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Event marketing provides a means to gain valuable knowledge about a particular field, to network, or to promote a product or business. Events may be presentations, conferences, seminars, tradeshows, parties and exhibits. These events are often live-streamed to offer an online experience. Strictly online events, such as webinars, also exist. Events give the opportunity for real-time, personal interaction with colleagues, partners, industry experts and potential customers.
Companies can utilize events in various ways. You may choose to stage an event to promote your product or business. You can also present your product in an exhibit at a tradeshow, or speak at events as a means to promote your company or product, thus positioning yourself as an expert in a field. People attend events to take advantage of the opportunity to network, establish or nurture leads and relationships, and educate themselves. Events give the possibility to communicate in a way that allows you control over your message on a more personal level, which may be particularly suited to certain audiences. The interactive, real world context can make a lasting impression.
The goals of hosting or attending events are many. Your goals may include promoting your brand, and/or to inform and instruct about your product. You can work events to generate demand, or to gain exposure in the press, as trade magazines attend and write about conferences and tradeshows. You can engage customers more easily, when your customer base attends an event. By attending events, you can also learn more about your field, its products, the market, your competition, future trends, and what products you may want to incorporate into your business. You can network, meeting up with thought leaders, industry influencers, leads, and partners.
Event planning takes research, knowledge, strategy, and creativity. Preparation includes promotion, which may be both paid and organic. Newsletters, brochures, trade magazine ads, social media, email, and your network can help to gain exposure and advertise an event. Google+ has an events feature, and LinkedIn and other social media platforms offer more avenues for engagement. After an event comes the follow-up, communicating with attendees in order to strengthen relationships and generate buzz.
Some popular marketing events (there are hundreds worldwide) include Hubspot’s Inbound marketing conference, SXSW Interactive in Texas, MozCon’s digital marketing, the Content Marketing Academy conferences in the UK, and Digimarcon’s worldwide events, the self-described “Largest Digital Marketing Conference Series in the World.”
Event marketing can be an incredibly useful tool in a broad-based marketing approach that incorporates different channels. Events also enable you to grow professionally by increasing both knowledge and network.
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