MUNICH – XING Events, the event industry’s expert for event marketing, attendee management, and ticketing, publishes its “Event marketing research 2017 – What are the go-to marketing strategies of the industry, and how can they be optimised?”. During a large-scale survey, XING Events surveyed both national and international organisers and attendees on this topic. The goal of the research was to find out which activities are used by the organisers and which are on top of their list. As a direct counterpart to the organiser perspective, the research also analyses how event attendees search, find, and choose events. Based on the survey findings, the research provides organisers with handy and easy-to-follow tips on how to use digital activities effectively to further optimise their marketing.
Digitalisation has a firm spot in the event marketing world
There is no doubt about it: digital activities bring success. More than two thirds of organisers state to have achieved their goals thanks to digital channels. In this context, attracting more attendees (84 percent) and increasing the events’ profile (72 percent) take the top ranks. These results are motivation enough for 64 percent of organisers to make even more use of digitalisation in the future. Consensus on the one hand, a large gap between what attendees want and what organisers offer on the other.
Attendees too have arrived in the digital era for events. When it comes to selecting the channels however, organisers and attendees are taking rather different paths in 2017. Besides their website, organisers are strongly focusing on established communication channels like email marketing (76 percent) and social media marketing (73 percent). Traditional advertising activities like print ads trailfar behind (47 percent).
Personal recommendations from friends and acquaintances are the way to go for 66 percent of attendees when choosing events. Email and event newsletters are right behind with 59 percent indicating the effectiveness of these methods among the organisers’ target group. “These results nevertheless clearly indicate that viral marketing will be an essential ingredient for an ideal marketing mix in the future”, Prof. Dr. Cai-Nicolas Ziegler states as one of the recommendations for event organisers.
On the other hand, organisers and attendees are on the same page about updates – more than half of organisers and attendees agree that digital event marketing simplifies exchanging information with each other. Attendees (62 percent) would like to further this improved exchange of information via social media groups. In turn, organisers seem to not (yet) recognise this potential – a mere nine percent of the organisers use this channel for communication and attendee retention.
Bottom line for organisers
“By using various channels like email marketing, organisers are on the right track”, Ziegler sums up. “However, they still need to catch up when it comes to innovative marketing activities – especially viral channels, making use of influencers and content marketing.”
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