Ecommerce is a massive channel for product-centric businesses. The eCommerce economy is expected to continue its upward trajectory without any signs of stopping.
As an entrepreneur, this opportunity for success and sustainability is exciting and promising all at once.
However, there is some friction to being successful with eCommerce business.
You can bust your budget into a million tiny pieces by getting stuck in the rut that a large number of eCommerce startups fall into trying to balance ad spend against profit.
There is a better way to promote your eCommerce startup. Multiple ways, actually, and if executed properly, they are more sustainable than building a business that is driven by ad campaigns.
10 Ways to Use Successful Events to Increase Ecommerce Sales
It doesn’t matter if you are staging a party to introduce a new product or exhibiting at a trade show, your events are capable of being a valuable sales and marketing tool.
1. Decide on a focal point
You should provide a focal point for your event that serves as center stage for your event.
This could be anything- a few remarks from the founder, a ceremony featuring the product, even a partnership with a charitable organization.
Focal points give attendees a reason to stay and engage with your event.
Provide a ‘memento’ of the occasion (event-specific swag) and some printed materials. Alert the local media to your event with both pre and post-event publicity.
If you are going to approach the press, you should make sure that you have a press kit assembled to hand out at the event and mailed to non-attending press.
2. Understand goals
Establish key performance indicators upfront so that you’ll be in a position to clearly see if your event was successful or not and what you should prioritize during future events.
Once you’ve decided on what you hope to achieve with this event, you can begin to build your event around achieving your goals.
3. Create a marketing plan
Before you even start planning an event, you need to understand what this event can bring in terms of revenue to your organization.
Create an effective marketing plan to fully understand what features and aspects of an event will be the most profitable and lucrative for your business.
By creating a marketing plan, you gain a better understanding of how to gain increased attention and focus by highlighting the successful aspects to attendees.
4. Determine why prospective customers would want to attend
Why would a customer choose to show up at your event?
Take a deep look at what your brand values truly are. What sets you apart?
Your job is to determine whether or not this can be turned into a motivating catalyst to event attendees.
While it is fantastic to be able to have key differentiators that make you stand out from the competition, you need to have a thorough understanding of what the key take away from the event you’re planning.
This will help you build more effective promotions to draw enough people’s attention.
5. Design an event inside of an event
By creating qualitative experiences for both the individual customer and a large crowd, it provides businesses with an opportunity to educate prospective customers on the quality of their products.
The face-to-face interaction gives businesses a new way to interact with their target market, establishing trust and building the relationships you need to close sales.
6. Convert web users into attendees
It should be at the forefront of your prospective customer’s decision-making process in regards to your event.
One bad web site can jeopardize all of your hard work you’ve put into crafting a successful event.
When someone first notices your organization’s event, their perception is drawn from emotions.
They are looking for what experience you’re offering and if it’s worth the money they’ll spend to attend.
Your site can help prospective attendees visualize themselves at the event if you lead with:
- Strong imagery that’s aspirational and helps people envision what it’s like to attend
- Social evidence that other people have enjoyed previous events or their colleagues are going to attend.
- Interesting, compelling copy that informs. Avoid creating more questions and place key event details front and center.
- A clear call-to-action that makes it easy for people to purchase tickets to your event.
7. Use social media to its full potential
Yes, that means you need to understand social media outside of Facebook Ads Manager.
To gain a better understanding of organic social media, you should become comfortable with using a content marketing strategy.
Make the best use of the social media platforms that mean the most for your organization by promoting the event before, during, and after.
Create a short, memorable hashtag for the event and develop an effective social media strategy for the channels that matter most to your target market.
On the big day, schedule status updates and make use of your ad skills to advertise your event to your target audience.
Directly engaging with your target audience and attendees will create a beneficial experience for all involved- your organization included.
8. Place the customer experience front and center
On the big day, your attention should be centered directly on the customer’s experience.
From the moment your attendees enter your event, you need to be on your toes and ensuring that they have a positive experience with your event (and your brand).
Make sure that everything runs as smooth as possible by keeping attendees in the know with great communication, clear signage, short lines, and providing an experience that they want to talk about.
9. Hire a professional photographer
Hiring a professional photographer is a great idea for a couple of reasons:
- To record the event and get publicity photos that can be used to decorate offices.
- To take photos of clients or customers with any officials or celebrities at your event.
- Post-event, you can send these photos to your customers with the accompanying letters. This helps build goodwill and can help improve the relationship and close the sale.
10. Maximize your ROI
When an event is over, it is easy to think that the work is over- but it’s really just beginning!
Don’t put your most recent attendees on the backburner. Be sure to follow up with them while the event is still top of mind and don’t forget to encourage them to take action.
This is the most effective way that you can maximize your ROI and meet the key performance indicators you set at the beginning of your planning.
If you are unsure of how to follow up with your attendees, consider what the main thing that drives customers to connect with your business.
If you want to sell more products, give attendees the royal treatment and engage with them by offering exclusive offers during and following your events.
Looking to drive customer loyalty? Provide early-bird discounts or codes for customers that purchase tickets for multiple events.
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Kristen Bowie is a marketing obsessive & advocate for the knowledge economy. When she’s not writing for Qwilr, she’s hanging out with her two goats & painting.