Mark Fein is SVP, Strategy at FreemanXP. He is endlessly curious, always questioning the way things are, but also always positive in his approach. His drive to experience and understand the world around him, and do everything he can to make it even better by connecting people and ideas, makes him a game-changer for Freeman and our clients.
Three Things Event Marketers Should Be Doing Now to Plan for Next Year
When it comes to building strong connections between a brand and an audience, there’s nothing quite like brand experience.
The medium combines several different elements — physical space, digital technology, interpersonal communication, and community — all to create a powerful and engaging marketing tool. In fact, nearly two-thirds of marketers say brand experience helps creating ongoing relationships with key audiences and make them feel valued.
Planning is key to ensure you’re getting the most out of a brand experience strategy. Here are three steps you can take to look across your event portfolio to help you optimize a return on investment.
Identify your big picture goals
For all its size and scope, a brand experience is still just an element of a larger marketing strategy. Work with your organization’s stakeholders to determine the brand’s overarching objectives for the year, and how brand experience can help propel them forward.
While your brand experience should tie back to the overall business goals, it should also connect with other elements of your marketing mix to bolster the overall brand message.
It is important to make sure that consistent messaging, branding, and storytelling are woven between events, email marketing, social media, and advertising — all serving common goals. When thinking of the brand experience as the hub, each component of the marketing mix can play to its unique strength while also operating in concert, all to drive the most impact.
Optimize your budget
Take time to review your portfolio, including proprietary events, exhibit opportunities, sponsorships, and other activates related to brand experience.
Why? Because your needs change!
Also, determine KPIs for your portfolio that you want to measure throughout the year, at each and every activation.
Once you’ve sorted through all of this, it’s important to remember that elimination is as important as addition. Make sure to remove any elements that don’t align with the overall strategy or don’t provide enough value.
Right up front, decide what’s most important and put an achievable measurement plan in place to capture it. That way you can use the data to your benefit, make changes that are needed on the fly, and figure out what elements will provide the most value to the brand.
Think like your audience
Defining your audiences will really help prioritize your needs.
Work with your team to develop agreed-upon audience personas, engagement strategies, and journey mapping per audience segment. Be purposeful with every step of your strategy. Resources are typically tight, so make sure that everything you do meets the needs of your target audience.
Marketers today must cut through a ton of noise to optimize their investment. By focusing on strategy up front, you can fine tune your brand experience so that every single element is working its absolute hardest to drive engagement. Make sure that all those elements are in line with the overall vision for the brand and the business.
A little foresight and planning will help you see some nice returns throughout the year. Download our insights paper to learn more.
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