The Most Effective Strategy for Event Marketing
If you want to drive people to an event, how do you get them there?
The answer is that there are many ways. Now, that’s not a particularly helpful answer, because it’s not a particularly helpful question, but it’s a start. You can print out flyers, use billboard, engage on social media, run Google/Microsoft ads, call people, pay for radio spots or TV commercials, or incentivize word of mouth communication. Any of those are a way to drive attendance, but you’re not going to do all of them; you don’t have the money or the time or the right resources in place.
The real question you should be asking should take your desired ROI and your current resources into consideration. Really, the most helpful question you could ask would not be “How can I get people to show up at my event?”, but “What’s the most effective way to get people to my event?” Now you’re going somewhere, and the answer you arrive at is going to be more well thought-out than the first.
Here’s the conclusion we’ve arrived at, and it guides all of our decisions when it comes to event marketing for our clients: because people aren’t searching for your event (unless it’s something for kids or something enjoyable for the community, e.g., “fun stuff to do this weekend in Tampa for kids”), you need to put your event in front of them. That means that when it comes to marketing your events, social media is going to be a more powerful tool than Google Ads will be.
The whole reason we specialize in digital marketing because we believe the impact of billboards and flyers isn’t what it used to be, and we have results that show that placing yourself in front of online users is the best way to increase profit. That is why, out of all of the options listed above, your two most effective options will likely always be social media or Google/Microsoft ads. Generally, for any web related goals, driving traffic through PPC marketing (sponsoring ads for certain keywords customers search for) is going to perform highest. We generally don’t recommend using social for lead gen – only for brand reputation management/loyalty. This is because of the drastically different nature of search and social. With search, your customers are already looking for you; with social, they’re just trying to have a good time, and you’re trying to attract them.
Despite our strong belief in PPC, though, when it comes to real events that take place outside of the web, Facebook events are our go-to because we’ve tested it. We know it works.
Here’s a recent example:
A new client of ours, Affordable Medicare Help, relied on Empirical360 to drive people to a seminar about value-based care. Because it was a complex product, it had to be explained in person at the seminar and not over a phone call. We ran Facebook ads to their target demographic, and they collected 35 leads and achieved an 80% show rate.
Use the events feature in Facebook to your advantage, and if you are having an event in the future, remember this tip and pour more of your advertising dollars into social! Contact us to hear more about how we did it for Affordable Medicare Help and how we can do it for you!
Elliot Alicea - Author
Co-Founder of Empirical360
Elliot is a Co-Founder of Empirical 360 and is extremely passionate about creating highly effective marketing campaigns. He places ROI above all else!
Shea Duncan - Author
Director of Content Marketing
Shea is an expert content writer and is a classic literary nerd! She loves writing highly engaging content and has a knack for making it convert!