We can all agree: attendees are the main reason for any event you organize. The more people take part, the more successful your event will be.
To sell as many tickets as possible and minimize unavoidable stress, you need to inspire your event strategy with promotion ideas. Of course, it’s easier when you have big sponsors and can afford expensive ads, but if your budget is limited, you need to be smart and creative.
Read below 11 relatively cheap promotion ideas for your next event:
1. Optimize your event registration website
To provide users with all the necessary information about your event, you need to build an entire website dedicated to your event. This gives (potential) attendees the opportunity to explore and get their questions answered. For an eventprof like you, it’s a place to make excitement around your event. Moreover, a well-optimized event website act as a center for registrations and payments.
So, how to optimize the website?
- Web visitors form an impression of your website in a few seconds. Therefore, you can use tools like Usability Hub’s Five Second Test to better understand the user’s experience.
- Through heat-mapping, you get information like how much time visitors spend on your website and which features are most interesting to them. HotJar can help you with that.
- A/B testing is the process of comparing two versions of web pages to determine which one has better audience engagement. Optimizely allows you to experiment with different design features, design elements like site colors and headlines, and call to action.
2. Brand ambassador
If your budget is not so restricted, you can try with hiring the brand ambassador. That can be online influencers like celebrities, bloggers or YouTube stars. Each of them comes with an audience, so when they post about your event they directly put your message in front of the other people’s eyes. And people trust them.
So, you can spend money to hire a brand ambassador, or you can empower your event guests to be that. Show them you are an eventprof they can rely on, provide them with some Instagrammable moments, and they will gladly share their experiences with their friends and colleagues.
Event attendees can be brand ambassadors, too. We already mentioned Bizzabo. There you have a Ticket Boost feature, a powerful marketing tool, that extends your event reach and brings in more registrations. With Ticket Boost, you encourage attendees to share your event with their social networks in exchange for some benefits: when an attendee registers, they receive a code that lets them provide a discount with their networks. Moreover, sharing the code attendees get money back on their already-purchased ticket with each ticket purchased through their code. All you need is to set the discount amount, activate the feature and encourage attendees to share. Attendees will receive their code as soon as they register and can share it with their fellows straight from the Bizzabo platform.
4. Boost your email marketing game
In the era of social media, you can think email marketing is a little bit old-fashioned, don’t you? Wrong. Don’t underestimate the power of mailing lists. Email marketing is still a more effective way to get customers than social media.
If you already have a list of attendees from a previous event, segment your email lists into categories like ticket type, location, industry, job level, contact role, age, and lead status. You can use online tools for that like Bizzabo’s email platform. However, if you haven’t build your email list yet, start with adding an email subscription button on your event page or site. This way, they’ll be able to receive the latest updates about an event they’re interested in, and you’ll get a way to interact with your guests.
Write them messages with personal subjects, relevant CTAs, and include a variety of tests to see what gets the most responses. You can check out platforms that can help you with email targeting, like MailChimp or Emma.
5. Social media
No promotional campaign would be complete without using social media channels. Therefore, the first thing you need to do is to decide which social media platform will be the most effective for promoting your event.
Here’s how you can use different social channels:
- Facebook: Create a Facebook page where you can share updates about your event. Here you can add different buttons, like “Find tickets” one and interact with your potential attendees. If your budget allows it, you can go with Paid Ads as well, to reach a larger audience.
- Twitter: Great and widely-used social media channel where you can share quick, real-time updates about the event. Create catchy hashtags. Find creative ways to encourage followers to retweet. Through @mentions target influencers. Host a Twitter chat, share live broadcasts.
- LinkedIn: This social media is most important if you’re hosting a business/professional event, with its huge professional user base. In other words, there are people and companies more interested in specific topics. On Linkedin, you can write shareable informative articles, post short videos highlighting things about your event, join groups and promote your event.
- Instagram and Pinterest: These are very visual platforms where you share exclusive images and photos of the current and past events. Instagram stories are very popular nowadays. That’s a clever way to promote your event – showing your followers how’s your team preparing and hints of what they can expect.
- Youtube: Did you know YouTube is the second-biggest search engine in the world after Google? Make sure you take advantage of it by posting exciting videos like sneak peeks, the introduction of team members, sponsors and speakers, trailers about your last year’s event or practical tips.
Social media ticket giveaway
You can use social media channels to orchestrate giveaways. Because the truth is: people like free stuff and to share chances to win something with their friends. With giveaways, you’ll collect more leads, more potential attendees and expose your brand to a different demographic of people. Run some social ads around your giveaway and create a catchy hashtag. But, what kind of giveaway? This is a chance for you to be creative and your tactics will depend on the channel. On Facebook, you can organize “Caption this photo” contest or “Vote for your favorite option”. You can also encourage them to comment on a post. On Twitter, the best way is to focus on a hashtag that mentions your event (for example #COMPETE4PuzzleEventTickets). Take advantage of visual social media channels like Instagram, Snapchat, and Pinterest to encourage people to post creative photos and use your hashtag or logo in it.
Want to learn more about promoting events using social media? Check out our previous blog post.
6. Use professional photography
On every corner of our digital world are high-quality images. So, when arranging promotional material, be sure the first thing people will see is the images itself. They will often estimate your event by its quality. High-quality images imply that an event is worth their attention. Therefore, make sure you hire a professional photographer that properly captures the atmosphere of your event and illustrate what people can expect.
7. Create an infographic
Visual content as infographics is one of the most important ways to increase engagement with your event. It’s effective visual storytelling through information and entertainment.
You can create a fun infographic about last year’s event statistics or pick a topic your attendees are the most interested to hear about! There are online tools that can help you with creating the most creative ones, like Visme or Canva. Visme provides you with everything you need to tell powerful visual stories in the form of engaging presentations, infographics, and other visual content. You can try it for free. Canva is an infographic maker where you simply choose an infographic template and add your information. It has an extensive range of templates and thousands of illustrations—meaning whatever your subject matter, you can bring it to life with this free and easy infographic creator.
Podcasting is also a very creative event promotion idea. It’s an episodic series of digital audio files that a user can download and listen to. Podcasting awareness has increased in recent years and it has become a common way for people and businesses to share their stories with the audience.
Therefore, try launching your podcast with a relevant theme. If you don’t have that much time, you can ask a guest on other industry influencers show to reach the right audience.
9. Geotag your campaigns
It’s hard to reach all the right people just by emailing them. So, before an event, a better way is to use a geo-targeted search. Geotargeting is trending in event marketing. It’s an AdWords feature that lets you target your ads to only appear to customers in a certain location(s) you specify. Your ad budget won’t be affected by wasted clicks from people who are outside your target area, and you’ll increase the chances that the people clicking on your ads are interested to receive your offer.
10. Event community
One of the most important and smart promotion ideas are building branded, online event community related to your event. Creating communities like this, you enable people to connect, network, share ideas, and develop relationships. Furthermore, future attendees can see the level of engagement and many other interested participants, as well. This is how you can increase your brand’s awareness, and attract new people
Making a partnership with other events and event organizers can also help out your event. They all have their audience that is just waiting to be introduced to your event. Ask them to share your announcements from time to time on social media. That’s how you’ll promote your event to their followers and extend your visibility, which finally leads to new registrations and better ticket sales.