Great content has been planned; outstanding speakers have been lined up; a wonderful locations has been selected. Sounds like a successful conference-yes, but only if you have attendees! A critical part of any conference is the marketing or promotion of the conference. Conference marketing cannot be done the same way year after year – new and innovative methods need to be tried. To reach potential attendance, a clear message, memorable images, and a reason to attend must be provided.
Product strategies. How will you design, package and add value to the product. When an organization introduces a conference into a market they must ask themselves a number of questions. Who is the conference aimed at? What benefit will customers expect? How does the association plan to position the conference within the market? What differential advantage will the conference offer over their competitors?Promotion:Where and when can you get across your marketing messages to your target market? Promotion has four distinct elements: advertising, public relations, personal selling and sales promotion. A certain amount of crossover occurs when promotion uses the four principal elements together, which is common. Advertising covers any communication that is paid for, from commercials, radio and Internet adverts through print media and billboards. Public relations are where the communication is not directly paid for and includes press releases, sponsorship deals, exhibitions, conferences, seminars or trade fairs and events. Word of mouth is any apparently informal communication about the product by ordinary individuals, satisfied customers or people specifically engaged to create word of mouth momentum
AIDA is a communication model which can be used by associations to aid in selling their conference or products. AIDA is an Acronym for Attention, Interest, Desire, Action.. When a conference is launched the first goal is to grab attention. Think, how can an organization use its skills to do this? Use well-known personalities or members to promote the conference? Once you grab attention how can you hold Interest, through promoting features, clearly stating the benefit the conference has to offer? The third stage is desire, how can you make the conference desirable to the potential attendee – a must attend event? By demonstrating it? The final stage is the purchase action, if the association has been successful with its strategy then the target customer should register for the event.
Utility—the basic tools needed to navigate and participate in the event including food and beverage, registration, signage, charging stations, Wi-Fi, maps, transportation, exhibitor directories, conference agendas, floor plans, or ADA accommodations. Justification—the information needed to justify the ROI of time and resources expended to attend the show including QR codes, digital tote bags, session speakers, programming, show features, content capture devices, and post-show content accessConnection—the human and digital connection needed to communicate and share the experience with others through such channels as matchmaking applications, social media, sporting events (golf tournaments, fun runs, etc.), alternative conference architectures (unconferences, Conferences that Work, etc.) and games (trivia, SCVNGR hunts, opportunities to win badges). Recognition— Attendees want to be heard and recognized. When you give them that opportunity, they will want to attend AGAIN.Understanding—This is not about business. It’s about self. If you give them something that changes their lives, they will definitely want to attend AGAIN.The Takeaway: If you select programming, event features, and technology that fulfills attendees’ needs at each level (technology such as mobile could compete at several levels simultaneously), they will feel as if they have fully experienced your event
Create an online (accessible, searchable) resource library of exhibitor white papers, ebooks, case studies, how-to articles, and video tutorials.Appoint a content marketing officer to sift through exhibitor content and re-shape the resources to meet the needs of the audience.Make all of the content shareable on social media channels.Stop selling the event and start sharing the information.Create a steady (daily) flow of content accessible through one portal—the organization’s blog.Offer excellent content.Ask exhibitors to guest blog.Develop an editorial calendar that covers content from all of the market segments the show covers.Send frequent emails of curated exhibitor content (links back to the show blog) to an opt-in list of recipients.Highlight and promote content that exhibitors have created and posted on their own websites through the show blog.Take the content marketing to the trade show floor, as Jeff Hurt suggests, by asking exhibitors to demonstrate how they are innovators and providing more informal education on site.
MicrositesFor those unfamiliar with the term, a microsite is simply a small website, containing only about five to 10 pages. Events management is a great example of when to use microsites because it can be quite niche and specific.Microsites allow you to gather all the information about a particular event in one place, away from other news and information. You can direct your delegates to one location, where they can find all your promotional materials (flyers, posters, emails, etc.).A microsite also gives you the opportunity to manage your entire event. You can integrate ticket-buying and delegate-management systems into your site. The site can be used to post news, information, comments, and testimonials during and following the event.However, building and maintaining effective microsites take time and effort. You need to make sure that you've got quality content on there that will engage your audience. You also need to ensure that you update the microsite leading up to your event. Don't just build it and hope they will come.You also need to consider search engine optimization (SEO). Ideally, you'd like your microsite to rank well in search engines; however, because it's a new, small site, it will be going up against much larger, older sites.If you've got the time to devote to building and maintaining one, a microsite can be a great means of promoting your event. But if all your time is taken up by organizing the event itself, you might want to try a promotional channel that is slightly less demanding and less time-consuming, such as building a promotional page on your website.
A tag cloud (word cloud, or weighted list in visual design) is a visual representation for text data, typically used to depict keyword metadata (tags) on websites, or to visualize free form text. Tags are usually single words, and the importance of each tag is shown with font size or color. This format is useful for quickly perceiving the most prominent terms and for locating a term alphabetically to determine its relative prominence. When used as website navigation aids, the terms are hyperlinked to items associated with the tag.
