Tips for Promoting Your Digital Marketing Event

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Estimated reading time: 6 minutes, 58 seconds

event-audienceAre you feeling inspired by all the talk of digital marketing events in 2016? Do you now want to organise your own? If you’re about to launch your first big event, or thinking of arranging a meet-up in your area for like-minded marketers, pay attention.

We’ve put together some tips from the experts for how to promote your event.

Know Your Audience

Dom-Moriarty“We think the trick to a successful event, like with most forms of marketing, is targeting. There aren’t many agencies in South West London, but as most of us live nearby we don’t get to as many events as those living or working in Central London or the East End. This presented a gap in the market for all digital folk living in the South West of the city, so we just needed to get the word out.

We utilised our own social media community and reached out to people we have met in the industry, building a website for the event and integrating Eventbrite to make it easy to sign up. Our events are all about people being people, no agendas or note-taking, and that’s been crucial to our growth so far. We had about 30 people at our first event but from that moment on, it became all about word of mouth”

Dom Moriarty, Swindig

Knowing your audience is not just about understanding the things they like and are interested in, though that helps. Instead, also think about the types of area they want to travel to. Frequently I see events that look interesting but if it’s not easy for me to travel from office to event and then home, the likelihood of me making that extra effort to attend is pretty slim. For Swindig, they identified an audience group of potential attendees who just lived a little too far out to travel to the big central events, but who still had a lot of interest in the digital marketing sector. The result is a busy, popular event, in an otherwise fairly quiet networking area.

Cross Promotion

Tim-Sheed“Team up with other industry groups that complement the content you are promoting. Partnerships or joint events can benefit both parties as they are a quick and easy way to access a large number of like-minded people”

Tim Sheed, SearchLondon

If you’re a new event, or targeting a small niche then it can be difficult to gain immediate attention for the event you’re hosting. The likelihood is you’ve been inspired by your attendance at other similar events, so why not utilise those relationships to help promote your own event?  For example, if you’re launching an event focused on Analytics, then attendees of an SEO event are likely to be interested so you could work together to help promote your events together. Supporting other events is also a way to pick up more tips for running yours, and meet people to collaborate with if you choose to grow your event bigger and bigger each year.

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Understand the Competition

Nichola-Stott“The most important point is to emphasise the potential benefits to busy people giving up their precious spare time. As Digital Hampshire is a free mini-conference, based in the evenings, rather than competing with other conferences in the region, we’re competing with friends and family time. In our messaging we make sure to stress the quality of the content, speaker and learning outcomes, plus the additional benefits of networking and socialising with industry peers at the drinks afterwards.”

Nichola Stott, Digital Hampshire

By working out the opportunity cost of someone attending your event, you can determine the best way to explain it to your audience. It would be easy to assume that people choosing your event are turning down multiple other events or work in order to attend, but in reality it’s likely they’re giving up their free time.

This means you need to demonstrate that your event is adding enough value for someone to put it above an evening of Netflix and pizza. It’s crucial that the messages you use on your event information, email marketing and social media all reflect the benefits of the event. For example, the networking element means your attendees will still get the opportunity to relax and unwind after a busy day of work.

Make the Most of the Resources You Have

charlie-williams“Take advantage of local contacts. Your event is likely based in a geographical area, so especially for your first events, make the most of those in your local area to help build a following, & become evangelists who will do some of the promotion lifting for you. Buy people coffees, ask them for advise on what they’d like to see at a local event or give them free tickets – just find reasons to talk to your local community.

Also, make sure you ask your speakers for a preview of their talk. Not only can you add a synopsis in your event’s home, you can take the key ideas the audience will learn as teaser-text in your promotional material to entice a potential audience.”

Charlie Williams, Optimise Oxford

When you’re initially promoting your event, you may find that there are budget and time limitations that will appear daunting at first. Instead of being blinded by the ‘where do I begin’ panic, start by focusing on the resources you already have. Investing the time in your local contacts and making a personal connection with some influential attendees will help the popularity of your event grow organically, meanwhile an experienced and knowledgeable speaker will give you a wealth of information to start your promotion with. By giving teasers of the type of insight attendees may get if you have an expert presenting, you’ll be able to encourage people to sign up and spike interest in the event. These simple methods utilise information you should already have to hand and will help you to make the most out of the time you have to work on promotion.

And finally, make sure your event is awesome…

dom-hodgson“I’ll open my thoughts by being the Grinch in the article. Before you start promoting your event, look at what you are organising and figure out what makes it unique?

