Event schedules have the potential to change for several reasons. There are many different unforeseen events that justifiably necessitate the postponement or cancellation of an event:
- Unexpectedly bad weather
- Speaker cancellations
- Widespread illness
- Problems with the venue
Event planners who remain in contact with their attendees and those still considering purchasing tickets to the event will ultimately make the most of their event.
Timely and graceful communication with customers reinforces the all-important rapport necessary to retaintheir business as time progresses. As detailed below, the internet and other contemporary technology play a critically important role in staying connected to event audiences and building brand loyalty.
SMS Messages and alerts
The vast majority of those who purchase a ticket to an event or even express interest in an upcoming event will appreciate any update alerts sent directly to their phone via text message or email.
Whether you have to change your event’s date/time or make any other meaningful update or alteration, communicate it in a timely manner through a text message ... your guests will appreciate it.
Mass emails and newsletters
The savviest event planners collect customer email addresses and other contact information through web-based lead magnets (guides, eBooks, pop-up forms, landing pages, etc.)
Provide your customers with the opportunity to sign up for your email list or use a lead magnet and you will have a convenient form of outreach to provide updates as necessary. According to Oberlo, each dollar invested in email marketing returns a whopping $42 in revenue.
However, this is not an excuse to rattle off one email after another to your customers and prospective leads.
Rather, limit your mass emails to instances when you have important updates pertaining to an event.
If you transmit a newsletter, it should be sent at strategic times, ideally once every month or two as your event approaches. Be sure to include a to-the-point, captivating message in the subject line of the email that entices recipients to actually click it and read about the event update.
Social media and live stories
The majority of your audience will learn about your upcoming event online. Most of these web users also look to social media, be it in the form of:
Update your social media pages with regularity to stay connected to your current customers as well as target attendees. Live stories presented in video form can also help communicate the latest event updates, especially for those who prefer to watch rather than read.
Messages on customer accounts or event page
Your customers will appreciate a pop-up message or even a message prominently displayed at the top of your event homepage “above the fold” when important updates or alterations are made.
They shouldn't have to search for the latests news on upcoming events; it's your job to notify them and stay current.
When should you alert your guests?
- A new date/time (postponed or rescheduled events)
- The addition or subtraction of specific speakers
- Other important event-related information changes
Put out a press release for your local news
Plenty of event planners assume local news outlets are unwilling to publish information pertaining to private events OR that they will automatically be covering their event news.
Reach out to your local news outlets and you just might find the majority are willing to publish your press release.
Though the headline pertaining to your event might not be featured at the very top or center of a local news website, merely making it onto this page will help draw attention to your upcoming event.
Invest the time and necessary to carefully craft a compelling press release that sheds light on your event’s unique value proposition and the results will show in the form of increased ticket sales. Be particularly careful with the language and tone of the text to make the press release objective as opposed to subjective.
If there is any sales-oriented language or perceived bias in the write-up, it will come off as more of a promotional piece as opposed to a public announcement.
- Highlight any recent alterations to the event so prospective attendees understand exactly what has changed.
- Adhere to the press release marketing tips detailed in this informative piece to ensure the write-up maximizes its intended impact.
- If you do not have the writing skill, time or energy to create an informative press release, outsource the work to a professional writer, providing him or her with as much guidance as possible.
A press release written in a truly artful manner just might be shared by hundreds or even thousands of people on the web’s array of social media platforms, generating that much more interest and awareness for your event.