When you are a small business or a startup, it’s all about who you know and how visible your brand is on the market. And while social media makes for a great popularity-boosting tool, nothing can quite beat a face-to-face meeting. In this article, we are presenting some strong reasons why you should seriously consider joining an industry event as soon as possible.
What Makes Events a Good Marketing Strategy?
Bigger events such as conferences, large-scale industry meetups and trade fairs are an exceptional opportunity for connecting with industry professionals. You can find companies who are willing to partner up or do collaborations in the future.
2. Customer Acquisition
With the above-mentioned collaborations, you can expand your audience. Doing a joint promotion with a company from the same niche can bring in their customers to you, and vice versa.
3. Brand Image Strengthening
During these events, you have the opportunity to give your brand and company a friendly face. Showing the people behind the company never fails to boost the appeal, and present your company as approachable and trustworthy.
4. Branded Merchandise
Perhaps the most obvious reason of them all is the benefit of handing out branded merchandise. People love it, it is practical, and it has a longer retention rate than most ads.
What Kind of Events to Attend
This all depends on what kind of business you run, your industry, and company goals. If you wish to present yourself to bigger companies, then see into attending conferences, galas, charity events.
But, if you want primarily to promote to customers, then look into workshops, non-profit charity events, sponsoring sports activities; do local community outreach and so on.
Never lose sight of who your target audience is – sports brands benefit the most from hosting tournaments or local games, or promoting up-and-coming athletes. Fashion brands can hold social media influencer meetups, for example, or hold professional makeup workshops.
Host Your Own Event
However, nothing is stopping you from making your own event. Now more than ever, it’s easy to fund a small-scale event, and even easier to advertise it.
• Have a Clear Goal
When choosing what kind of event to organise, know what its goal is. Are you finding new leads? Getting more investors? Presenting a new product? Have a clear set purpose, so that every new decision you make supports it, and doesn’t hold you back.
• Look Into Community-Driven Spaces
Co-working spaces often lend their offices for weekend workshops, courses and talks, and have their own websites to promote them. If you are financially tight, this can save you money both on space and on marketing.
• Hire a Planner
Hosting events takes a lot of energy, time and resources. If you don’t have enough of even one of those to organise the event on your own, look into finding some help. There are a lot of good, affordable professionals who will take care of the majority, if not all of the demanding tasks. That way, you can focus on your goals for the event.
• Make a Strategy and Stick to It
Plan out everything – from budget constraints and marketing, to food and beverages. You don’t want something to surprise you. In order for an event to be successful, you need to account for everything.
Hosting events is a big responsibility, and a very rewarding experience. Not only will you come out of it with much more knowledge and skill, but your brand will be recognised as engaged and approachable.
Events are a unique way to present your company in a way it hasn’t been seen yet. They can shed new light on who you are and what you do, as well as make your brand more appealing to new and returning customers. Depending on the industry you’re in, the type of event you can attend (or host) can vary. But the most effective ones are considered those that keep a close touch with the customers.
Michael Deane is one of the editors of Qeedle, a small business magazine. When not blogging (or working), he can usually be spotted on the track, doing his laps, or with his nose deep in the latest John Grisham.