Imagine the impact on your business if you were able to meet with your target audience in person, develop real life connections, and as a result propel your content marketing strategy. This does not have to be a figment of your imagination as live events are quickly becoming a top marketing priority for businesses.
In 2018, 400 mid-to-senior level marketers were surveyed about the current state of event marketing in Event Marketing 2018: Benchmarks and Trends. Eighty percent responded that live events are critical to their organization’s success. In fact, many plan to increase their spending in this arena.
Whether you host or attend, live events and marketing conferences offer you an excellent opportunity to get to know your target audiences, demonstrate thought leadership and even get user generated content. Let’s explore the four ways that live events can boost your content marketing strategy.
- Live events have become a critical part of business’ marketing strategy.
- The build-up to an event gives brands a chance to be transparent in their day-to-day work.
- Event organizers are able to gather critical data on their target audiences.
- User generated content not only helps broaden your audience but also helps in marketing the event.
The marketing strategy for live events starts well before guests arrive. Generating anticipation for the upcoming event is critical to achieve the ultimate goal in getting customers to purchase tickets to the event. One effective way to do this is by producing transparent content.
Transparency in content marketing works. It allows the customer to see that the faces of an organization are human and share the same experiences as them. In August 2018, a Sprout Social study revealed that “86% of Americans say transparency from businesses is more important than ever before.”
An excellent example of transparency in event marketing is in Social Media Examiner’s video series, The Journey. Each season follows Founder and CEO Michael Stelzner as he and his team work to surpass their goals for the annual conference, Social Media Marketing World. Not only does the team reveal their day-to-day operations when it comes to planning the event, they also talk about what platforms are working as well as those that aren’t.
2. Thought Leadership
While it does not happen overnight, it is advantageous to you and your business if you’re a thought leader in your industry. An Edelman and LinkedIn Survey reported that out of 1,300 US business decision makers, 45% said demonstrating thought leadership has directly impacted their decision to work with a company.
Pursuing speaking opportunities, publication bylines, and publishing blog articles allow you to demonstrate your expertise in your field. In turn, you can use this content to boost your strategy on your website and various social media platforms.
Being known as a thought leader is a strategy I have implemented at Marketing Insider Group. Not only has it opened opportunities for my company to help clients, but it gives me an idea of the questions people are asking about content marketing.
3. Data Collection
Remember the last time you sent a survey out to your customers. You scrutinized every detail: the headline, the questions, the length of the survey. If you were lucky, 10-15% of your audience responded. With live events, you have a much better chance of getting the data you seek.
As we mentioned earlier, live events give you a chance to get to know your audiences and collect critical information that can help your content marketing efforts. While the touchpoints vary, you are better able to collect data at live events through online registrations, live polling and/or post-session surveys.
4. User Generated Content (UGC)
Perhaps the biggest content marketing boost that comes from live events is the chance for user generated content, or in this case, attendee generated content. It is estimated that 77% of Americans have a social media profile. When they post on their social media platform about your event, engagement can increase by as much as 28%.
Not only does this reduce the burden placed on you and your event marketing team, it broadens your network. Word-of-mouth messages are reshared 25 times more frequently than those from a corporate social media account.
As you plan your event, make sure to include a memorable hashtag and provide tips as to how your attendees can best connect to the event and others on social media.
Let’s Meet in Person!
Sharing my knowledge to help you excel as a content marketer is a passion of mine, whether it’s through speaking at conferences or through my website. I’d love to see you at one of the events I’ll be speaking at in 2019:
- 5th Annual Super Content Day in Stockholm Sweden April 10-12
- Adobe Summit, in Las Vegas, March 26-28
- Experience Inbound June 3-4 Milwaukee and Green Bay, WI
- Content Marketing World Sept 3-6 in Cleveland, OH
- MarketingProfs B2B Forum October 16-18 in Washington, DC
Want me to speak at your event? Contact me today!