You’re creating an event to engage customers, boost up your brand, and make an impact on your community. All of these things are achievable — if people go to your event.

Event marketing can be an enormous source of angst. For one thing, you’re competing against a lot of other events. In fact, an Eventbrite survey of 1,200 event professionals across the United States and Canada revealed that “increased competition” is the biggest trend affecting event creators today.

So how can you get people to choose your event? And how can you use that attendance to benefit your business?

Knowing what other event creators are doing with their event marketing helps you benchmark your efforts and focus on the most effective tactics. Here’s more data on how you can use event marketing to grow your business this year.

1. Reach new customers with your event marketing

The number one challenge for event creators right now is reaching new attendees. So where are event marketers finding success?

Last year, Facebook and Instagram were the top social platforms for outreach, and that’s probably not going to change anytime soon. The two most effective tactics on those platforms were organic social media (53%) and paid ads (25%).

These event marketing tactics work well together, too. If you publish your event to Facebook, Facebook’s robust search algorithms will surface it to the most geographically relevant users. Amplify this effect by using paid advertising to reach targeted groups of users that match your dream demographics.

2. Connect with your current customers through events

Events are also about connecting with your existing customers and loyal followers of your brand. Social media is your key tool here as well, because it engages your existing community leading up to and following an event. For instance:

  • You post on social. People find out about your event.
  • They go to your event, and have a great time. They post about it on social.
  • The buzz on social builds beyond your own posts. Your brand momentum soars.

For this reason, nearly half of event creators name social media marketing as one of the top three most effective marketing tactics they use. Email marketing is another. Use email not just to announce events but to engage customers around those events. Send emails to build up excitement, and to follow up for feedback.

3. Reach people who can’t attend

With livestreamed video, events boost your business far beyond attendees. You can only reach a certain number of people at the event itself. But with video broadcast on Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube, that number is limitless. That’s why 40% of brands use livestreaming to extend their events beyond physical attendees and carry forward their brand messages.

Why live? Viewers tend to pay attention to live video 8x longer than recorded video, and video rewards brands with a 97% increase in intent to buy. Livestreaming parts of your event brings your brand to a much larger population of potential customers.

4. Partner with other brands for a bigger footprint

Sponsors and brand partners don’t just help you foot the bill for your event. They also amplify your brand.

Remember, thought, that when you align with another business to around an event, their reputation reflects on your own. For this reason, 29% of event creators struggle with securing the right sponsors. When you hitch your star to another brand, it can impact your business far beyond the day of the event.

Be sure other businesses have the same objectives and brand characteristics as your own before investing in the relationship. Then, make sure they’re drawing their own audience to your event, so you can attract new business.

5. Get to know your target audience better

The people who come to your event feed you rich insight into your customers’ preferences and demographics. There are at least three ways to gather customer data from your events:

  1. Registration data from your event-ticketing software yields valuable information about who your attendees are
  2. Customize your event registration forms to ask custom questions you’re curious about
  3. Send follow-up surveys to event-goers to gather even more insight

The more information you glean from attendees, the more you find out about your customer habits, needs, and desires.

Events help build your business in ways both obvious and subtle. From attracting new customers to learning more about the ones you already have, there are many advantages to a well-executed event, and your event marketing is the avenue to maximizing your return on events.

For more up-to-date benchmarks from the events industry, read Eventbrite’s Pulse Report: 2019 Event Industry Trends.

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Rachel is a writer for Eventbrite, where she regularly interviews organizers of the country's most popular events, from massive music festivals to small food & drink gatherings. She's a live music lover, a foodie, and a big fan of smiles.