Events often sit on the backburner when businesses are in their early stages, but hosting events comes with a range of benefits.
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From face-to-face interaction with clients to attracting media attention, there are plenty of reasons you should consider investing in events. Here are five of the main ones:
1. Attract PR attention
When you’re finding your feet as a business, it can be difficult to place your brand in the media spotlight. But by hosting a special event and inviting members of local media networks, you can open the door to some brand-boosting PR coverage.
Write a professional press release, send it to the relevant journalists and follow-up with a personal phone call to ask if they’d like to attend. Encouraging journalists, photographers and bloggers to attend your event might not be as difficult as you think - and social media can be a real life-line here, allowing you to spread the word quickly and easily.
With relevant bloggers and online influencers mentioning your business online, you’ll have a better chance of seeing a bigger turnout on the day.
2. Interest investors
Managing finances can be difficult when you’re starting out, and you may require a cash injection at some point along the way.
Hosting an event is your chance to demonstrate to potential investors that you have something to offer that others don’t. Show them how confident you are in your business and, when you approach them further down the line, you can prove that you’re ready to move forward, engage with stakeholders and drive your business’s success.
Whether you’re launching a new product range or opening your first high street shop, investors will be impressed by your willingness to put yourself out there.
If there’s a particular investor you want to impress and they’re travelling from afar, you could offer to put them up in cosy local accommodation and treat them to a meal near the event venue. Whether that’s a charming cottage in Craster or a riverside suite by the Thames, you’ll be sure to start off on the right foot if you go the extra mile.
3. Extend your network
For cash-strapped small businesses, having a network of contacts can be invaluable as you grow.
Events give you the perfect opportunity to engage with experienced professionals in your line of work. From meeting potential partners to receiving expert advice, there’s a whole host of reasons you should think about ‘who you know’ in your industry.
Whether you’re discovering the latest market trends or discussing industry best practices, making contacts is key to unlocking opportunities and increasing that all important ROI - so make sure you come armed with plenty of business cards to hand out.
4. Create a buzz
So you’ve planned your event, the attendees have arrived, the limelight is on you and now it’s your time to shine.
This moment can be pivotal. It’s the ideal time to display what you’ve been working hard on for months or years, and can be the moment you need to grab the attention of those in your industry, as well as consumers.
It’s now up to you to draw your audience in and highlight what makes you special - how do you stand out from the crowd? Come with a unique angle, make your brand accessible and engage with attendees to get people interested about what you’re bringing to the table.
Whether you’re offering a live product demonstration or a competition to win items from your new range, building an exciting atmosphere during your event will ensure your brand remains memorable in attendees’ minds for months and years to come.
5. Meet clients and customers
There are few better ways to engage with customers than with a face-to-face conversation.
TV, radio and print can all be great ways to reach an audience, but events are where you can truly get to know your consumer on a personal level. They offer a chance to make a memorable first impression, ask for crucial feedback, and understand who it is you’re actually targeting.
Whether you’re handing out satisfaction surveys, collecting the first addresses for your email marketing list or directly selling at a trade show, event marketing offers a wholly unique approach to customer engagement that you won’t find anywhere else.
From small-time manufacturers to rising marketing agencies, there’s a place for an event marketing strategy in every industry - so follow our tips and make the most out of your all-important moment in the spotlight.
This article is a guest post from Cottages in Northumberland.