Tuesday, August 3, 2010

TV or Internet? Newspaper or Magazine? With thousands of channels available to advertise your event, choosing the right one has become increasingly difficult. This is a major concern as selecting the wrong channel means that your message will not reach your target audience and will hamper your event success.

We've come across a few companies which take event marketing for granted assuming that the event is so cool that people will automatically know about it. Sure, your event could be filled with amazing activities and cool celebrities but if you don't create awareness about the event at least two months before the event (and this means frequent reminders and not just a one-off notice), trust us, no one will be excited enough to attend. Advertising helps to build the hype and the desire for your target audience to attend but the question now is what sort of advertising medium should you opt for?

Here are a few questions you need to ask before selecting a channel for your event:

1. What is your event size?
2. Where is your event located?
3. Do you have a fixed or diverse audience?
4. What is your promotion budget size?

As you answer these questions, you slowly but steadily eliminate channels that will not work for you. For example, if you are organizing a doctor’s conference for doctors practicing in Mumbai, buying a TVC spot on popular channel is both pointless and expensive. You will deplete your budget without seeing an impressive rise in conversion rates. A better and more cost effective channel for a medical event would be a medical magazine.

To simplify your decision-making process further, here is an at-a-glance look at some popular advertising mediums and their pros and cons:

TV – Strengths

1. Versatile medium that uses both sight and sound to communicate
2. Promote events on a national, regional or local level
3. Reach out to selective and diverse markets based on channel choice

TV – Weakness

1. Prime time spots receive maximum viewing audience but are expensive
2. TV ads are short in duration and so, are easy to miss or ignore
3. There are limited spots available
4. Not suitable for event with a set audience e.g. Pilots

Radio – Strengths

1. Promote on a local or regional level
2. Target specific markets or reach large, diverse markets
3. Excellent way to reach commuting audiences

Radio – Weakness

1. Radio ads are short and can be missed easily
2. Each channel has a specific audience and you may have to purchase spots with multiple channels to deliver your message effectively

Newspapers – Strengths

1. Promote on a national, regional or local level to both select and diverse markets
2. Newspapers are published daily and are a great way to generate instant response / action
3. Publish detailed messages
4. Long lasting impact (people keep the entire paper or clip )

Newspapers – Weakness

1. Readers are selective, they might not read the page your ad is on
2. National newspapers are expensive and are not feasible for small or local events

Magazines – Strengths

1. Reach selected markets easily and effectively
2. Large audience (multiple readers read a single magazine)
3. Permanent as readers keep acquired magazines to re-read

Magazines – Weakness

1. Only approximate readership figures available
2. Strict deadlines to place ads
3. Difficult to make changes once ad is placed
4. Reader may forget about ad as magazines are published on a weekly or monthly basis

Internet – Strengths

1. Promote on a global level for a cost effective rate
2. Communicate to selective and diverse audiences easily
3. Interactive Youth friendly medium
4. Instant changes possible at any time

Internet – Weakness

1. Language Barriers
2. Time Differences
3. No very effective to reach a 60+ audience
4. Requires some at least a basic level of computer skills

To summarize, all channels have their pros and cons; ultimately, you need to decide which channel will best promote your event. By choosing the right a channel, you will spend less money and will retain a bigger budget for other essential activities.
-Event Industry News

Which Advertising Medium is Right for your event?

TV or Internet? Newspaper or Magazine? With thousands of channels available to advertise your event, choosing the right one has become incre...

We've been to parties and expos and have brought home our fair share of goodies (half of which are useless).

When searching for corporate souvenirs for your potential clients or guests to bring home, it's usually the usual stuff that gets pushed to you- the thermos, mug, pens, notebooks, badges, umbrella- all stamped with the company logo.

The items mentioned above ARE useful but you can't help but sigh "not another pen..." when you get it. If you ARE considering these items as giveaways, just remember to put a little effort into the design. Adding a little smart humour always helps boost its desirabiltiy.

We found a great blog on tradeshow giveaways on http://deirdrereid.com to help you plan for your next tradeshow giveaway. Here's the summary of the blogpost plus some of our own comments:

A lot of us agree on what we like to take home from a trade show. Shelly Alcorn raised an important consideration — “What about sustainability? Can we give out cool things without just creating more junk?” Jeff Hurt recommended “contacting PPAI, the association for promotional products professionals, for green sustainable and unusual ideas.” Some of the “greener” ideas mentioned were:

Seed packets, unless you have an international meeting. We like handmade paper seed packets (or coasters) that are buried and bloom into flowers. Joe Flowers once saw seeds that grow into “a plant with a one-word slogan on them. Very cool and geeky!”

Bamboo cutting boards with the exhibitor’s logo etched in, very cool.

Reusable shopping bags – by far one of the group’s favorites, they give the vendor a branding opportunity and fit the green requirement of many.

It’s understood that this is the vendor’s opportunity to brand themselves, but we want good design. This is a chance to associate your brand with utility and style. We don’t want an ugly logoed coffee mug, but we will take a nicely designed one, perhaps with a discreet logo on the bottom.

