Low Budget Event Marketing
If you’re like most event organisers, one of the biggest challenges you probably face when running an event is creating an effective marketing strategy. Most events have small teams and everyone in that team ends up doing a little bit of everything.
Like most event organisers, you probably don’t have the luxury of having a dedicated social media team religiously going through various channels ensuring plenty of engagement. Nor do you have huge budgets to spend on adverts and campaigns.
Instead, you have to get creative in making the most out of what budget you have and ensure you maximise the return on your spend. The end goal is usually the same — to spend as little as possible, for as little as possible effort — yet still sell more tickets.
It can be a tricky one to get right but not impossible! Here are some of our top low budget marketing tips for your event.
Collect and Understand Your Data
It’s likely that you’re marketing on several different channels, whether that’s email, digital advertising or various social media platforms. All these channels can provide you with essential data that tells you who’s looking at your event and what’s working.
Reviewing that data as frequently as possible is essential in building an understanding about who you’re marketing to and who your potential attendees might be. Understanding which marketing channels are working best and who’s engaging with that marketing means that you can tailor your marketing budget to where you’re seeing the biggest return on investment (ROI).
To learn how to be more efficient with your budget, to work out who to target and where to target them, do the following:
- Set up tracking links to your post. Tracking links are the best way to see where people came from when they found your event listing/website. Bitly offer a great free service where you can customise the link and track not only how many people have clicked on the link but which social channel they came from and where in the world they’ve clicked from. They offer a paid service which offers more features, but for basic link tracking their free service is perfect!
- Look at how your social media is performing. All social media channels offer ‘insights’ into how people engage with your posts. You can look at views, likes and shares which tend to come as standard. Some platforms also offer you insights into link clicks as well as profile clicks. If you run a business account on some social media channels you can even check the ages, gender and time of day when your posts receive the most engagement.
Refine Which Social Media Channels Are Used
There’s a number of social media channels available for you to market your event. Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, Pinterest — the list goes on. Every one of these channels is both time and cost consuming. Once you’ve gathered your data, you’ll be able to make a more informed decision about which social media channels work best for your event.
The best way to make your event marketing budget go further is to only fund in the channels that are going to work best for you. For example, if you’re running a music event you should probably throw marketing on Linkedin out the window! Or if you’re running a fashion event, Instagram is the best platform to showcase all of your great visual content.
If your budget is limited pick just a couple of social media channels – where you’re already seeing greater engagement and focus on those. If you’re unsure which platform is working best for you go back to step one and look at the data from the platform you’re already using. Look back over time to see if your engagement on some platforms has grown or dropped.
Automate Your Social Media Post
A great way to save you time and money with your social media posts is using automation tools. Automating your marketing posts for your events will help you by reducing the amount of time spent manually managing your campaigns, meaning you can be more productive and improve the content that goes out.
There are plenty of free tools that can help you with this:
- Buffer – With Buffer’s free service you can schedule multiple posts to be automatically posted at a time you decide across multiple platforms. It works across Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Instagram. There is a pro version of Buffer, however, if you’re looking to save those pennies to reinvest in your event the free version can offer you everything you need.
- Planoly – Planoly is purely an Instagram automation tool but it does have some other powerful free features. You can plan and schedule your posts as well as looking at basic stats from the previous week or 30 days. Another cool feature of Planoly is that you can also grab stock images or other accounts images directly through the platform to share on your own feed. So if you’re running low on content you have the option of ‘regramming’ others’ content to bolster yours. There are multiple paid-for accounts but the free version should be more than enough to get you going
Reach Out To Partners and Influencers
Sponsors, vendors and even your attendees all can be a part of your marketing team. Discover ways to engage with them on social media and reach out to their fans and followers as well. This way you can expand your reach to those who may also be interested in your event.
The best people to reach out to in order to build engagement are influencers — these guys are the pros of social media. We aren’t saying to reach out to huge famous celebrities who can be incredibly expensive to have promote you. Look out for ‘micro-influencers’: those that fit your niche and have a smaller yet more targeted following. These are the influencers that are perfect to market your event to and get behind you.
Marketing budgets can be a nightmare, especially when you’re running a small event and you’d rather be spending the money investing in your event. Whilst you can’t eliminate all marketing costs, we hope these tips will help you save a bit of money and make your budget go that little bit further.
Market your event more effectively with Helm Tickets!
Charlotte Allkins | Marketing Assistant
Charlotte is the Marketing Assistant for Helm, coming from a design background she loves creating all types of content. Discover more of here blogs, as well as, many others here!
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