Planning a conference or event is no easy task, as any professional event planner will quickly admit. Still, many event planners underestimate the amount of time and work needed to plan a successful event, and often make common mistakes along the way. What you need is a well-thought-out marketing campaign, one that will help you create excitement about your event, engage with your audience before, during and after your event. Below are five common mistakes event planners make that affect the success of their events.
Promoting at The Last Minute
The more you put off advertising and marketing your event, the less time people will have to schedule to attend it. Most media outlets require several weeks or months of prior notice before publishing a news item or advertisement about an event or conference. You will need to allocate at least three to four months lead time to get the word out about your event effectively. This is especially important if you’re relying on magazines, journals or other deadline-driven print media to reach your target audience.
Insufficient Social Media Presence
Socials media is one of the most useful and powerful tools a marketer has available to them today. Social media is used by the majority of adults ages 18–65 in the world. On average, people have 5.54 social media accounts and spend about 116 minutes of their day on these platforms. Promoting events is easier than ever with the help of some carefully planned social media strategies. Use posts that feature useful, attractive, and informative content to help get the word out. Regularly posting to the platform of choice is one of the keys to attracting attention to a brand or event. People who are promoting events can’t afford to ignore the benefits of utilizing social media, primarily because it is FREE!
Depend on a Single Marketing Strategy
One mistake that wastes marketing dollars is depending on a single marketing strategy. Some event planners focus on email marketing, building a website or trying pay-per-click advertising and never try anything else. How do you avoid this mistake?
Create a multi-layer marketing plan. A balanced marketing plan for your event planning business might include an attractive website, a blog about planning great events, an email marketing campaign or local advertising. These are just a few of the ways successful event planners attract new business. Rather than waiting for business to come through your website, you might decide to call on local companies. You may want to host your party to highlight your skills. Use your creativity and planning skills to reach out to your audience in several different ways. Don’t make the mistake of depending on a single marketing method to bring in business.
Not Showing Appreciation to Participants
The chances are that you would like to plan a bigger and better event next year. To do this, it’s crucial to maintain a great relationship with your speaker alumni as well as advertisers, journalists, attendees and venue staff. It is significant to keep track of everyone who supports or participates in your event. Make sure to record their names, phone numbers and email addresses during your event. Afterwards, send brief thank you notes to all that attended or helped build your event. You will be surprised at how this one small step can help lay the foundation for next year’s event planning.
Not Sharing Enough Content
An event provides the perfect stage to create digital content. Whether it’s interviews or a quote from attendees, speaker presentations, or simply a walk around the event space itself, you should always be sharing all of this content with your fans. It would not take you too long to create all of this content. Share posts or tweets from your attendees, or opinions from your speakers. You can pull vendor and sponsor social media posts as well, so that you’re continually sharing content and providing value for your event attendees. These posts also serve as a reminder of how fun and exciting your event was.
The last thing you want is to build fantastic programming, have top-notch speakers and not have any attendees. You don’t have to wait till everything is up before you start sharing. Promote and generate demand as you go. You’ll be surprised, the behind-the-scenes will get you the most impressions!