Event marketing is a world unto itself, filled with caterers, rental décor, sometimes even DJ’s, drinks, and usually a great time. Whether your event is the “Go big or go home” type or a more sedate educational seminar, you’ll need to know what you’re getting into before you start. There are many different opportunities for event marketing for IT consultants. Moving headquarters? Celebrating your company’s anniversary? No matter what the occasion, the following 15 tips will make sure your event succeeds.
1. Have a Clear Goal for Your Event
Don’t do anything else until you understand why you’re holding the event. Your goal doesn’t have to be too lofty. If you’re holding an anniversary party to solidify the office culture, that’s just as worthy a goal as holding an educational seminar in order to attract new talent. No matter what your goal is, make sure it’s clear, measurable, and timely. There’s no point in having a goal if you can’t measure it or don’t have a clear unified mindset on what it is.
2. Consider Joining Forces
Partnering up with another company (not a competitor!) when hosting an event can be very helpful. When you work with a partner to market an event, you suddenly have twice the contacts, twice the manpower, and twice the time. It’s a recipe for a successful event.
When searching for a partner, look for an organization that has a good bit of brand awareness. You probably won’t be able to partner with Google, but I wouldn’t suggest partnering with the brand-new store down the road who has been in business for a month either. Find a partner that can bring some firepower to the event.
3. Take Advantage of Emerging Tech
When it comes to event marketing for IT consultants, take advantage of all the amazing emerging technology in your field! Everything from virtual reality to GPS tracking can be used to make your event a true experience. Virtual reality is new enough that if you host an open house where attendees can play a short game using the VR headset, your event is much more likely to generate some buzz.
4. Don’t Be Afraid to Livestream
Using the Instagram and Facebook live streaming capabilities is a great idea both during the event and for promotional purposes before the event. Livestream means that you can chat with potential attendees no matter where they are. The live factor creates a more authentic feel. While you can’t ever have an in-person conversation on a digital medium, live stream probably gets you closest.
5. Automate as Much as Possible
Using automation to streamline the event promotion process can definitely add some bandwidth back onto your plate. Automation is particularly useful when it comes to email. Setting up a workflow that automatically sends out a reminder email the day before or confirms an RSVP can save a lot of time.
6. Promote a Press Release
Writing a press release is a tried and true tool for event marketing for IT consultants. When you send out a press release, make sure it has a story behind it (ideally related to the goal of your event) and isn’t just a generic announcement. Promote your press release carefully, being sure to hit as many channels as possible. Post it on social media, send it out to journalists, add it to your website, and use a distribution service to get the most reach.
7. Create an Experience
The days of people coming to an event just because it’s there are gone. People want an experience. They’re looking for something unique that provides value beyond just free swag or a great talk. In order to attract the most attendees, market how the event will make them feel. Will there be tears? Laughter? Mouth-watering food? A cool ambiance?
8. Get Out into the Community
Yes, we’re a digital marketing company. But it’s always a good idea to take advantage of in-person resources as well for event marketing for IT consultants. If your organization is already active in the community, get out there and market your event. For example, if you’re hosting an educational seminar, attend several small networking events and chat up your event to those around you.
9. Put Some Money into Paid Media
Unfortunately, it’s true. You will get the best results out of your digital advertising through paid media. Run an AdWords campaign that directs clicks to the event landing page. Or boost a few of your favorite social media posts promoting the event. What’s even better is to promote your actual Facebook event in order to receive more ticket sales.
10. Make a Video
Videos are great. You can add them to your landing page, your social posts, your blogs, your website, and more. When creating a video for an event, think of it like a movie trailer. What will your attendees experience? Highlight the best parts.
11. Go Big with Graphics
In this day and age, the world is essentially a picture book. People love to see information-at-a-glance visuals. Creating an eye-catching event logo that can be printed onto various materials or used in digital media is a great way to grab attention. Even better if your graphics provide event information quickly and efficiently. Remember, event marketing for IT consultants is all about providing relevant information in an engaging and exciting way.
12. Think Outside the Box
There’s a reason why flash mobs and challenges go viral. They’re eye-catching, emotion-evoking, and they feel spontaneous. When you’re creating your event marketing strategy for IT consultants, think outside the box. Can you fly a drone through your downtown with a streamer attached that advertises your event? What about dressing up and handing out event flyers at your local tech convention?
13. Be as Interactive as Possible
Digital media is becoming more and more interactive. People can ask questions on a live stream. Answer polls on Instagram stories and use Snapchat geo-filters to tag locations in real-time. Get your audience as involved online as possible. Encourage those Livestream questions, use sliders and emojis and polls on your stories.
14. Design an Event Hashtag
A great way to track the reach of your event is with a specific hashtag. Be creative but clear when designing one for your event. The tech world loves abbreviations and jargon. But unfortunately, #DevOpsConference isn’t very fun or meaningful. But let’s say you’re hosting a cybersecurity conference. #BlackSquidAttack is fun to use, easy to remember, and more likely to be clicked on.
15. Work with an Agency with Experience
There’s a lot of different aspects of event marketing for IT consultants. It can be difficult to work through them all. It’s important to work with an agency that knows what it takes to get an event successfully off the ground. At New North, we have the expertise you need to ensure that your event is a success. Forget the stress, the hassle, and the last-minute crises of event planning. With your help, your event can go as smoothly as possible. If you’re interested in event marketing for IT consultants, reach out to us today.
Veronica is a University of Maryland graduate and passionate equestrian. She focuses on creating audiences on social media and on maximizing the value of public relations to make New North clients famous.