Effective engagement is all about serving targeted communications to the right audience at the right time. Obviously, knowing your audience as well as knowing what makes them tick is the key to being a successful marketer for your event. Since an event’s potential attendee base usually belongs to a well defined vertical or industry, you may feel that you know them well. But is that really the case?
The term ‘audience’ can be misleading because it categorizes a large body of people by a fairly narrow set of attributes. Most audiences are comprised of people from different age groups, different professional/social/cultural milieu and often with varying interests and motivations. Though they may have some crucial characteristics in common, a one-size-fits-all engagement strategy will probably fail in mobilizing different segments of your audience.
To really understand what makes your audience tick, marketers should create nuanced audience profiling strategies. Here are some techniques that can help you do this successfully.
1. Get deeper demographics data
Go beyond collecting only basic info from attendees, such as their gender, title and organization. When attendees register to attend your event, build a better understanding of their professional aspirations by asking for additional information such as certifications, technical knowledge, educational requirements, buying authority, and more. Ask for their key goals and motivations in attending your event. Consider why your event matters to them and how you can make their lives more successful. Mine digital data to analyze their networking and purchasing preferences. How do they identify potential and matched sellers while planning for their participation? How much time do they spend in an exhibitor’s booth on average?
2. Evaluate preferred social networks and groups
Leverage paid, as well as organic campaigns, to identify the channels on which your audience is active. Build surveys to learn how they heard about your event, who recommended your brand and on what platform. Sharing anecdotes about how your event helped your existing audience base can help engage newer audiences on social channels. Also pay close attention to the emotional sentiment expressed by your online audience while reacting and responding to content posted by your team.
3. Get competitive intel
Ask your engaged audience directly about other brands and events with whom they interact. Tune into news, conversations, debates and controversies that directly or indirectly involve and affect your industry, and hence your audience. This will help you gain a better appreciation of the strategies, campaigns, and messaging that appeals to your audience base, and help you improve your own communications to engage them better.
4. Identify influencers
Monitor social chatter, blog posts and news reports to identify the players who are the key sentiment generators for your brand and whether their tone is positive, neutral or negative. Engage them to strengthen your relationship with them, as well as their followers. If there’s a misperception about your brand that you need to correct, this exercise may help you do just that.
Ultimately, the power lies with the audience, and marketers need to constantly work on improving the relevancy of their message to improve its effectiveness.
More to explore:
- Social Photo Booths Enthrall Audiences Across Leading Events
- How to Educate Your Attendees about Valuable Planning Tools
- Four Tips to Engage Your Millennial Audience