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« March 2010 | Main | May 2010 »

The Experience Must EXCEED that of Your Event Marketing

Event_marketing_value Today I’m going to rant a little on the importance of delivering an extraordinary experience at your event. When it comes to event marketing, there seems to be a gap between advertising promises and attendee expectations. The end result is event attendees who open their wallets, spend their hard earned money, and leave an event disappointed. Yes, I’m a big proponent of using hype and persuasion (ethically) in the marketing of your event.  But you can’t over promise and under deliver.

Before you send out your next advertising campaign, do an objective review of your event marketing . . .

Your Event Advertising and Promotions
Is your event marketing overpromising on the experience your event can actually deliver? Spend some time thinking through the previous question. Look at your advertising and event from an attendee's perspective . . .  If someone were to read your advertising and attend your event – are you going to be able to deliver on all your advertising promises?

If not, or even maybe not, take those points out of your advertising. I’ve seen first hand the problems associated with promising too much in event advertising. It isn’t pretty and is quickly followed by a slew of refund requests.

Continue reading "The Experience Must EXCEED that of Your Event Marketing" »

Event Marketing and Being Persistent with Email

Event_marketing_email_persistence Here is the harsh reality of event marketing with email – most of the people on your list will never open the email you’re sending. It doesn’t matter if you use a double opt-in process or have a completely house grown list. Having managed dozens of different campaigns for a variety of clients, I can tell you that the average email broadcast open rate is BELOW 50%. Low open rates even affect high quality lists.

There are some additional email marketing points to keep in context. Every day we are inundated with more email than we can possibly read.  Even if people want to you’re your email, they might not get around to it. You’re also up against voracious SPAM filters. Don’t take it personally or get discouraged!

My reason for telling you all of the above is to make sure you adopt the right email marketing mindset for your event. In spite of the challenges listed above, I’m still the same guy who believes your house list is your biggest event marketing asset.

Be Creatively Persistent
The key to still winning with low open rates is creative persistence. There is a thin line between being persistent and being a pest. Become proficient at sending the same sales message to your list multiple times. Please note: I didn’t say send the same exact email multiple times. Get good at rewriting emails that convey the same sales message. By sending multiple messages you're going to increase the chances of people actually reading your email.

Case Study
Last year I wrote an email marketing sequence that nudged people to buy tickets almost 60 days before the event. The first campaign email setup the ticket discount and built anticipation for the event with video. The next three emails were focused on sales.  Each sales email was written differently, yet emphasized the limited number of tickets available. As tickets were purchased we adjusted the available number of tickets accordingly. Ticket sales peaked at the beginning and at the end of the promotion. Over 60% of the total advance ticket sales came after the second email. The end result was over $20,210 in gross ticket sales, 58 days before the event.

Look at your event marketing with email as a multi-step process, not a one off event. You can’t expect to send one email and get everyone on your list to buy. Be prepared for opt-outs. “If you aren’t getting opt-outs, you aren’t selling hard enough.” – John Carlton. Get good at sending the same sales message to your event email list multiple times without annoying them.

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