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We’re often asked what the formula is for marketing successful conferences and congresses.  Well there’s no “one-size-fits-all” formula for all events. Clients will often call upon us to provide support in this area. Consequently, and via a lot of trial and a fair amount of error too, we’ve come up with the following event marketing tips that we believe form the basis of a good solid campaign.

Our top ten event marketing tips

  1. Be clear of your audience. Consider who will benefit most from attendance and establish their typical employer, employment level and also their geographical location. Keep them central to every activity that you execute.
  2. Define your message and keep it consistent across all your channels. Keep a list of phrases that you and your stakeholders have agreed because this will keep you appearing consistent (and trustworthy) and on the whole save you time.
  3. Start planning your promotion activity early, preferably 18 months in advance at the latest.
  4. Drip feed highlights of your content throughout your campaign across all your channels. Keep it relevant and exciting.
  5. Invest in channels where you have an established audience and focus on growing them.  E.g. if your audience isn’t on twitter don’t waste time posting, find something that works for you.

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  6. Encourage referrals. Ask attendees and speakers that have already confirmed to spread the word and invite others that they know.
  7. Partnering with key sponsors, partner associations and key thought leaders  will subsequently add credibility to your brand and help spread the word through their distribution networks.
  8. Use a combination of pictures and text in all marketing in order to grab the attention of your audience.
  9. Ensure all your marketing activity is compliant for your industry. For example, if you require the support of medical device suppliers as sponsors keep the “leisure” side of your programme as far away as possible from the content.
  10. Allocate enough resources. For new events this should be around 10% of the income you expect.  For more established events you could consider reducing it.

We hope you find the tips useful.  We’re always happy to offer advice so please do get in contact with us if you’re unsure about anything.

By Rob Eveleigh, MD, Brightelm

First published 06/03/18

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