Right now is a difficult time for those diagnosed with the COVID-19, hospital workers, event industry professionals, and the global economy.
When it comes to event professionals, events are being canceled across the nation and leading to a loss for businesses, salespeople, and small business owners. As we practice social distancing, there is a small silver lining that allows small business owners to work on things they may have been putting off. For many, marketing falls into that category.
So today, I am going to outline ways you can market your business from home.
Reconnect on the phone or through Instagram with clients and other business owners.
Write a list of businesses or people you’ve been meaning to connect with. For cake companies, this could be caterers or for event planners, this could be venues. Start the list and gather contact information but consider reaching out when things are less crazed.
Start a podcast
When it comes to marketing, podcasts are the place to be to reach new people. Start your podcast today using only your smartphone. A quick Google search will show you how.
Write a blog
Or write a few! If you already keep up regularly with a blog, then this is a good time to get ahead of the game. Figure out upcoming topics and start the writing process. Regularly writing a blog is great for SEO so if you don’t already have one, now is the time.
Start an email campaign
Get going on that MailChimp or Contstant Contact account and start building your email list. That leads me to my next point...
Create a freebie
Write a freebie that provides valuable information in exchange for emails to start building up your list.
Map out your next month of social media posts
Use this time to create graphics for your story and timeline, find interesting and helpful articles, organize photos, and write the copy for upcoming posts.
Spend time engaging with other accounts on social media
Spend time each day commenting, following, and DMing relevant accounts to grow your following and your connections. Don’t forget to show love to your current followers.
Learn something new
Use Hubspot or LinkedIn Learning to develop your skills. This can be anything from writing blogs or how to write email subjects that convert.
Update your website
Be honest, when was the last time you looked over your website copy? It’s possible some of that information is outdated or missing new information. Do your pictures still look like you? Time to update!
Please continue to support small businesses as we get through this trying time. While this list is all about what you can do for your business right now, don’t forget to take care of yourself, your family, and your health.
Do you want to book more events at your venue? I’m guessing if you clicked on this blog your answer is a resounding “yes!” I’ve outlined some ways to gain traction to your venue and ultimately gain clients.
I hope these venue marketing tips help and if you have any questions, please reach out.
Thanks for reading!
Marketing Mix by Michelle is a hospitality marketing firm that services event venues and their preferred partners in Philadelphia and beyond. Michelle started her marketing business after working in the hospitality and event industry for several years both on the floor and behind the scenes on marketing efforts.
Eventually, she merged her talents to start her business and has loved every minute of it. If you need venue marketing or hospitality marketing for your business, let's connect.
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Marketing is unique for each industry. It plays into who the customer is, what they like, and where they look for products and services.
When it comes to marketing for weddings we:
While referrals can be high, event and wedding professionals rely on new customers to fill up the dates in their calendar with weddings.
So how can you reach these new potential customers?
You have to be on the cutting edge of marketing, be where the brides and grooms are and create a connection with them.
Luckily, I am in touch with the wedding industry and can tell you where to find them. Over 70% of engaged couples use social media and online resources for wedding inspiration. This means they are:
Meaning, event industry professionals NEED to be in those areas as well and be consistent with posting in order to be relevant in a flooded market.
I can’t recommend being consistent enough.
This is how to beat the dreaded algorithms and continuously reach brides and grooms across many platforms.
The more places these potential clients see you, the more likely they are to trust you. The more of your brand’s personality they see, the more emotionally connected they are and the more likely they are to choose your company over another.
So I have to ask. Is your event company’s marketing ready this engagement season to connect with couples who are HUNGRY to find the perfect wedding professionals and venue?
If not, check out my content calendar for wedding and event businesses and see for yourself how to save your valuable time and create marketing that will increase your inquiries.
Word of mouth? Check.
Online search? Check.
Paid advertising? Check.
What about Instagram as a way to target leads?
I remember when I first started in the industry and Instagram was still about a year old.
My boss at the time (of a wedding and event-based business of course) questioned why I was adamant our company needed an Instagram account.
Eventually, I convinced him and we created an account which I regularly managed. It became a landing page for engaged couples to see our work in a more authentic way, as well as our work that brides and vendors, tagged us in.
People still question why Instagram is needed for businesses but I know the truth and if you’re reading this you likely do too.
Truth is, I’ve had about 30% of my leads come from Instagram and have worked long-term with many of those leads who became my clients.
Why has that worked for me? Because I see Instagram as a massive online networking group
Content may be king but engagement is the queen
Engagement is equally important to content. I don’t mean the engagement your post is receiving, I mean how your Instagram account is connecting with, replying to, liking, and commenting on others' posts.