As with much technology related, the explosion of social media options for promoting events is nearly overwhelming. It’s not like when I started 20+ years ago and a mailed brochure was all it took. Today you have to like it, pin it, tweet it and post it – just to get started. But while you’re building your social strategy – by whatever channels are best for your audience – keep these thoughts in mind. Be a resource. Social media is not like a direct mail promotion. Ideally, you want to be contributing to a conversation, not hawking your wares. Offer tips from speakers as a way to help your audience and promote your event at the same time.Be genuine. Don’t try to disguise your promotion. If you really believe I’ll benefit from your event, tell me about it. But don’t lure me to your site with a headline and have me find it’s the headline to a sales brochure.Build community. Building year-round communities makes event promotion a year-round activity – and a great way to crowdsource content, too.Peer promotion. Nothing spreads the word about an event faster than a social network. Tweeters, bloggers and industry evangelists become your unpaid marketing team. Use this to your advantage with the planned release of key pieces of event information. (But remember points 1 and 2 above.)Key influencers. Most social networks are very influenced by handful of “rock stars.” What these people do and say matters. It’s important for you to know and involve these rock stars in your event.Use everything. YouTube, LinkedIn, Facebook, Flickr, Pinterest, etc. It gives potential attendees the feeling that there are dynamic, interesting things about your event happening all the time, everywhere.
tweet it out, encourage others to tweet that they are attending when they register.share content from and by the panelists and speakers who will be at the event.talk about attendees who will be coming and where they are coming from.provide an official #hashtag to use, and then mention it – repeatedly – on stage.have large display screens throughout the event facility displaying all tweets that use the official #hashtag. many great apps for this.explain they can text “join to 40404” to start a Twitter acct – they can even“fast follow” any Twitter acct by texting “follow pistachio” to 40404thank attendees, connect them to each other as much as possible, and keep the channel open.good ideas for content between events – link to stuff being done byattendees or speakers, RT attendees, write about progress towards nextyear, tweet out photos, videos & blog coverage of the eventthank people for coming, send out links to the videos and presentations fromthe event, keep folks engaged between events with good blog contentremind people about staying in touch with each other, etc.
Real-time marketing demonstrably works -- not just in social channels, but across the marketing spectrum. A recent GolinHarris study finds real-time not only positively impacts standard marketing goals -- word-of-mouth, attention, preference, likelihood to try or buy -- but it also turbocharges other marketing initiatives, including paid and owned media effectiveness.
The key word in that last sentence is measurable. Numbers tell us a concrete story. What exactly are you measuring? In what increments? During what time period? While you may think “I want my attendees to interact with my speakers more,” how will you judge if this is happening, and if it is happening successfully?Here’s an example of the importance of measurable, concrete goals: Let’s say that you want to increase the open rate on your event marketing emails. If you increased your email open rate by 0.005%, would that feel like you’d really met your goal? Creating realistic and measurable goals has to be a top priority for your event and organization.While the goals for every event will be different, I wanted to help you get started with four of our favorite attendee engagement goals.1. Increase traffic to your event website by 25% in a 30-day time period – You can’t measure this without knowing your starting point, so if you’re not currently tracking website statistics, hop to it! Google Analytics is a powerful, free tool.2. Grow event community adoption rates from 70%-80% over a two year period – We recommend comparing a community for the same event. As you approach year two, be sure to note what you’re doing differently to try and grow those numbers.3. Increase the number of session feedback survey completions by 15% – This can be slightly harder to measure if you’re gathering data from paper surveys. A tool like Survey Monkey can simplify the recording and measurement process.4. Increase your event marketing email open rate by 1% per email – Again, tracking is essential here. Consider sending your marketing emails through a program like MailChimp that allows you to easily segment, target, A/B test and track things like open and click through rates.The above are simply meant to be suggestions and ideas as you shape your own event’s attendee engagement goals. Remember to measure! I touched briefly on some tools above but stay tuned for a follow up post on more suggested tools for attendee engagement throughout your event’s life cycle.Reprinted with permission from the Regonline Product Blog.What are you measuring? Did you have a strategy in place that you’re measuring against, or are you just looking for “improvement?” Would love to see some ideas here.Tara Barnes (@PathableTara) is the Marketing Director for Pathable, Inc. In addition to a background in event planning/management, Tara has extensive experience in marketing, social media, communications and public relations strategy.
