You’ve decided an event is great way to activate your audience, but how do you go about crafting an event that engages and also delivers against your objectives?
I encourage all my clients to carefully consider 6 main areas to help answer that question.
1. Start by knowing your audience
Who are they, how do they communicate, what appeals to them, what experiences engage them? Answering these questions will assist you in defining the type and format of an event to appeal to your audience.
2. Articulate about your objectives
Are you wanting to take a product to market, promote a region, establish business connections, celebrate achievements or communicate a strategic message? Articulating why you’re bringing an event into your marketing mix and being clear on the outcomes you are seeking will help you produce measureable outcomes from your event.
3. Shape your event experience carefully
Now that you have your audience in mind and clear objectives, you can start to create your event. Whether it’s a festival, a boardroom lunch, an outdoor promotion or an experimental marketing stunt, you can continually test your thinking by asking – will that idea work with my audience? If you can’t answer this question positively then it’s probably an element that’s best left out of the mix.
4. Tonality and Totality matter
To properly engage and promote your event, it’s important to focus on the “tonality” and “totality” of the event experience. The “tonality” of your communications sets the expectations of the event you are going to deliver. The “totality” is the overall event experience and being consistent in everything you do is essential to achieving this. For example, if you’re sending a big bold and brassy invitation, you’ll want to be sure you deliver an event experience that backs this up.
Every piece of correspondence and every interaction plays a role. Get it right and the event you create will effortlessly reinforce what you are trying to say.
5. Deliver the Event Experience
It’s imperative in delivering events to put yourself in the shoes of your audience and consider how they think.
If there is a long wait or your event location is hard to find, you’ll have to work really hard to overcome the negative sentiment that your guests experienced from a tricky arrival. If you anticipate this, simple measures like starting an entertainment experience in the car-park makes waiting times appear shorter.
It’s also an imperative that you strike the balance at all events between what you’re wanting to say and how willing the audience is to receive that message. Find the balance between great content and messaging and leave time for the audience to digest it.
6. Measuring your success
The better the event experience, the faster your goodwill will grow, but how do you know if your event works? We suggested earlier that you clearly articulate your objectives and we also recommend building measurement points into your event to ascertain how well your event works. Some objectives are straight forward to capture, i.e. growth in ticket sales. More sophisticated campaigns may drive customers to visit a retail outlet or use entry/exit research to capture attitudes to a new product. Social media can be woven into events to capture broader feedback or create new followers that become your customers. However you seek to review the success of your event, business intelligence and data will always be more useful than opinions.
About the Author:-
Kathryn is an experienced below-the-line marketing professional with a passion for events. Based in Adelaide, South Australia, Kathryn is the principal of Lumino Events www.luminoevents.com.au