I suggest setting a timer on your phone for a minimum of 10 minutes a day and during that time comment thoughtful things on other’s posts or as replies to their story.
Comment based on the copy written in their post or on the photo and again, be thoughtful. Highlight whatever it is you liked or related to in their posts.
Do this to your current followers and other relevant accounts for your industry.
In the social media world, everyone wants to be heard. Become the one that listens.
Other Instagram tips:
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Facebook groups are nothing new, but they are being used more frequently and are an excellent way to reach your target market.
In this blog post, you’ll discover why you should join Facebook groups as well as how to use them for your business.
In 2018 Mark Zuckerberg , the creator of Facebook, formally announced that the platform is making the switch from promoting businesses to promoting groups in order to create a deeper sense of community amongst users.
To get in on the action, you can simply join existing groups or start your own.
Facebook groups are established to bring together people who have commonalities and similar interests. Within these groups, you can boost awareness of your business as well as establish yourself as an expert.
This will naturally drive customers to you.
The first step is to find relevant Facebook groups. This means searching by keywords and locations to find your demographic.
Once you have joined several Facebook groups, you can regularly search the page (and make sure your push notifications are on!) to respond to questions members post. You can also link your reply to a page on your site, a blog post, a freebie you’re offering, or a specific product as long as it relates to their question.
This is a highly targeted form of marketing
Which will directly reach consumers which you already know are interested in the industry you service.
Creating your own Facebook group means that you are the moderator for the group and therefore your business is at the forefront. However, keep in mind the goal is to create a community so be mindful not to promote your business, rather figure out how your product or service addresses a need and then make a group around it.
When creating your group, use a key-word in the title that others who are interested in that topic would be using to search for it. This is similar to using a google search.
So no matter if you are in a Facebook group you’re a member of, or the administrator of the one you created, be sure to be an active participant and provide value to other members.
Good luck and if you consistently are part of Facebook groups, we know your business will reap the benefits!
By now, we all know the importance of having a content calendar. Your brand must keep on top of holidays, promotions, and events. A content calendar is your way of laying out the necessary posts so you don't miss anything. Halloween is the beginning of the holiday season (although stores would like to think it's sooner...I saw Christmas decor this year before the back-to-school display was taken down!)
Decorate your Online Presence
You can decorate your profile picture on social media to represent the holiday. You could carve your logo into a pumpkin or make a graphic of your logo wearing a witches hat. Similar to how brick-and-motor stores decorate their storefronts, you can decorate your online presence! Don't forget, you can update your website to reflect the Holiday as well with images, special offers, and more.
I love a good pun. Who doesn't? That's a rhetorical question because I'm 100% sure the answer is an astounding "everyone". There are so many good Halloween puns out there so you can check them out on google or get creative and make up your own. Bonus points if you an come up with a pun that is unique to your business AND Halloween.
This year, no tricks JUST treat. Offer your customers a promotion specific to the holiday. Use an offer code such as "Halloween17" and create a spooky graphic to post across all platforms. As always with promotions, be sure to include an end date. For this one, it should be 11:59 pm on October 31st or November 1st.
Host a Photo Contest
Have your customers send you images of them in their Halloween costumes with your product (or logo if you have a service). It's a fun way to get people involved and to get that promotion on their social accounts. With any contest, don't forget the prize!
Show off your Costume
Show off your costume or at least your product surrounded by candy corn and other seasonal decor items on your page. Incorporate questions like "WITCH of our staff's costumes did like best?" Getting customers involved in the company and brand is the start of building a loyal following.
Utilize Pop Culture
When you can combine pop culture references, the intended holiday, and your business, now you've reached a whole new level of marketing. Getting potential customers involved, laughing, and relating to your products or services is how to turn them from a potential customer into a customer. Tide did an amazing example of this when the remake of the movie Carrie, based on a novel by the king of horror himself, Stephen King, was coming out in 2013. The brand created a spoof of the movie using Vine and the product-appropriate tagline, “Stains better be scared.” We're scared by how good that tagline is!
No matter what holiday or big event is coming up, make sure your business is recognizing it! Get customers involved and have fun with it. We want to know: what is your advice for mixing business with holiday pleasure? Comment below!
One of the best ways to utilize social media is a create a campaign. This will get followers involved and ultimately spread word of your business. Sometimes its hard to come up with ideas of our own so it can be good to look at what the big businesses are doing and put your own spin on it!
My Instagram campaign
Hi there, it's me, Michelle! Welcome to my blog. It’s a deeper look into my business and marketing tips for you.