who you are trying to reach which includes the usual demographics and the even more important psychographics of your audience.  The demographics covers the age, gender, income level, etc. while the psychographics is going to cover lifestyle, beliefs, attitudes, etc.
  2. Purpose–  What is the goal of the event?  Is the event mainly to get your name and brand out there so you can create brand awareness,  is it to get sales,  is it to grow your prospect list, is it to show appreciate to your customers, is it to educate the market on your industry, etc.  There are so many reasons to have an event, and it is important that you are clear on the specific reason you are having the event.
  3. Promotion–  How are you going to get the word out about your event?  Are you going to use traditional advertising channels like radio, TV, newspaper, etc., or are you going to use new media like social media, blogs, email, etc., or a combination of both forms of media?  List all the ways you are going to promote the event and how often you are going promote it up until the day of the event.
  4. Budget–  It is important to establish a budget for the event.  How much are you willing to spend on the promotion of the event and the actual event itself?  No matter how big or small of an event you are planning, it is important for you to set an overall budget for the event.

Step 2-  During the Event

The marketing of the event does not end while the event is taking place, in fact, some of the best promotion can be done at the event.  Some ways that you can promote during the event include:

  1. Live Stream–  This has become popular for larger events.  With the technology available to be able to broadcast the event around the world, many people are offering free or paid livestreams for people to be able to have access to the event virtually.  This helps to amplify your event goal, because not only will you be reaching the people who attend your event in person, but you can also reach people anywhere in the world.  It goes back to the purpose of your event.  If a livestream will help you reach your overall goal and it is in your event budget, then it may be something to consider.
  2. Social Media–  Social Media and Social Networks like Twitter and Instagram are great to promote not only before the event, but also during the event because it is a way for people who are at the event to connect, and also people who are not at the event to get some of the information presented, and to see some of the activity.  The best way to be effective on social networks is to create a specific hashtag (#) that can be used throughout the event.  This allows for easy grouping and visibility on the network when it comes to conversations and pictures about the event.  Again it is another way to amplify the event to other people who may not be in attendance.

Step 3-  Post-Event

The marketing of the event does not end after the event.  Depending on how often you will be having the event or having other events for your business, the end of the event is a great way to market the next event.

  1. Sign-ups–  Be sure to promote the next event, and whenever possible even encourage individuals to sign-up for the next event on the spot.  That helps you to secure your audience for your next event.
  2. Feedback–  Getting feedback after an event is not only great research on how you can improve your next event, but it also shows your attendees that you care about the events and their feedback is valuable.  Event surveys are a great way to get this type of feedback and the information that you receive from the attendees can help you with the creation and promotion of the next event
  3. Appreciation–  Showing your attendees that you appreciated their attendance is also a great post-event activity.  This could be in the form of an email or a thank you card.  Depending on the size and scope of your event, you would need to decide what is the most appropriate way for you to show your attendees appreciation.

Do you have consistent events to promote your business?  If so, what do you include in your pre-event, during event, and post event planning?

 

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The Secret to Successful Email Marketing Campaigns

Posted on July 18, 2014. Filed under: Business, Email Marketing, Email Results, Marketing | Tags: , , , , , , |

The Secret to Successful Email Marketing CampaignsEmail Marketing should be a key element in your online marketing mix, but many business owners struggle to get success from their email marketing efforts, they send out enewsletters month after month, year after year, and get no real results.  However, on the other side of the coin other businesses seem to get AMAZING success from their email marketing campaigns.  We’ve heard stories of people sending out an email campaign and getting sooo many sales or inquiries within hours or even minutes of sending the email.  So what is the BIG secret in why some people are successful and others are not?  The answer is…….planning your email marketing campaigns, knowing your audience and providing the right content for your audience!

In order to be successful with email marketing, you have to know your audience (your target market).  The most successful email marketing campaigns are the ones in which the content provided is exactly what their audience needs and wants.  So how can you make sure your email marketing campaigns are successful?  Here are 6 ways to make sure you have successful email marketing campaigns:

