Successful event communications is the gravity that pulls prospective attendees through your registration process. It inspires people to turn out for your event in record numbers and rave about the experience to colleagues and friends. But if you don’t get all the details right, attendance will be lower than expected, and sponsors won’t be happy. You’ll have a tough time persuading attendees to return next year.
This article will help you avoid the hurdles. It looks at four proven tech tools to drive successful communications for live events. You’ll also find best practices to attract the right attendees, keep them engaged for the duration, and leave excited to show up at your next event.
Let’s get started.
Tool #1: Event website builders create custom sites easily.
A new generation of event website builders saves you time and delivers a better user experience.
These tools do the heavy lifting for you. They integrate your event website with the rest of the event management software, so data flows smoothly throughout the platform. The result is a dynamic site that boosts planner efficiency and makes web visits more personalized.
Let’s look at a few examples of what these next-level event websites can do.
For starters, you can say goodbye to repetitive manual updates. When you make a change elsewhere on the platform – like adding speakers or sessions – the sites display new info automatically.
Second, dynamic websites let you track sign-ups and promote lagging sessions while people are in the registration flow.
Third, registrants can get curated, downloadable content on related topics when they sign up for a session.
- Use a flexible, all-in-one platform to build a site that makes a great first impression. Then carry through your branding automatically to email marketing, registration, mobile app, onsite experiences, and post-event community.
- Choose an existing event website template or use built-in tools to customize your own. Then reuse the template for multiple events.
- As of August 2022, 62% of all website traffic comes from people using mobile devices. Make sure your site is mobile-friendly.
- Also ensure it integrates with Google Analytics. Track how visitors interact with your content and make adjustments to draw more visitors and increase conversions.
- The best event websites feature bold, enticing images. When possible, repurpose images showing attendees having a splendid time at previous events.
- Go all in on video to tell your event story. Consider a sizzle reel of past events, messages from keynote speakers, and short blurbs from influencers who will attend your event.
Tool #2: Event email marketing attracts the right audience.
Most marketers agree email is the best channel for promoting events.
Why? Because it works. Email marketing has an incredible return on investment of $36 for every $1 you spend.
While this channel has been around for decades, it remains a strong force. Marketers send 27% more emails today than they did pre-pandemic.
Still, to succeed with this channel, we must continue finetuning how we use it. So let’s look at five event email marketing best practices to power your promotional strategy and lift registrations higher.
Ratchet up personalization.
Show prospects your emails are well worth opening before asking them to register.
Choose a customizable event email marketing For example, Stova offers more than 40 custom fields to help you fill emails with info that speaks to each prospect’s needs.
Did you know people are 26% more likely to open an email with a personalized subject line? Try things like: “Come to our party at IMEX, Jennifer,” or “Please join us in Las Vegas.”
Optimize for mobile.
Bottom line: Make sure your emails are mobile-friendly to avoid losing clicks, sign-ups, and attendance at your event.
Save time with a strategic email marketing template.
Choose a platform that provides proven templates and gives you tools to create your own branded ones. Once you have your template, you can clone and reuse it for multiple events.
The best event marketing emails pack a one-two punch. They feature tried-and-tested layouts AND customize sections to engage different audience segments with relevant, up-to-date content.
Put your brand front and center throughout your campaign. Also, keep styling consistent to make your emails recognizable at-a-glance.
Use multiple touchpoints.
Research shows that five is the ideal number of emails marketers need to send for the highest conversion rates. So get creative and keep emails fresh and engaging.
The best event email marketing strategy calls for customized follow-up based on the prospect’s previous action. Who signed up and needs details on event logistics? Who opened emails but didn’t register? Tailor reminders to different audience segments and improve conversion rates.
Use software with built-in email autoresponder tools. You’ll make it easy to manage everything in one place.
Make sure your post-event email marketing plan includes follow-up to thank attendees to coming, remind them to complete surveys, and invite them to future events.
After you send each email, check analytic reports for click-through, open, and conversion rates.
Determine which audience segments are most engaged (or not). Then focus your efforts where they’ll make the biggest impact. Armed with data-driven insights, you’ll increase registrations and fill your event with the people you want to reach most.
Tool #3: Event app push notifications pump up engagement.
Want attendees to engage with your mobile app before, during, and after your event?
Push notifications are the way to go. These real-time alerts let you send targeted messages to anyone, any time. They keep your event running smoothly and generate revenue, too.
For example, use event push notifications to:
Send critical updates, like telling attendees the cocktail party has been moved from the Great Lawn to Main Ballroom due to rain
Promote happenings at sponsors’ booths to monetize your event
Share enticing offers like meet-and-greets with top influencers
Prompt eventgoers to take quick surveys during your event while content is fresh
Incentivize with gamification to increase participation
- Personalization is key to success. Send messages urging responses to surveys and polls that uncover people’s reasons for attending your event.
- Leverage these insights to deliver targeted notifications, such as inviting new attendees to an exclusive first-time happy hour.
- Why risk letting people get lost in the crowd? Send AI-powered networking notifications instead. Attendees can make the most of their time at events with personalized recommendations to connect with people who share their interests.
- Proximity-based push notifications take engagement up a notch. Imagine your attendee walking through a convention center. She gets a message that prospects on her Hot List are chatting in the coffee bar steps away. Use proximity networking messages to deliver info when and where attendees need it most.
- For best results, make sure your event push notifications are not only personalized. They should also be brief and time-sensitive, convey a sense of urgency, and include a clear call to action for a logical next step.
Tool #4: Digital event signage gives sustainability a boost.
Forget throw-away banners and time-consuming, error-prone manual updates.
Modern display builders make onsite communication a breeze. Digital signs update automatically through turnkey reader board software. And so, attendees get all the essential details instantly.
- Let digital event signage reduce your event footprint and keep everything running smoothly.
- Take advantage of this technology to:
- Share schedule, speaker, and session room changes automatically
- Get attendees excited about trending sessions and activations
- Promote sponsors and exhibitors at just the right time
- Display maps, floor plans, and directional signs to make navigating your event space easy
- Reduce check-in lines with a high-traffic barometer display
- Drive participation in gamification with leaderboards
- Keep attendees engaged with social feeds
- And more
As we mentioned, event communication is the gravity that attracts the right audience and keeps everything in place.
We’ve looked at four modern tech tools and a slew of tips to make communications better and easier for organizers and attendees.
When building the communication plan for your next live event, keep the following best practices in mind:
- All-in-one platforms make it easy to unify branding on attendee communications, from marketing through the onsite experience and event follow-up.
- The best event websites are mobile-friendly, SEO-optimized, and integrated with analytic tools for maximum impact.
- Email marketing templates, analytics, and autoresponder tools save time and lift registration numbers higher.
- AI-powered push notifications help attendees make the most of their time at events.
- Onsite display builders contribute to more sustainable events.
Ready to see how cutting-edge communications technology can enhance attendance and engagement at your next live event? Book a demo with us today.