Boosting business with integrated marketing

As
the end of the year draws closer, I find myself reflecting on the
marketing efforts we’ve undertaken to boost events. It hasn’t been plain
sailing in the industry since the downturn, but business is picking up.
With so much choice in the capital for organiser’s venues need a strong
presence to increase business, and I have found the most effective way
to achieve this is through a sustained, integrated marketing and PR
campaign.  
 
You might mutter ’obviously’ but with many venues
still constrained by budgets intermittent bursts of marketing tend to
occur. Most commonly marketing efforts appear to be direct mail loaded
with offers and discounts. While this has its place continual
discounting has a negative effect on the business; in the long run as it
just isn’t profitable and degrades the brand’s perception.
 
Not
long ago RSA House was re-launched to the conference and events markets
following an extensive refurbishment with a showcase event, which was
part of a 12 month, integrated marketing and PR campaign. Printed
collateral, social media, direct mail, press releases, a video and micro
site were all utilised. After the showcase 15 show-rounds were
conducted in the first month following the event, 14 events were booked
as a direct result and enquiries showed a 28 per cent increase.
 
Once
you’ve achieved positive results it’s easy to sit back and think you’ve
done enough for them to keep flooding in. However organisers attend
many showcases and launches throughout the year, so what are the chances
you’ll be remembered over everyone else in a busy marketplace?
Showcases are great for the short term, but people soon stop talking and
move on to the next new kid on the block. This is why sustained,
integrated marketing activity is so crucial.
 
My six top tips for boosting business:

  • It
    is important for venues to be seen. Integrated marketing campaigns will
    maintain a venues presence in the industry by expanding its reach. Plan
    activity that will span 12 months or a minimum of six months.
  • Raising
    a venue’s profile and maintaining it are fundamental, but all noise it
    not good noise.  Have a balance that both engages and broadcasts not
    only in coverage but on social networking sites and direct mail.
  • Host
    the right kind of showcase to get your venue in front of the correct
    audience. Exhibitions have their place, but pictures on an iPad can’t
    beat experiencing the venue first hand.  Use this to achieve good
    coverage with the right PR company.
  • Showcases
    can be large scale flamboyant affairs, but don’t be afraid to scale
    back and go for an imitate experience with selected organisers and
    previous clients if budgets are strained.  
  • Create
    interesting and engaging ideas for Christmas and summer events. We’ve
    seen an upsurge in bookings when we’ve delivered a creative concept.
  • Don’t
    underestimate the power of word of mouth. Guests will talk so make sure
    standards are consistent. Use surveys to ensure standards are
    maintained and use the feedback from organisers to improve.

Any comments? Email sarah@mashmedia.net

ConferenceNews Guest Author

Conference News hosts great guests on its pages. Our Blog section is the collection of the best opinions in the UK and international events industry.

ConferenceNews Guest Author

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ConferenceNews Guest Author

Conference News hosts great guests on its pages. Our Blog section is the collection of the best opinions in the UK and international events industry.

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