I often blog about the importance of event organisers having control (or at least a lot of influence) over their event marketing. And the main reason is that I often see great events falter on the back of bad email marketing. When this happens it is of course a real shame!
So in a little bit of a break from tradition from our Blog here’s a short clip about the importance and the impact that you can have when you demand that good email marketing for events.
Here are my top ten tips covering email marketing for events:
1. Use specific tailored email marketing software. It is worth it’s weight in gold and it can (and should) pay for itself within a month.
2. Use the functionality that great email software allows. Find out every-which-way to bend it and make it do what you want it to do.
3. Your email marketing is only as good as your database. Before you invest time and effort in sprucing up your templates and investing on technology give the old database a good dust down.
4. If your database is missing some useful information don’t be shy emailing your contacts and asking them to update their details. For example it’s likely that you have only recently started collecting Twitter handles so why not email your database and ask them for this extra information? The more information the better your targeting.
5. Targeted emails have more success. I’ve persuaded marketers to spend half a day writing a few tailored emails to less than 50 targets a time. It’s a cultural change for some marketers but targeting really works. The example in the clip is a real one: from 7 bookings a week to 72 just by tailoring their messaging and targeting their emails.
6. Don’t just look at your own database for contact details. In a few organisations we’ve worked with we’ve struck gold just by asking who else in the organisation has details of their customers. You may be amazed to see what other parts of the organisation are holding on to.
7. No one can deny the importance of the content of your emails and it would be impossible to provide detailed advice in one Blog. So my top tip is to think that every possible attendee is a ‘reluctant’ attendee. This tends to really focus the content and length of your email communications.
8. The success of marketing that is content based is increasing. Every email should link to some content relevant to your event. Even better if it is content that you have created. Linking to your event Blog is an easy way to demonstrate your knowledge.
9. Social Media is playing an ever increasingly important role in event marketing but for the vast majority of events (assuming you have a good email list) it should still play second fiddle to email marketing. So don’t be blinded and lose sight of the importance of a great email campaign.
10. As an organiser you know your audience as well, and dare I say, better than your marketer. So ensure that the email marketing is fit for purpose. For example if you have a lot of content in your programme that is figure based, chart heavy, graph-tastic! You should ensure that the email marketing reflects this.
This isn’t a power grab by an event organiser it’s about subsidiarity. A great organiser should know their audience inside out and along with the skills of a great marketer this should be a marriage made in heaven. As long as you see email marketing as the ring , or the priest, or the church. Or a metaphor stretched too far!