Dan Scheeler likes “how #tech10 posted booth giveaways in advance – admit that will influence which vendors I visit.” Most of us don’t read the exhibitor postcards and direct mail we receive before a trade show – it usually goes straight to the trash unless it has stand-out design.

Here’s what else we like in the food/beverage department:

Nalgene-type water bottles
Cork screws or bottle openers (like the kind you can keep on a keychain)
Neoprene lunch bags
Wine cooler bags
Insulated travel coffee mugs
Nice coffee mugs
Drinks, or bottles with custom labels. Good for speakers too.
Mints, power bars, bottled water and good candy help us get through the long days.
If giveaways can double as a gift for kids, it makes it home, like rubber duckies, stuffed animals, even caricatures. There is the risk that these gifts will be lost in the chaos of kids’ rooms, but parents like the thoughtfulness of handy souvenirs.

Personal items that we like:

Lip balm
Hand sanitizer in little bottles (below 100ml) so that it can be brought on board a plane
Eyeglass cleaning cloths — and for a boomer audience, how about magnifier reading glasses for those show floor maps with really tiny print
Attractive or cool lanyards to reuse at other shows/conferences
Magnetic picture frames
Digital photos with friends, adding a frame is even better
Retractable headphone/earbuds
Golf tees and ball
Keychain flashlights
Brightly colored luggage tags — however, luggage handle wraps got a thumbs-down.
Small travel mouse with retractable cord
iPod wraps
Nice messenger or gym bags without any tacky branding
Drawstring backpacks
Pens get mixed reviews. Pens with a thumb drive are okay. Bobblehead pens are big movers at his booth.

Shelly summed up the pen issue, “Nobody wants a pen with your company name on it – I mean NOBODY.” Some people can never have enough pens but if you’re doing pens, try to make them cool.

Thumbdrives are popular with some, but others say they already have too many.

Other popular office items are:

Lanyards with a business card holder attached.
Headshots (useful for social media)
USB hubs
Tape measure or ruler
“The dreaded stress balls” – some like them, many don’t. I think they’re wasteful and will still be around in 2199 when we’re all in the matrix.

T-shirts get mixed reviews. Ray van Hilst said, “Lame t-shirts are bad. Funny or cool ones generate WOM.” That’s word of mouth, as in marketing, a major consideration for any giveaway decisions. Other advice: have a mix of sizes so they actually fit attendees and don’t get relegated to the rag pile; keep logos to a minimum, we don’t want to be your walking advertisements; if you make it funny, we might wear it.

Best Events designs t-shirts for only RM150 per design, we can print them for you as well. View post here.

Bathrobes and toiletries are great too.

Ray reminded us that sometimes “an experience counts as a giveaway too. Chair massages get people to stop and relax,” or hand “massages.”

Personalized art pieces are wildly popular especially when attendees can watch them being made.

Peter Romeo told me about a conference that gave attendees Express Mail postage to ship their conference binders home. It was a sponsored perk.

Experiences, rather than giveaways, might be a more sustainable option too. Mercy Malaysia did a ball toss game at a tradeshow recently. Attendees pay RM1 to throw a ball into a hole which has a prize. If it misses, the money just goes to their fund and the attendee still goes off happy for being able to contribute.

What about having a raffle for a big prize rather than giving away? Most of us like that option. We’ve seen raffles for an iPod, Wii and GPS, and would like to see Kindles and iPads as prizes.

At one booth if you guessed the correct number of M&Ms in a jar, you could win a Snoopy lunchbox. In another you won prizes playing Wheel of Fortune.

Best and Worst Event giveaways

We've been to parties and expos and have brought home our fair share of goodies (half of which are useless). When searching for corporat...

Monday, August 2, 2010

An invitation card sets the mood by using the right play of words and the way it looks. It builds hype and excitement. However, with people being more conscious about the environment, an alternative to printing cards on paper would be to send e-cards instead.

Your guests know what to expect at a party from the invites that they receive. They can prepare themselves for a formal or informal event. This piece of published and decorated card carries a message and shows a host’s goal in relation with a certain event. For extremely important occasions like marriages, the degree of customization and the diversity of party invite ideas are really in depth.

It helps that a dresscode is stated as well. View post on the various dresscodes here.

From birthdays to anniversaries and vacations, you can take you pick of party invite ideas from extremely countless Internet sites. The design, the colors, the motifs and the personal information alter seriously.

For casual events, selecting something nice and honest for the theme of the party is sufficient. You do not want anything further than that when inviting your pals and comrades to a cocktail party, a dinner or a Halloween party.

The entire purpose here is to do something special pleasing, funny and entertaining. This is what a party is all about, and how you write the invite should definitely render that message.

Not all parties need a professionally designed card. For kids parties for example, a simple DIY design is sufficient. Best Events creates basic e-cards for free when our services are hired for Kids Parties.

When getting a professional to design your card, you can help prepare samples of what you want and what you don't want. Tell him what kind of pictures you would like to see, what fonts to use, how to adjust the colors and design to the theme of the party and much more.

For parties with smaller groups of people, you can opt for something more personal. We recommend pop-up cards from scissorpapercraft.blogspot.com (image above). Just lovely!

Party invitations

An invitation card sets the mood by using the right play of words and the way it looks. It builds hype and excitement. However, with people ...


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