With the internet becoming a global village, and the digital audiences are finding their communities, event (online or offline) advertising has come to the forefront for engaging with your audiences.
The Five Ws and One H of Event Advertising
The game-plan for Event Advertising comes down to the age-old Five Ws (and One H). Let’s get started:
1. What type of event are you advertising?
To go the whole nine yards, it is important to get your basics right.
- What genre is the event?
- Is it informational? Or educational? Or for pure entertainment?
- What is the length of the event?
- Are there any celebrities or influencers participating/hosting the event
- What is the line-up?
Knowing the basics helps you narrow down your audience and derive your keywords. From naming the event to advertising it, these help as your building blocks.
2. Where is the event – Online/Offline?
Where your event is hosted is integral.
For online events – is it a webinar, or a live face-off between two rappers on Youtube premium, or an online workshop for creative writing? Knowing the platform, hosts and format help you strategize your marketing plan.
For offline events – Is the event a neighborhood stand-up show or a music festival at a hill-station?
Expecting audiences to take time out, purchase a ticket, and be present for your event requires you to know the right things to say, the right place to be seen, and well obviously, make an impression!
3. When is the event?
This is an obvious one; knowing when the event is hosted is important, not only to communicate to the audience but also to strategize your marketing funnel. This marketing funnel varies from event to event. Long-form events like music fests and hiking trips require you to have a longer funnel going up-to 3 months, whereas neighborhood events like Stand-up comedy and/or karaoke nights should have a lead time of up to two weeks.
You should break your funnel down in three stages:
- Introduction Stage (Early bird offers)
- Engagement Stage(Behind the scenes/influencer giveaways)
- Conversion Stage (The last stretch promotional offers)
4. Who is your audience?
This is the most important question for any marketeer, especially for events.
You must create audience segments keeping multiple factors in your stride and target each of them with specific information unique to them. Here are some things you can consider:
- What is your geography for targeting? For a neighborhood event, you might keep a 5km radius, whereas, for a music festival, you might want to extend your targeting to neighboring cities. For a digital event, geography might not be an important criterion at all.
- What is your audience’s behavior online? For a fashion show, you might explore audiences who follow luxury fashion brands online or their past attendance of similar events.
- What are the basic demographics of your audience? Age, gender, spending capacity.
Once you have your audience segments broken down, you go to the next question.
5. Why will they attend your event?
First impressions are important, offline, AND online. How and when your segmented audience interacts with your event ads determines if they will convert or not! This is when CONTENT AND TARGETING comes into play.
Three cliques to remember:
- Targeting is key.
- Re-targeting is the master key.
- Content is king.
How can you channel these three cliques into your strategy –
- Finalize your channels of communication; From social media pages to ad formats to event discovery sites. Each platform rewards different formats and objectives. This is where you use your audience segments and the marketing funnel.
- Once your marketing plan is ready, list down all the design dimensions you need across platforms, and which type of content format is best rewarded. A range of posts, infographics, and videos helps you diversify your content.
- Define your event visual theme; decide the color scheme, fonts, and visual treatment (look and feel) you are most comfortable with. You can also explore Invideo’s pre-existing templates to finalize your visuals.
- Start by making a poster on Invideo. You have the freedom to explore/try different dimensions, colors, fonts, and more.
- With your visual theme in place, you start addressing all the design formats you need to create for your marketing plan. Features like slideshow with music on Invideo let you convert plane-Jane content into fun and engaging videos. These could work as informative videos about the event or quick, quirky listicles about your artists.
6. How will you attract your audience?
The next most important thing to visuals is what you write in them! We mentioned community effect plays a big role in selling your events before, but how can you go about it?
- FOMO and YOLO started out as fads, but now they have seeped into the millennial and GenZ audience as behavioral traits. Strategic peer pressure can help drive more conversions.
- Use the standard 4:1 rule. For every 4 user-generated pieces (influencers/bespoke/past event-goers), release one promotional post. This helps shift your marketing funnel from the introduction to the engagement stage.
- Come up with a fun and contextual hashtag, and overuse it to the T. Use it in polls, post copy, and even as your tagline. With so much content out there, the only way to get in the door is if you keep knocking.
- Along with fun posts, polls, videos, and listicles, you should also invest in BTS (Behind The Scene) content. It helps build association and calls out to past attendees(if any).
- On the internet – MORE IS MORE. Be high on visibility, high in content generation, high on engagement, and in turn, get high conversions.
- Use event sponsors to create content for you. Giveaways via sponsors also increase your audience base and lets FOMO attract larger audiences.
Event advertising is a different ballgame with different rules. There are custom formats and objectives available on multiple platforms for you to explore and harp on. You can use all the tools at your disposal to drive conversions for events with the same force you would plan a performance campaign for any eCommerce brand, but with content playing a dominant role with event advertising, you just have to remember your 5Ws and 1H.
Use your budgets and wits wisely, and get a ‘SOLD OUT’ sign outside your event.