How can you attract crowds to your local event? If you are a small business owner and can’t afford to spend thousands of dollars on online advertisement and social media, these tips are for you.

1. Make your guests comfortable   

The best way to ensure people enjoy your event is to put them at ease before they even arrive. Although it may seem basic, many organizers choose the wrong place at the wrong time. You are the one investing your money and effort, so why not aim for the best results?

Make sure that it’s not vacation time and that there are no major events in your industry to distract your audience. Pick a venue that is easy to reach if you don’t want to spend your days dealing with a logistics nightmare. Check what your competitors are doing and, if they’re organizing a similar event, it may be best to reschedule or reconceptualize your event.

2. A picture is worth a thousand words    

If you’re planning to promote your event online, include eye catching, high-quality pictures because social media users associate the quality of the photo with the quality of the event itself. Your ad has fractions of a second to capture a potential visitors’ attention because they scroll through their feeds very quickly. According to neuromarketing, we make our decision before we even have a chance to think about it.

3. Make the most of targeting 

Social media offers powerful targeting tools, but using them correctly is not that simple if you’re not a professional. For example, you have to understand what’s behind the interests your potential attendees list online. Even if you hire an expert to promote your event online, you still have to research your audience, define their interests, and find out what other events they might be attending.

Mistakes happen. For example, one of our clients picked very high criteria, niche audience to promote his yoga tour. After we helped identify his potential clients and develop the right messages to reach them, he was finally been able to sell out his tour.

4. Start early

Start preparing to promote your event in advance. To make a purchase, people have to see the information or advertisement a few times. Although your reputation as an event organizer, or the participation of a star guest speaker or celebrity will attract attention, you can’t rely only on these to boost attendance.

In the universe of digital advertising, any online ad takes time to get attention. If you don’t allocate enough time for your campaign, you’ll miss your chance to make the most of it. For example, after launching a promo, we analyze statistics on a daily basis and eliminate audiences which show low efficiency. This allows us to optimize the budget, target the best audience and, if necessary, quickly introduce any necessary changes to the advertising strategy.

5. Convert “likes” to sales  

If somebody clicks on your online ad, they are interested, so why don’t they buy? There are plenty of reasons, including time, place, product quality, or even a bad landing page that doesn’t provide enough information or looks overwhelming. You can use features like retargeting or lead generation to convert users’ interest into attendees.

6. Identify the right social network

YouTube and Facebook are the most popular networks among event organizers but if you’re aiming for a younger audience, it’s better to pick Snapchat or Instagram. Advertising on LinkedIn is  a good tool to promote business events and, if you want to attract a female audience, you could use Pinterest.

It’s important to remember that storytelling and targeting can only promote but not create a great event. The fraudulent Fyre Festival is a good example. You are responsible for your reputation: it’s important to meet the expectations of your attendees. We all leave digital traces these days. One deception can cost you, and the information will remain visible online forever.

By Vasily Voropaev, founder of WhatWhere.World https://whatwhere.world/business/, an innovative event promotion service for small businesses and event organizers that knows everything about your audience. WWW creates advertising posts, launches your campaign and reports every penny of your budget.

Event online stock photo by Rawpixel.com/Shutterstock