It’s quite a wonderful time to be alive. With all the possibilities that technology can offer, the world is smaller than ever, and that is undoubtedly good news for the marketer or influencer. With clever use of online platforms and social media, it is more than possible to spread a message that will spread far and wide and reach audiences anywhere with a secure internet connection.
Which begs the question: why would there still be a need for an actual physical event? After all, space has been redefined so dramatically that one can mark out space in a variety of fashions as long as you are creative enough. In this article, I will make the case for an event, and why you, as a marketer, need to have one in your marketing mix.
Blink of an Eye
It is absolutely true that social media or online platforms give you access to a potentially unlimited number of audiences. A video that goes viral, for instance, is a quick way of getting your brand, message or product “out there”. But we shouldn’t ignore the side effects of these trends either. Think about any “viral” video that truly had a lifespan that extended past a fortnight (if you’re lucky). A culture that allows the short bursts of information to be an overnight hit also caters to an audience with an increasingly short attention span. It is difficult for marketers to ensure that they will have prolonged success with their campaigns and that they will remain in the public consciousness for an extended period of time. This is where an event comes in handy. A scheduled event provides a focal point to your marketing efforts. It means that all your advertisements or publicity campaigns now have a “point”. Imbuing your stories with cliffhangers give audiences a sense of anticipation and with an event planned in the future, you have a higher chance of keeping them emotionally invested for a longer period of time.
A Human Face To Marketing
If there is one thing that living in the 21st century has taught us, it is to never underestimate the power of the human touch. It has often been speculated that John F. Kennedy beat Richard Nixon in the presidential elections because TV made the physical appearance of a candidate important. It is then somewhat ironic that technological advancements have meant that many corporations now retreat behind their apps and become essentially faceless.
Successful companies, however, nevertheless know how important visibility is. And what better way to do this than by having a live event. Your audiences, clients and customers are given the chance to attach a face to the product and that goes a long way in securing brand loyalty and sales.
The human touch also includes different people to meet each other in the flesh. We all know the success stories of “blind date” collaborations where partners meet on internet forums and a superstar start up, erm, starts. Realistically, though, the best way for networking to be done is still by people meeting each other in person. Unsurprisingly, I would say that the best way to facilitate these encounters is at events with well-designed spaces and programs to allow for these hook-ups. A crucial but oft-neglected aspect of marketing is through the word-of-mouth. Having your guests and clients converse indirectly aids this cause. Furthermore, if your product is awesome and your event well-organized, you can be sure to reap the rewards of these encouraged interactions.
Even the least-observant of us would have noticed that the 21st century hasn’t been very kind to content producers. Music, film, photography or art that is available essentially, if illegally, public property. You may well be producing the best content history has ever seen, and it may even be the most viral video ever, but it is difficult to own it and maximize profit streams from these. You’ll see a trend in the music industry where most of the money is made through merchandizing and ticket sales for live concerts.
There is a lesson to be had here and it does suggest that for your marketing efforts to explore and exploit the most potent revenue streams, having an event is a useful thing to have.
There are of course many different reasons why any company would want to have an event. In this article, I’ve chosen to explore why, from a marketing standpoint, the hassle of organizing an event is a worthwhile devil to dance. It culminates all that you hope to achieve and gives it even more of an added value monetarily.