4 Ways to Generate Buzz and Media Attention at Your Next Event
By: Catherine Bormann
2023 is the year in-person events will make their official comeback, well sort of. One thing is certain, zoom fatigue is real and consumers are ready to experience brands in-person again. In fact, a survey by Event Marketer determined that 83% of Americans said that they miss attending in-person conferences. If brands want to reach consumers they must prioritize in-person activations that directly engage and immerse key audiences. If they don’t, their competitors will.
While the demand for in-person events is skyrocketing, so is the demand for hybrid delivery. A survey conducted by Bizzabo found that 97% of respondents expect to see more hybrid events going forward. Consumers want the best of both worlds: connection and flexibility. For brands, that means it will be critical to integrate digital and direct consumer touch points to optimize the customers’ experience.
Now that you know consumers are yearning to experience brands in-person, how do you get them to show up to your event? Here are 4 ways to ensure your event generates positive buzz and media attention.
1. BUILD EXCITEMENT
If you build it they will come. The “it” being anticipation, of course. Pre-event marketing is crucial to building buzz and getting attendees excited about what they can expect. UBMs Content Connects research found 96% of attendees look for information before attending an event. Your attendees are craving content, so feed it to them. Create a hype campaign that drops amazing content leading up to your event. Don’t forget to include videos, sneak peeks, Q&A sessions and a catchy event hashtag.
Pro Tip: Check the calendar before locking in the date of your event; make sure it’s a slow news day.
2. MAKE IT NEWSWORTHY
Finding a newsworthy element for your event can be challenging. If you solely promote your event based on the fact that it’s an event, the media will not show up. The media cares about how your event impacts its audience. If you can authentically answer that question without selling your brand you will get coverage. Once you have nailed down your story angle you need to make it easy for the media to cover your event. Always use a press kit, write both a press release and media alert, gather b-roll and images ahead of time, and have interviewees primed and ready to go.
Pro Tip: Send links to images and b-roll via Dropbox or Google Drive.
3. ENGAGE THE POWER OF INFLUENCERS
Influencer relations are no longer limited to product or brand promotion. Brands are now leveraging influencers to promote their events. According to a study by Launchmetrics, 28% of marketers preferred to use influencer marketing as part of their event promotion strategy and 49% of internet users count on influencer recommendations to make their choices. A well-rounded influencer strategy includes ways to drive new audiences to your event, increase attendance (through a strong call to action), and generate buzz before, during and after your event.
Pro Tip: Create giveaways your influencers can promote.
4. SOCIALIZE YOUR EVENT
Social media continues to be a necessary tactic to promote events. According to a recent survey conducted by Eventbrite, 64% of the attendees said they will make their decisions about which events to go to based on what they saw online. To tap into this captive audience brands need to serve up their content like a perfect cup of coffee, pour over style. The continuous pouring of content leading up to your event should include: daily Instagram stories, giveaways or contests, Instagram lives, TikTok videos, sneak peeks, and behind-the-scenes content.
Pro Tip: Don’t forget to run supporting ad campaigns.
Incorporating PR (early) is a vital part of the event planning process. As demand increases for in-person events, brands will need to get creative with how they promote and execute their events. If you need help planning and promoting your next event– call us. We’re here to help.