- Promote your event
- Grow your email list
- Strengthen your influence and reputation as an industry resource
- Attract vendors and sponsors
- Extend your marketing budget
- Generate pre-event income
Marketing an event takes more than posts and ads a few months before your event. You know you need to develop multiple channels throughout the year and keep your name in front of people. A Digital Magazine is a great tool to promote your event without the appearance of advertising.
“A good advertisement is one which sells the product without drawing attention to itself,” David Ogilvy.
A Digital Magazine is a valuable component to increasing event attendance and sponsorship. When integrated into your marketing as a long-term brand building strategy, it will introduce your event to new markets and expand your attendee base. And it can even pay for itself through ad revenue.
Businesses are always seeking new, targeted ways to reach customers. Events are one of the most effective methods of marketing. Competition for attendees and sponsors is fierce. It’s a constant battle to appeal to the limited budgets of ticket buyers and sponsors. What you do during the year leading up to your event is as important as the event itself, and a free Digital Magazine will establish your event as a legitimate and valuable experience well worth the investment.
- Your magazine doesn’t have to be huge. In fact, a smaller publication is preferred. It’s not about scale, it’s about value. People don’t have time to read much anymore. But they love free content, and will subscribe to receive info about something they are interested in.
- It doesn’t have to be every month – a quarterly publication is a great interval to start with. That gives you time to gather quality material and thoroughly promote each issue.
- Your Digital Magazine itself can be a new revenue source with paid advertising spots for exhibitors and vendors. Because it costs very little to publish and distribute your publication, those advertising revenues are free money. Exhibitors will jump at the chance to start marketing before your event. Include advertising and feature articles in your Digital Magazine as sponsorship package incentives. I recommend keeping ads to a minimum to enhance the sponsor visibility, and not overwhelm or irritate your audience.
- Your Digital Magazine allows you to communicate directly with your market. For example, a “letter from the editor” or a behind-the-scenes look at your organization can create a personal connection.
- Your digital subscribers are a valuable highly targeted prospect list for your event. Offer them a special discount to your event or extra perks.
- Your Digital Magazine can attract advertisers who might not want to or be able to attend the event as an exhibitor.
- The more subscribers you have the more attractive your event is to exhibitors and vendors and the more you can charge them to participate.
Finding Content to engage and interact with your market
The secret to a successful publication is to offer fresh, interesting, relevant and informative articles that connect to your event without directly promoting your event. Maintain an editorial standard and minimize direct selling to keep subscribers wanting the next issue and not make them feel like they’re reading an infomercial.
Here are some ideas:
- Articles about and by speakers your attendees will want to see in person. Chances are your event speakers are also industry movers and shakers.
- Articles about exhibitors your attendees will be interested in learning about (hint – offer a premium “featured exhibitor” level that includes a feature article).
- Product reviews are always a hit.
- How-to articles to help your attendees succeed (marketing tips, inspiration, etc.)
- Political issues (bills, laws, etc.)
- Opportunities, grants, jobs, other educational opportunities
- Case studies and success articles about past attendees.
- Recycle articles and posts already on your website
- Publish an Event Preview issue with inside info about speakers, pre-event promotions, and teasers about the upcoming event. Include sightseeing recommendations for out of towners who might arrive a day early. Great for snagging last-minute attendees and exhibitors.
- Publish a Post Event issue with photos of attendees and exhibitors and articles that highlight some of the most popular and important moments. People love to see themselves “in print” and your exhibitors will appreciate the extra exposure.
- Ask for articles from your exhibitors and industry experts. Invite them to discuss trends, technology, and other news. Don’t use these to talk about how great you or they are, rather to provide useful information. New sponsors and exhibitors will line up to participate.
- Ask your readers for feedback on what they’d like to see at the next event, or their experiences and photos from the last event, and then publish some of their comments or post on your website as testimonials.
Digital Magazines vs. Your Website
You might ask – Why don’t I just post new articles on my website instead of formatting them into a magazine?
A magazine has a very different presentation, focus, reach and effect than a website. You should definitely post all articles on your website. It is an important place to collect and host your content, and provides a stable central location for an established presence. But the magazine format excels at drawing attention to specific content.
- A Digital Magazine is a finite, predictable, familiar format that allows you to put exactly what you want in front of your audience when you want.
- A Digital Magazine has a linear structure that presents your content from start to finish and minimizes distractions. You never know what web page people will land on in your website from Google, and you can’t easily control what content they will see or even if they will find what they’re looking for.
- A magazine’s Table of Contents lets your readers quickly know exactly what they will find inside at a glance without searching.
- Part of the appeal of a magazine is that it contains your most interesting and most relevant content. People don’t have to click through dozens of pages on your site to find something of interest to them.
- A regular magazine provides consistent exposure. Regular, repeated contact keeps readers engaged, improves subscriber retention and is a proven marketing technique.
- Digital Magazines are collectible and easily saved locally to refer to later. Back issues can be posted on your website for easy download by new subscribers.
- A Digital Magazine PDF file is easily shareable to expand your subscriber list, unlike “email newsletters.”
Call Diana today to discuss developing and designing your Digital Magazine to promote your event or organization, generate untapped revenue and grow your email list. 504-312-2354 www.dianathornton.com/event-guides