Corporate events are a great opportunity for business leaders to network, reach new customers and showcase the products or services they have. It takes a real team effort to put on or attend a function and typically it requires collaboration across different departments and leadership roles to make happen.
As such, it’s vital that you market your event right, otherwise it can be a damp squib and a waste of resources. And, for all of the effort that goes into corporate conventions, it would be a terrible shame if you didn’t get people showing up so follow these digital marketing practices to help spread the word.
How does digital marketing impact event organisation?
Whether you’re organising a conference, festival or workshop, spreading the word about your event is key to its success. Digital marketing tools offer event organisers valuable ways to build awareness, engage potential attendees and drive ticket sales. With some time and effort you can effectively use online marketing channels to ensure your event is a success.
Email marketing is one of the most effective ways to spread the word about your event.
By sending engaging and enticing emails to your subscriber list and attendees from previous events, you can draw attention to your upcoming event. You can also keep people up to date with details, offer an early bird discount or special offer exclusive to email subscribers to encourage people to buy tickets sooner rather than later. Personalising each email with the recipient’s name also makes a big impact.
You may want to send reminder emails closer to the date to prompt anyone who has not yet purchased to do so before prices increase or tickets sell out. Keep your content lighthearted, friendly and not too salesy in tone. Provide all the key information but focus on building excitement and highlighting the benefits of attendance.
Use your website and words
A dedicated event page on your website acts as a hub for all information about your event. Optimise your page to rank well in search engines as many people will search online to find events in their industry. Choose a page title, URL and headings that include your most important keywords, such as the event name, location and date.
Images, videos and graphics help to bring the page to life and convey the experience people can expect on the day or highlight the success of any previous events you hosted. Link to your ticket provider or ticket page prominently so people can easily buy tickets to boost conversions. A great idea for your ticket page is to embed your ticketing widget on that page, so that buyers don’t have to leave your website to buy their tickets.
Include keyword-rich but natural-sounding copy on the page covering all the key details like schedule, venue and travel information and speaker bios. Keep your page content concise but make sure it answers any questions people may have about attending. Update the page regularly in the lead up to your event with the latest news, offers or competition information.
For location-specific events, creating dedicated pages on your website that target local audiences is crucial. Local landing pages optimised for search engine visibility enable you to rank well for searches related to your event venue or destination.
Include your location prominently in page titles, headings and copy. For example, an ‘Events in Birmingham’ or ‘Conferences at The ICC London’ page. Link to these location-centric pages from your main website and social media. Promote them through local social groups and paid advertising in nearby areas and online directories. If you organise events in different locations and different countries, set-up your online ticketing widget in the local language.
Pay-per-click (PPC) adverts
Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, like Google Ads, is a way to promote your event to new audiences and drive traffic to your site. PPC involves bidding on relevant keywords like your event name, location or industry to appear at the top of search results pages. Then, when someone clicks your ad, they’re directed to your website.
PPC is ideal for promoting your event in the final weeks before it’s due to take place. When attendance or ticket sales are looking low, a short-term PPC strategy can give a valuable boost. While PPC does cost money, it generates high-quality website traffic and can drive new ticket sales.
Some tips for PPC success:
- Focus your budget on peak times when most people will search for event information
- Set a maximum cost-per-click that is affordable and reasonable
- Only run PPC ads for a few weeks before your function to maximise impact
- Track conversions from PPC to see the revenue gained from your ad spend
- Refine and improve your PPC campaigns over time based on performance
Virtual events and live streaming
Virtual talks, live streams, webinars and podcasts are a great way to generate hype around your event and give people a taste of what to expect. Broadcasting online content related to your event topic helps grow your audience, increase anticipation and convert some virtual attendees into ticket buyers for your live event.
Promote any online events or live streams you’re running via email, social media and your website and, furthermore, build up excitement by posting teasers and trailers ahead of time. On the day, share the link for people to tune in and watch live and ensure you post the recording afterwards to maximise views.
Some ideas for online event content include:
- Live interviews or Q&A sessions with your speakers or event organisers
- A preview of a talk or demonstration that will feature at your live event
- Discussing a trending topic or issue related to your industry or event theme
- Sharing knowledge and expertise through how-to sessions, panel discussions or case studies
- Providing a behind-the-scenes look at your event planning and preparation
Social media metrics
Used well, social media platforms like LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram can generate hype, raise awareness and drive new ticket sales through engaging with your target audience. You can engage with people by asking questions and encouraging comments regarding your brand or event. Use popular hashtags to make your event more discoverable to people.
Track your social media metrics to see which posts get the most likes, shares and clicks. Then replicate that kind of content to keep people engaged. You may want to boost your best-performing posts or run social media ads to reach new audiences.
In the weeks leading up to your event, increase your social media frequency to build last-minute anticipation. After the event, post highlights reels and images to maintain engagement for your next event.
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