For event planners and professionals today, marketing your event can be a headache. Gone are the days of posting flyers to billboards or relying on word of mouth to garner a wide audience. Now, digital marketing leads the way in terms of getting the news of your conference or event out to the masses. There are numerous tools and platforms dedicated to taking your event from an idea to a sold-out reality; the challenge is knowing how to utilize their capabilities and differentiating yourself from your competition.

In the initial piece of our new four-part series “Digital Marketing for Today’s Event Professional,” we are going to take a look at how you can separate your event from the competition by simply knowing what your audience wants to see and hear.

As I mentioned before, there are myriad tools and platforms that can help you digitally promote an event. Whether that be sending emails, scheduling social media posts, or designing your event’s website or landing page, these tools can help individuals with limited marketing know-how create an appealing digital deliverable. The downside of this abundance of resources is that the playing field has been leveled between you and everyone else who is promoting an event similar to yours.

So, how do you set yourself apart?

Let’s start with the obvious, let people know who you are and why they should be listening to you. Before you hit send on that email or publish that tweet, you have to ask yourself if you are producing something that is compelling enough to capture a bystander’s attention. People are simple creatures and are so overwhelmed by their daily massive influx of information that you, as a marketer, have a very small window of opportunity to grasp someone.

“The 15-second rule” of digital marketing refers to the fact that the average visitor spends 15 seconds on your website, and if you haven’t generated interest in that amount of time, then you most likely aren’t going to.

Every graphic you publish and every description you write should have the following prominently displayed in massive letters:

  • A clear call-out to your target demographic (think “Calling All Sales Professionals”)
  • Your undisputed value proposition (a special keynote speaker, for example.)
  • Action, typically seen as a button with a form (Register Here, Learn More)
  • An incentive (Register Today for xx% discount)

Sending out a digital message about that event is your chance to brag about all of the hard work you’ve done! Let people know all of the sessions you coordinated and that jaw-dropping keynote speaker you snagged! You have an opportunity to shout these accomplishments from the rooftop by strengthening and enhancing those parts of your marketing message directly!

Remember also to be honest and upfront with your audience. Tell them all of the details about your event and why you think they could truly benefit from attending. Highlight all of these benefits within your marketing messaging in clear, easy-to-read points so that your potential audience can understand exactly what it is they will gain from attending. Every conference or event will claim to be the best or have the greatest speakers; set yours apart by being honest with your audience and telling them exactly what they will gain by attending.

If you enjoyed the tips listed above, stay tuned for the next parts of our four-part series on “Digital Marketing for Today’s Event Planner” in which we will tackle the following:

  • Utilizing Google Ads and Analytics
  • Keeping Your Content Honest, Fresh, and Relevant
  • Following Up With Your Attendees