Events are the cat’s meow of marketing. Whether helping your organization generate more leads, sales, conversions; increase brand awareness or boost organizational reputation, the importance of events can’t be denied. However, if you want to get larger budgets for your events, you’re going to have to prove ROI. How do you do this and ensure that you’ll get the maximum return on your events?
Thankfully, you don’t have to figure it all out by yourself. Take a sneak peek at our newest guide, “10 Ways to Increase Your Event ROI.”
Tip 1: Pick your objectives and focus on them.
Before you think, well, duh, think about this; how often have marketers put so much energy into implementing creative tactics only to realize their tactics didn’t help reach any organizational goals or objectives? Increase your ROI by saving time and resources by only identifying and executing marketing tactics that help you achieve your objectives.
Tip 2: Use data to optimize your marketing.
To optimize your marketing promotion cycle, start with looking at past attendee data. Identify when the bulk of attendees have registered for your events and what drove action. Then use this information to optimize your marketing timeline.
Keep in mind that geography is another important data point you can leverage to optimize your marketing. With Localist, you can get insight into how far attendees are willing to travel to your event and use this data for targeted marketing or for venue planning purposes.
Tip 3: Set the foundation for measurement by using tracking urls.
Make sure every channel where you promote your event has a specialized url. You can use free tools like Google URL Builder or Bitly. That way you can see exactly which of your marketing efforts are working.
Tip 4: Secure sponsorships.
A simple way to boost your ROI is to spend less money to get the same or better results. Sponsorships are a great way to do this. When pitching organizations, don’t overlook reaching out to small businesses in your area. They’re always interested in getting in front of their community.
Tip 5: Host a registration contest.
Lower the cost per attendee and increase attendance by getting your brand advocates to do some of your work for you through a registration contest. Consider inviting influencers to participate.
One of the benefits of using influencers is they have built in credibility with their networks that can be transferred to your events. Give each influencer a tracking url so you can see who has driven the most registrations. Reward the winner with comped registration or access to a VIP upgrade.
Tip 6: Use technology to collect real-time data for crowdshaping.
Mobile apps and wearable technology have made it easier than ever for event marketers to use real-time data to shape the attendee experience (also known as crowdshaping). These tools also give event marketers the ability to see what their attendees interact with, read, where they lingered, helping you converting more attendees into customers. They can even help with crowd control, cutting down on your staffing costs.
You can boost your ROI with these tools in several ways such as increasing attendee engagement, enhancing the user experience and converting attendees into members, customers and subscribers.
Tip 7: Use gamification to boost audience participation.
The goal of gamification is to increase engagement among your attendees. Engaged attendees are more likely to share your event with their network, have positive feelings about your brand and less likely to leave your event early. Check out EventMobi, a mobile app that allows attendees to participate in fun challenges such as meeting someone new, finding the CEO or competing to have the most check-ins.
Tip 8: Use social listening to get real-time feedback.
Listening to attendees on social media is a great way to get event feedback. Be sure to address problems and questions so you can enhance the attendee experience and boost ROI. TweetDeck is a free tool that you can use to get started if your attendees are vocal on Twitter.
Tip 9: Collect survey data.
Surveys can highlight exactly where your event thrived or failed. However, few people really want to take your survey. So how do you get this valuable data? Incentives! In addition to gifts, give access to specialized content such as speaker presentations, behind the scenes video or VIP content.
Tip 10: Personalize your follow ups.
The difference between sending a personalized follow up versus a generic one can be a new customer or lost sale.
When the wedding planning site Paper Style started sending more personalized emails to their prospects, their open rate increased by 244 percent, with a click-through rate increase of 161 percent. By increasing open rates and engagement, they were able to the opportunity reach more and convert more people.
Want to dive deeper into the wonderful world of events and ROI? Download your free copy of “10 Ways to Increase Event ROI.”