Think clearly about what you and your audience will get out of the event and what will attract them (and if the event is during the work day, what will convince their employer to let them have the day off)

Once you’ve decided that your event is amazing and people are going to come, do what you would for any campaign. Get a domain, get the twitter and facebook account, start collecting email addresses as soon as possible (people hate launchrock but bloody hell it works) and start interacting with your audience,hire an amateur comedian to MC the event , make some moo cards and give them out whenever you go to a relevant social event (you are going to those alright right?) do guest posts on relevant blogs, ask your speakers to do a blog post or give them a badge to put on the website (but don’t hassle them).

And never stop talking about it, you don’t know who knows someone who knows someone that might be interested.”

Dom Hodgson, Amateur Comedian (and organiser of Think Visibility, and does something at Kerboo)

This really sums it up, alongside all of the different ways you may choose to promote your event, fundamentally you need to believe that it is awesome. Once you have that faith in your event, and so do all your organiser helpers, then you’ll really be able to sell the idea of attending to anyone. It’s important that your enthusiasm for your own event is what makes it stand out and gets people excited about attending.

The TL;DR

Every digital marketing event is different. Make sure yours is awesome, and suits the audience you’re targeting. Invest time into promoting it and building relationships to help gain attention, but also keep in mind what it is you are trying to get out of it as the organiser.

Digital Marketing Events should be fun, for both the attendees and those in charge, so keep it light-hearted and if all else fails, ask your sponsors for a bigger bar tab.

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h

Hannah Thorpe is a Digital Specialist at White.net, with 2 years’ experience in content marketing and technical SEO so far. White.net is a digital marketing agency which works across SEO, PPC, Content Marketing and Digital PR.

State of Digital

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3 Tips for Retailers Promoting a New Product via Email

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You’ve worked hard to create or find a great product, and now it’s time for your customers to reap the benefits. But because you’re unveiling something new and possibly unfamiliar, it’s important to keep messaging clear, concise and helpful.

Any announcement email should tell the customer three things: What the new product is, what it can do for the consumer, and what action should be taken next. That’s a good deal of information to get across in just one message, but it can be done efficiently with the right copy and design. We put together three tips below to help you make sure your email is straightforward and, most importantly, effective.

1. Make your excitement contagious

If you’re rolling out a new product, it’s likely something your customers have requested or something you think they will benefit from. Don’t be afraid to let your enthusiasm about the product shine through! Adding personality never hurts, as long as it is consistent with your brand voice. When you’re crafting the copy, start by writing as if you were describing the product in person, and then work from there.

Look at the example below from Peak. Phrases like “We’ve been working,” “We’re excited to share it with the world,” and “we think you’re going to love it,” make it clear they are passionate about their product and can’t wait to share it with you. The example also makes clear the value that this product will bring to users, and because Peak also asks for feedback, the email feels more personable and genuine.

3 Tips for Retailers Promoting a New Product via Email

When you’re excited, it’s likely that customers will be too. Read your copy out loud to make sure it sounds like something you would say. And always keep it authentic.

2. Describe the new product and its value

Details are important, but they can also be boring. For a new product email, you want to provide just enough information so that a user is intrigued and understands what you’re offering. You don’t want to overwhelm them with so much information that they abandon the email without taking action. A good rule of thumb is to write the sentence you want to write, and then cut it in half.

When it comes to copywriting, it’s been shown that users absorb the first three and the last three words of a headline. Follow similar parameters here. Treat each point in your email as if it’s a headline, and try to convey the most important information in about 6-10 words. In the About.me example below, you’ll see that each product point has a short description that’s no more than ten words long.

3 Tips for Retailers Promoting a New Product via Email

3. Pick a CTA and stick with it

There’s so much information in a product announcement that it can be tempting to offer your reader multiple options for where to go next. “See the product in action,” “learn more about these features,” and “sign up,” could all be realistic calls to action, but it’s important to keep your email focused. Offer the reader a clear path forward.

If you want them to learn more, send them to an in-depth page with greater details. Make sure that page has a clear next step too. If you want to get readers straight to the sign-up, tell them the most pertinent information up front and prompt them to sign up. Then offer more resources after they’ve made an account.

3 Tips for Retailers Promoting a New Product via Email

When you have multiple CTAs in a single email, it can feel inconsistent, and customers can get distracted. The result may be that they don’t take any action at all.

The above email from About.me gets straight to the point with a prominent “View Your Stats” button after a few lines of introduction. Then, after they provide more details about what will be available on the new page, they repeat the same CTA. It provides consistency and offers a direct path forward for people who want to click immediately, and for those who desire to learn more before clicking.

No matter what your product email is announcing, it’s important to keep the messaging clear and help your customers understand what the new product can do for them. By providing a sense of urgency and excitement, they’ll be ready to click and learn more.

Want more tips and tactics? Sign up for the weekly VR Buzz.

Sarah Maloy is a copywriter and digital marketing strategist. Follow her on Twitter @smaloy and see more of her work at http://maloy.co.

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