Industry Tips

The Bare-Bone Basics of Digital Marketing
Melody Brunsting, President, Melody’s Ad Works, Wildomar, California

Melody has been producing and promoting events since 1989 in Southern California. Through the years she has seen event marketing evolve from a mass media, mass press release program, to the current trends of pinpointed digital marketing that drives gate and online ticket sales by providing unique experiences. “Success requires that we engage new brand advocates; maintain and enhance existing relationships with our guests and sponsors; while charting a fluid course for the future that adapts to perpetual change.”

If you missed the Calfest Convention and session on Digital Marketing, here is the “Cliff Notes” version of Digital Marketing and how you can use it for your event.

  • Digital marketing is an effective and efficient method of reaching your core market to increase your attendance.
  • Digital marketing is results oriented and provides ongoing reports of its effectiveness, so you can increase your return on investment. You can pinpoint:
    1. Gender
    2. Age
    3. Income
    4. Geography/residence or within a radius of your event
    5. Psychographics (likes, patterns, habits, hobbies)
    6. People who attended an event like yours
  • Digital marketing is a multi-layered, multi-platform program that encompasses
    1. Mobile marketing (cell phone, tablet, in-app advertising)
    2. Email marketing
    3. Streaming video and audio marketing
    4. Search Engine Marketing
    5. Connected TV as in Roku, Netflix and Smart TVs – Where the cord cutters have gone. (Cord cutter? Yes, the ones that have neither cable nor satellite TV.)
    6. Re-marketing (re-targeting individuals who have either opened and email, clicked on a link in social media, searched your site or key words, or clicked on a link on the web – be it mobile or desktop).
  • There are digital marketing companies who specialize in putting this all together for you.
  • You can put your toes in the water by using Facebook/Instagram or Twitter advertising programs through your account; or by using Google Ad-words. Both programs walk you through pinpointing your audience. You will need good graphics, videos, and content.

All major traditional media (newspaper, radio, television) are offering digital components. Why? Because it is the most effective and cost efficient. This can sometimes save you time and money as they create the campaign for you, have a lower “minimum” requirement than many digital marketing companies, and will tie the digital component to traditional media. Traditional media is still effective and will still reach a portion of your audience that digital will not.  It has the ability to imply event endorsement by news anchors and deejays.

The key to using digital marketing is to know precisely who your attendees are and where to find them.  This means you have surveys and data that tell you the median and average age of your attendees, income of your attendees, gender, and place of residence.  I use the psychographics where possible, such as: concert goers, wine drinkers, foodies, outdoor events and photography. I also use information such as favorite radio station, where the guests obtain news on concerts and life, and the reason they attended the event.

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