Is event marketing really necessary? Let’s take a look at the facts. According to the Event Marketing Institute, after attending an in-store event 96% of consumers are inclined to carry out a purchase and 76% of consumers have a more positive impression of the brand. When looking to grow your small business it’s important you look beyond traditional online marketing techniques. Online marketing techniques such as SEO and email marketing campaigns are a great way to build your customer base and target the right individuals. However, in order to take your business to the next level, it’s important to experiment with event marketing. Below we’ve outlined critical steps you can take to ensure you host a successful in-store event.
Step 1: Create a theme
Before you dive head first into planning the perfect in-store event, you want to first establish the theme. Holidays, community events, and major shopping days are a great place to start brainstorming. Creating an event based off a theme helps keep your in-store event focused on what you are trying to accomplish.
Step 2: Develop the event
Once you’ve established the theme of your event, it’s now time to start developing a retail strategy. Some examples of informal events your business can host include an open house or a sidewalk sale during the spring and summer months. Other events that include a lot of planning such as a preview party for VIP customers or a food & wine pairing can be ambitious for beginners, but are guaranteed to enhance brand image. When developing the event, aim to make it exciting and interactive while keeping your theme in focus.
Step 3: Select the right date
Be sure to select the right date and time for your event, keep your target audience in mind. For example if your target audience includes families with small children, you may want to host a kid friendly event midday on the weekend. An in-store event can be planned and prepared effectively, but if it’s not executed at the right time it will not be successful.
Step 4: Launch your in-store event
Get creative when launching your in-store event. Tease your social media following, email list, and in-store shoppers about your upcoming event to stay top-of-mind. The more engaged your customer base is with the brand prior to the event, the more successful it will be. Promotion of the event can either break or make attendance, it’s important to exhaust all networks of communication between your customers. In addition to the initial invitation be sure to remind your customers of the upcoming event. Before, during and after the event, post updates and create ads on social media to build awareness, excitement and attempt to get additional attendees. After the event, keep your customers engaged by thanking those who supported the event (provide pictures and videos of the event).
Event marketing is a powerful way to help your small business grow and thrive. Feel free to reach out if your small business needs assistance with event marketing…We’re always happy to help!
Danielle Foley, President
Foley Marketing Advisors