Sometimes, putting together a plan for a great event just isn’t enough, and your list of attendees just is lower than you would like. Luckily, even if the initial buzz for your event wasn’t what you expected, there are five strategies you can implement to help your event generate some noise.
Target The Right Audience
A common reason why an event didn’t gather much attention is simply due to poor targeting. Failing to identify the groups of people that would benefit from attending an event can make otherwise well-executed marketing efforts, ineffective.
If your list of registered attendees is lower than you would like, it’s time to audit your targeting philosophy. Consider who it is you’re trying to reach and be open to the possibility that you may be targeting the wrong people. Or at the very least, that there are other groups of people who would also find your event valuable to them.
Try to match your event’s value proposition with the type of attendee who would find that truly valuable. Once you’ve done that, you’ve found your target audience and it’s time to reach out to them!
Advertise On Social Media
Having a social media presence for every event you manage is simply no longer a choice – you just can’t match the targeting and promotional potential that a well-executed social media campaign can provide.
Of course, it isn’t as easy as creating a Facebook Events Page. It’s important to clearly establish your target audience, which can allow you to instantly reach thousands of people that are potentially interested in your event.
Don’t worry if your advertising budget is limited, that’s OK. If you properly structure social media ads to only target highly qualified users, your ROI on a PPC (paid per click) ad campaign should be pretty high.
Create Early Bird Incentives
Striving for a great turnout early is one of the best ways to ensure that you’re not left with a failing event, therefore it’s always a good idea to incentivize early bird registration, which is a ticket type that can tyipically be created using event registration software.
Special promotions, prizes, or extra event features can all work well to encourage attendees to register early.
Remember that in addition to a good deal, most attendees love high-quality swag, and exclusive at event access. Providing them with access to a VIP lounge, complimentary airport pickup, or an extra night at a hotel could all be incentives that encourage some attendees to register before they might otherwise be inclined to.
Directly Follow-Up With Potential Attendees
Don’t be afraid to send a personal email to attendees from previous events. Especially if they were early bird ticket buyers or if they bought more than one ticket. You won’t convert everyone you contact the first time. If your long-term loyal fans don’t jump at the very first offer you send them, shoot them a follow-up email.
Remember to add a bit of urgency into your follow-ups as well – reminding recipients that there are limited spots available or that prices will rise. These tactics can greatly increase your conversions.
Encourage Speakers To Promote Your Event
If you manage to attract some prominent industry speakers, don’t forget to use it to your advantage – they usually have a strong following, which can help you greatly expand the reach of your event.
Ask your event speakers to promote your event on their social media channels. There followers are likely your target audience as well. Don’t be shy about asking speakers to do this - it will benefit them also by showing that they’re associated with a great event and by potentially increasing the number of people who attend their presentation.
Boosting Event Attendance - Summary
If at first your event isn’t attracting as much attention as you would like, don’t fear! There are a number of tactics you can employ to generate more ticket sales.
The important thing is to do, is to use tools that can help spread your message quickly, as well as making sure that you’re not barking up the wrong tree by targeting the wrong audience.
Sarah Hill is a professional blogger and creative content writer. She works as a Marketing Manager at Seven Events. Seven Events are the best event production & conference and incentive travel management company, delivering global meeting and free venue finding service.