Tips for building your Event Email Strategy

In the last two weeks I’ve attended seven different events, covering a really wide range of topics, from venture capital, advertising, to audio visual technology. It was interesting to compare how they were communicating with the attendees before, after & during the event – ranging from almost non-existent through to incredibly engaging. Here’s a quick peek at what they were doing & some tips on what you should & shouldn’t be doing with your event communication.

I registered online for all the events, and they all sent me a confirmation/e-ticket. Only three of them sent me anything after that though. The first sent me a thank you email after the event. The second sent me an email at the end of the first day, saying “sorry we missed you at the event” – Despite the fact that I’d been at the event, had been electronically registered at the counter, and had my badge scanned on entry? That was a bit weird. No thank you email though.

The third was playing in a completely different league. Here’s the summary of the emails they sent me:

  1. Day one: Registration e-mail , detailing basic information, social media channels for discussion and the event hashtag
  2. Two weeks prior to the event: Event instructions, directions & tips for making the most of the event
  3. One day prior to the event: Details of sponsored cab ride to the event (more on this later)
  4. Immediately after the event: Thank you email, link to a survey and details of informal event after party
  5. Three days after the event: Event photos, videos, recap of keynotes
  6. Six days after the event: Moderated message from one of the sponsors with an invitation to the sponsors own event

All the emails had (mostly) non-promotional, useful and relevant information. They weren’t so frequent that they were annoying, and because they were relevant I was happy to read them. A really good example of a well thought out, and executed event email strategy. There was a little extra work in making sure that they took photos, videos and the actual design of the emails themselves, but it was far more impactful than any of the other events.

A timely and professional email campaign can have a huge impact on how your event is perceived, and on the overall volume of conversion you enjoy. It’s worth putting in the effort in advance & I’d strongly recommend this approach if you’re planning an event. I promised you some do’s & don’ts so here goes:

Don’t:

  • Assume that event email marketing means just sending a welcome & thank you email
  • Send the wrong emails to the wrong people
  • Have too many specific emails designed for specific groups of people
  • Spam attendees with rubbish

Do:

  • Send as much relevant & useful information as possible
  • Include a prominent hashtag
  • Prepare your emails and formats in advance
  • Send helpful/interesting emails during the event (especially if it’s multi-day)
  • Capture event feedback via email

What your marketing team forgot on Fathers Day

Fathers DayEveryone knows that greeting card companies milk holidays,  and possibly even conspire to create events they can sell more cards through. The real question though, is did you make good use of it?

Ignoring the usual boring discount promos (“10% discount for dads/men”), there are lots of great ways to take advantage of events, festivals & made up days. The more creative you are with your ideas, the more fun, and better they’ll be. The folks at Marketing-Interactive published a few neat fathers day / holiday marketing ideas here.

Yes, it’s a bit late for father days, but there’s plenty more events coming up. So here are the three steps you’ll need:

  1. Get your diary out and start penciling in the ones that could be big for you.
  2. Have a drink, have some fun and come up with some crazy ideas
  3. Stop reading this & implement?

Sometimes we need to forget about all the numbers, analytics and  metrics – and have a little fun (it’s surprisingly effective). Besides, isn’t that why we became marketeers?

How to write a good personal profile

The age old adage of first impressions is true even online, in some ways a lot more so. Whilst you can’t control what people think of you, you can at the very least make sure that they’re seeing (or judging) an accurate impression.

There’s a few ways of doing this, I like to work from my longest (and most boring personal profile) downwards. So first I create a description of myself, as if I was on the “Management” section of a company website. It includes some vital statistics and a nice Steve-Jobs-esque head shot (or whatever styling you prefer):

  1. Title
  2. Company
  3. Key focus / Passion
  4. Hobbies
  5. Past Experience
  6. Accolades & Awards (don’t get too pompous here)
  7. Current Industry Memberships (these are great, they show you’re actively involved & contributing to your profession)
  8. Education (industry qualifications are also great to showcase, plus they’re usually more relvant)

management-profile
Once you’ve got your larger, more wordy, corporate profile done, everything else becomes easy. Don’t forget, that just because it’s your “corporate” profile, doesn’t mean it shouldn’t have your own flavour and styling. There’s nothing worse than a soulless, vanilla personal profile that looks like it’s been created by a machine.

Your next step is to create a series (about three) of increasingly short profiles/bio’s – all of which are effectively excerpts from what you’ve just created. Your twitter bio will probably be the shortest one you’ll need, and maybe one in between. If you opening paragraph is punchy enough, that might be all you need for shorter bio’s.

Just remember to use the same “stock” profiles whenever you setup any online accounts. Keeping your profiles uniform, not only makes you look professional & organised, but ensures that if anyone’s looking you up from anywhere, they’re seeing exactly what you want them to see – not a blank profile or the default nonsense a lot of sites put in.

If you’re managing a company website, try to make all the personal profiles conform to a standard structure, layout and size – it’ll maintain some individual personality, whilst looking much better than having too many varying lengths & styles.