There are two different ways you can utilize events to build your brand. First, you can work on building your event brand in itself. Or, second, you can work on building your brand through events that get people talking. While in-person events are a must if you want to truly grow your brand, you can also utilize online events, Twitter hashtags and social marketing to create an overall branding plan for your company.
How to Build a Brand Image
When you want a soda, do you instantly turn to Dr. Pepper or Coca-Cola? These two companies have worked to create a brand image, market to a specific demographic and place their brand where people will see it not once, not twice, but over and over again.
Know what the event is about. What are you trying to promote? This might include your tag line, mission statement or even company or event logo. An example of event branding can be seen over at ProBlogger. This website offers an event for bloggers every year in Australia. They’ve branded it as “”the largest and longest running blogging event.”
Darren Rowse, ProBlogger founder, makes it clear that the goal is to help you run a profitable blog. To brand the event, he’s done everything from promoting it via interviews to coming up with a hashtag to get people talking before, during and after the event.
How can you repeat this success with your own events?
When it comes to branding, the little things add up. Make sure you create an event logo and use it on banners, the website, social media and in correspondence. While you don’t want your logo to be an in-your-face image that people get tired of, adding a small logo to the corner of a Top 10 list is perfectly fine.
Create a hashtag and encourage attendees to use it. Ask your event volunteers to use the hashtag when they talk about the upcoming event. Add the hashtag to printed material and your website.
Are event volunteers and workers wearing the same thing? Your team should be easily recognizable both with the color they wear and the logo on the shirt.
Don’t just stop there, though. Create a streamlined look by asking everyone to wear the event shirt, black pants and black shoes, for example.
If you’re trying to build an event brand, then you likely want attendees to return next year. Think about an item you can give away that has your event logo, information about attending next year’s event, and ties into your overall theme and industry.
For example, if the event is for those in the IT industry, perhaps you could offer a mini-USB drive with your event logo and website engraved on it.
Keep the Buzz Going
Another thing you can do to continue to build your event brand is to keep the buzz going even after the event is over. Send attendees a survey to find out what you can improve next year. Then, release statements on social media. For example:
“98% of our attendees loved #BrandEvent2015! They are clamoring for more advanced workshops. Join us in 2016 for twice as many advanced topics!”
While putting on a fabulous event with great workshops, organized registration and fun events is a must, you’ll also want to implant your brand into attendees’ minds, so it stays with them until next year.
When branding your event, think of little things you can do, such as adding the logo to disposable dinnerware, sticking with a theme for each centerpiece, and even creating a custom covering for the front of speaker podiums.
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