THREE THINGS THAT EVENTS CAN DO FOR YOU:
Customers are always a little sceptical of any company. They wonder if it really knows what it is doing and if it can be trusted. When a company runs an event with cooperation from other companies, community groups, and the media, people get the impression that the company is trustworthy. People feel comfortable with companies that will run events that are subject to public scrutiny.
Communicating with customers
Finding something new to say is one of the challenges of keeping your name in front of customers. You need to give customers a reason to read your message. Events provide with you new facts, both before and after the event occurs. They give a reason not just to write but to call prospects.
If you are a landscape designer who specializes in landscaping the yards of large homes and installing rock gardens, events are the ideal way to target customers.
You could have a university don to give a class or demonstration. You and the don could do a few radio interviews. You could have a rock garden class, or you could co-sponsor a contest with a gardening club. All of these events could attract publicity, and all of them would target the right customer, build your credibility, and encourage people to buy your services.
SIZE OF EVENTS
Most marketers expect events to be big. But an event doesn’t have to be big to be effective. There are three reasons for running an event:
To create name recognition.
To generate sales through the event’s publicity.
To make contacts with key people.
It is not the size of the event itself that is important, it is the result that you get from it that counts.
TYPES OF EVENTS
There is an almost unlimited number of events that you could run. A jewellery store ran a promotion in which people came into the store and melted ice cubes. Inside each cube was either a piece of glass or diamond. The store showed people how they could tell the difference. The program was a huge success.
Other possible types of events are:
Classes and seminars
Special clinics at trade fairs
Promotions coordinated with community groups
Theme events. Such as Health Awareness Day
Sponsorship of community events
Craft days, or other events where people make something
You can get other ideas by watching trade magazines and community newspapers for the announcement of events.
COMBINE WITH OTHER COMPANIES
The most effective way to market industrial products is to combine with two or three other companies whose products are targeted at the same customer. This increases credibility, cuts expenses, and increases your publicity exposure, as your information will also go to prospects on other companies’ mailing lists.
Events give you numerous marketing possibilities. You just have to be prepared to cash in on them. When you get ready to run an event, use this list to remind you of the action steps you should take:
Arrange for newspaper ad trade magazine publicity.
Send letters to current and potential customers
Network with important people and groups.
Coordinate the event with another company, a distributor, a supplier, or a community group.
Arrange for radio publicity, both before and during the event.
Have in-store promotion with signs and displays.
Prepare promotion sheets for salespeople to pass out to current customers or prospects.
Send key customers invitations for both themselves and their friends. This tactic is especially effective when you sponsor community events.
Take photos and interview people for after-event newsletter and newspaper publicity.
Makeup posters and other permanent publicity for future customers or for a reception room or in-store displays. This is a key tactic if you sponsor a community event like a marathon run.
Make sure you have large signs or banners promoting your name at any event you are involved in.
Start an event file with your ideas for events and magazine or newspaper stories about other events.