Tsae conf attendance presentation 201210
Drive For Success:Getting Attendance at Your Next MeetingPresented by Linda Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno #EdDay25 October 17, 2012
Presentation Takeaways Create the appropriate blend of new and legacy marketing initiatives every year Identify new marketing methods to drive conference attendance Understand why marketing pieces must include memorable images, a clear message, and a reason to attendLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Conference Marketing • Outstanding Speakers • Wonderful Location • Attendees????Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Marketing 101: The 4 P’sLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Communication Model: AIDA Attention Interest Desire ACTIONLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
A–I–D–A Attention: you only have a few seconds – Grab Their Attention! Interest: show the need (reason) your member has for your association Desire: show how your association can solve their problem Action: Ask for immediate action – tell them exactly what you want them to do and provide enough information for them to take the next step. Make the action as easy as possible!Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
I was thinking a lot about what makes people really want/crave/anticipate live events. Yes, it’s the networking and the opportunity for education, the oft-cited reasons given by event organizers. But, I felt there was more to itMichelle Bruno: Posted on than that. After all, we canforkintheroadblog.com: network and get informationThe Attendee Hierarchy of Needs: A online.Framework for Making Better EventPlanning Decisions Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno #EdDay25
Awareness Strategy Need to establish YOUR conference in the mind of potential attendees Share of Database Unrealized Awareness Accessible Awareness Share of Aware Mind Conference Awareness Mutual Awareness Not AwareLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno #EdDay25
trade show organizers can begin to think about new ways to market their events and build their communities by becoming content curators, viewing their exhibitors as content producers, and positioning the live event as the “product” being offered for sale. Michelle Bruno commenting on Jeff Hurt’s blog Midcourse Correction’s discussion of leveraging content marketing; her comments are at forkintheroadblog.comLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno #EdDay25
What’s The Most Important? The List The Offer The Format The Follow-Up The AnalysisLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
How Have YOU Been Reaching Your Audience?Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
IDEAS Speaker Blogs Past Attendee Blogs Testimonials Direct Mail Twitter Hashtag Discussion YouTubeLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
How About Some Different Ideas? Viral Marketing – Word-of-Mouth Marketing Use of Humor or Cuteness Include the YOU word Target buyers of products & services Add tag line to email from staff – but you need to create it for them Offer Coupons – 10% off purchase of association product PURLS and QR codesLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
More Ideas: List who is already registered for event by area or name Ask a speaker to create a 30 second beginning of their presentation and post on YouTube with link from you Reward those who tweet, Facebook, or LinkedIn your conference Use a reminder as part of your shopping cart Post your event on CVB and Chamber pages – ask them to help promote. Request a letter from the Mayor or Governor ASK sponsors and exhibitors to include information on their web site and calendarLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Conference MicrositeLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
How About A Few More: Staff post meeting on their social media sites – you never know who they might reach – but make it easy for them by providing the information and hyperlink already created Board and conference planning committee should promote on their social media sites and websites Provide chapters with easy to implement promotional material FAX and mail are still effective promotional toolsLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Use a TAG CLOUD on your websiteLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Want to Create A Cloud? Tagxedo turns words - famous speeches, news articles, slogans and themes, even your love letters - into a visually stunning word cloud.Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Build Your Social Strategy Use everything. YouTube, LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, etc Be a resource Be genuine Build community Peer Promotion Key Influencers Posted by Donna on http://www.engage365.org/2012/10/09/event-attendance-promotion-and-social-channels/Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Fiverr.com: Hilarious and Fun! Create a simple banner ad Write a customized limerick Make a tough decision for you Tweet your message to thousands of followers Record a voice over in a native British accent Add music to your video Create a QR CodeLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Laura Fitton, aka @pistachio tweet it out, encourage others to tweet that they are attending when they register. provide an official #hashtag to use, and then mention it – repeatedly – on stage, in conference emails, etc. have large display screens throughout the event facility displaying all tweets that use the official #hashtag. many great apps for this. explain they can text “join to 40404” to start a Twitter acct – they can even “fast follow” any Twitter acct by texting “followlindachreno” to 40404Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
MOBILE APPS: Are they the solution? Whom Do You Serve? What Do Attendees Want In Their Conference App? The Road to Monetization Your Mobile App Roll-Out & Marketing Plan Driving Downloads & Raving Fans Shifting Eyeballs and Ad Revenues from Print to Digital Free ebook from CrowdCompass http://www.crowdcompass.com/Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
New Real-time Marketing Work Cycle http://blog.hubspot.com/Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Set Achievable Goals for Event MUST BE MEASURABLE Increase traffic to your event website by 25% in a 30 day period Grow event community adoption rates from 70% to 80% over a two year period Increase the number of session feedback survey completion by 15% Increase event marketing email open rate by 1% per email Tara Barnes (@PathableTara) is the Marketing Director for Pathable, IncLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
BOTTOM LINE: How Do You Convince the Potential Attendee that they MUST attend your conference? Show them the Value Show them theCostif they don’t attendLinda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Good Websites or Apps Animoto: Turn your photos, video clips, and music into stunning video masterpieces to share with everyone. Fast, free, and shockingly easy! Signupgenius: FREE online tool for creating and managing group sign up lists and forms. Create public or private sign up sheets to schedule events Issuu: mission to empower individuals, companies, and institutions to publish their documents across all digital platforms.Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12
QUESTIONS????? What is it you really want to know?Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno 10/15/12 #EdDay25
Thank you for attending my session! Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM Follow me on Twitter @lindachreno Lchreno@me.com #EdDay25Linda S. Chreno, CAE, IOM @lindachreno