Once you’ve decided you want to have a business event, there are some preliminary steps before you work on the marketing aspect.
First, you need to make some key decisions about your event:
- Who is your target audience?
- What is the primary goal for your event?
- Are there secondary goals for your event?
Your answers to these questions help determine what type of event you should have and the messaging for your event’s marketing. It’s worth taking the time to determine your audience and goals!
Once you know these answers, set up your marketing plan. As a beneficial tool, I’ll share with you the plan we created for our recent client appreciation event for our local Juice clients.
MARKETING BEFORE THE EVENT
- Send a branded save-the-date email to everyone on our invite list.
- Create a look/design for our event. This is when we established our baseball team name, Creative Juicers, and developed the logo.
- Design the formal invitation. Print and mail this to our invite list.
- Use the look of that formal invite to create our emails.
- Create and send an email a week after the invitations arrive with an RSVP email link.
- Create and send a reminder email a few days before the RSVP date.
- Create and send an email the day before the RSVP date for the last-minute responders.
- If your numbers aren’t what you’d like them to be, create and send a final email after the RSVP date but before you need to provide your final count to the event location rep.
- Develop one more email to all those attending with the event’s schedule and some last reminders.
MARKETING AT THE EVENT
- At the entry of the event area, set up a welcome tent and table with our branded table runner. Have one of our team members man the table and welcome each guest.
- Bonus points:
Those who are not guests attending the game and see our company name.
- Extra bonus points:
Those who are not guests but come to see what we are doing, and then that conversation leads them to become a potential client. Have extra info pieces about Juice ready to hand out to them.
- Bonus points:
- Have goody bags for each recipient. For our event, we did baseball backpacks that included a baseball hot/cold pack, a sticky note pad, a pen, an info piece about Juice (we did one postcard sized), and a box of Cracker Jacks. The backpacks also included the two games we did. Of course, the first four items were all Juice branded.
- Provide a name tag/badge for each guest so everyone in attendance easily can know each person’s name. For ours, we included the Creative Juicers logo on it with the event schedule on the back. We also put the raffle ticket in the back of it.
- Inside the event area, showcase some of our raffle prizes at another Juice table (with another branded table runner). Guests fill out their raffle ticket and drop them in the bucket.
- Stagger games throughout the event.
- Play a game to help everyone mingle. We created the Networking Grid that was a 3×3 grid with different info in each box that represented the guests and their businesses. For instance, there was a block for “has a logo with a tree in it.” The winner of this game won a book on networking.
- Set up a quiz to encourage people to think about our company. We created the Juice Quiz that had 10 questions about Juice … everything from what year the company was started to how many websites we built last year. The winner won the printing for 1,000 business cards.
- Hold a raffle. Our guests filled out their raffle ticket when they arrived, and then toward the end of our event, we drew names. In our case, we had a great assistant – having a child help made it more fun – he selected the raffle ticket and then presented it to the recipient. We had four raffle winners: two Clearwater Threshers baseball gift baskets with tickets to a future game, a $50 gift card to Wild Fields Marketplace, and a gift certificate for a professional headshot from Leandro Gongora. Our thanks to all those companies who helped with our raffle.
- Have a professional photographer take photos at your event. We are blessed to have Annie on our team. In addition to her fabulous work at Juice, she does freelance photography through Annie Mayberry Photography. Thanks to Annie for the great photos!
- Share a few photos on social media while the event is in progress.
MARKETING AFTER THE EVENT
- Create and share an album on Facebook of 15-20 photos from your event. If you didn’t see ours yet, click here.
- Send an email to everyone who attended as well as those who couldn’t make it. Thank those who attended and let the others know they were missed. Include three to five photos from the event. Announce the winner of one of our games (we announced the winner of the Juice Quiz). Link to our Facebook album so people can view all the photos.
- Share more posts throughout the week continuing the excitement.
- Our event was on a Saturday evening, and as mentioned, we posted a few photos to social media that night.
- On Tuesday, we created and shared our event’s album on Facebook.
- On Wednesday, we shared a fun video we captured at the event.
- On Thursday, we wrote and shared this blog post.
- On Friday (tomorrow), our post will highlight some of the businesses that were in attendance.
- Plan how you’ll stay in contact with everyone after the event – will you call them, email them, or meet up with them? Keep the momentum going!
From planning through implementation, this Juice case study shows you a lot of what was involved for our event so you can determine what steps you should take when planning yours.
Let’s juice up your next event. Contact us to get started.