  1. Create an email marketing plan–  Your email marketing plan needs to cover what, when, who, and how.  What type of emails are you going to send (i.e. enewsletters, autoresponders, stand-alone, drip campaigns, etc.)?  When are you are going to send out your emails  (Mondays, Tuesdays, 10:00 am, 2:00 pm etc.)?  Who are going to send the email to (customers, clients, prospects, leads, referrals, etc.), and how often you are going to send the emails (monthly, weekly, daily, etc.)?  Putting a plan together helps you to be clear on what you want to do with your email marketing and helps you to focus on getting the results.
  2. Know your target audience–  This is important for every aspect of your marketing and just as relevant for email marketing.  You have to understand the needs of your audience.  This is the only way that you will be able to accomplish #3 on this list, so take the time to know the specific demographics (age, gender, race, etc.) of your target market.  Be specific as possible.  The idea that your services or products is for everyone is the worst way to market your business and you will never be able to create effective marketing campaigns much less email marketing campaigns.  You also have to understand your target market’s psychographics (attitudes, tastes, preferences).  The more clear you are about these things the better your email marketing campaigns will be.
  3. Segment your email list  Making sure you have several email lists that are segmented based on type of person and or interests is a great way to segment your list. For example you should have a separate list for your customers/clients and then another list for your prospects.  That way you can target your emails specifically to promotions geared towards customers and then you can create another campaign geared towards prospects.  Statistics show that your customer list is your most valuable and profitable list because they have already purchased from your company (and hopefully had a good experience) and therefore you have a higher chance of getting repeat business from your current customers.  You want to treat this list differently than you would prospects who have not purchased from you yet.  On the other hand, it is also important to segment your list based on product or service purchased (or person’s interest).  For example, if a person purchased product or service A from you they may have different needs than someone who purchased product or service B from you, so differentiating them in your list can make a big difference in your marketing results.
  4. Create great content for each specific segment  Having great content is obvious, but having great content that serves your target audience is priceless.  For example if you have a list of people who opted in to receive email from you that are interested in service A, make sure that you are sending out a lot of relevant information about service A.  Information that people will find useful and interesting.  Sending out an email with all your services and products and being salesy does not serve your market.  You want to think how can I be the most helpful and engaging to my readers.  Studies show that having an informative blog post in your email and having people click a link to read more of the post is a great way to engage your audience.  Videos also work well in emails.  Having a screenshot of the video and then people can click on the image and/or a link to view the video is also a good audience engaging technique.
  5. Have a Strong Call To Action–  You want to direct people on what they should do.  Do  you want them to “call and make an appointment”, “click to learn more”, “stop by and visit”, etc.  Using strong calls to actions in your email marketing help your readers to take the necessary action.
  6. Be Consistent–  I always stress the importance of consistency when it comes to email marketing.  Make sure that you send out your email campaigns on a consistent basis.  If you don’t, people will forget about you and your company.  Consistency also helps for you to stay top of mind with your customer and prospects.  You can even set the expectation of frequency upfront by saying. “We will be sending you a weekly newsletter” or “We will be sending you a daily digest”, etc.  that way people already know when they sign-up how often they should expect to receive communication from you.  Then it will be up to you to consistently deliver on that expectation.

Are you using these strategies in your email marketing?  If not, what strategies would you add for successful email marketing campaigns?

Be sure to download this checklist with 21 tips on how to get amazing success with email marketing!  (limited time only)

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How do you differentiate your small business from all of the rest?

Posted on December 17, 2013. Filed under: Business, Business Development, Business Planning, Marketing, Small Business | Tags: , , , , |

Your small business is probably not the only business in the world that does what you do, so how do you differentiate your company from all of the other companies out there?  The answer can be found in identify your unique selling proposition (usp). These are the things that make you and/or your company different, but sometimes it can be difficult to figure out what your unique selling proposition is?  Follow these three tips to help you to differentiate yourself from the rest of the market:

  1. KNOW YOUR INDUSTRY–  the first step is to know what is going on in your industry.  What is the latest and greatest thing out there.  What changes have you seen in your industry?  What has remained the same in your industry?  How can you be an innovator within your industry?  You want to make sure your company is doing things differently, don’t go with the flow, go against it!  Most of the major brands out there became successful, by doing it differently or offering it in a different way.  Apple did not get to be such a major brand by following the crowd and doing it the same way as the others in their industry, no Apple became a super brand by being innovative!
  2. KNOW YOUR COMPETITORS–  It helps to  know what your competitors are doing, so you can be aware of what they are offering and how you can offer it in a better way.  Nobody really likes to snoop around (well maybe some people do), but it helps to secretly shop your competitors and get to experience the way they do business.  Sam Walton the founder of WalMart was known to be obsessed with his competitors, he wanted to know what they were doing, how they were doing it, when they were doing it, etc. so he could do it better!
  3. KNOW YOUR AUDIENCE–  I know I probably say this in almost every post, but knowing your target market inside and out is really key in knowing the needs of your customers, and identifying what makes your product or service the ideal solution for your customer.  McDonald knew that people wanted food quickly.  They did not plan to be the best burger and fries out there, but created a system that offered reasonably good food (I know that is debatable)  in a very fast way, which is what the consumers wanted!

So if you strive to be innovative, to do things differently than your competitors, and to know the needs of your audience, you are on the path to differentiate yourself from the rest of the market and becoming a successful brand!

What ways do you use to differentiate your small business?

 

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