Recipe 4.1

Holding your own event or sponsoring another organization’s event is a good way to build awareness of your business in the community and attract new customers.

 

Ingredients:

• Marketing Plan

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• Online Resource

a. How to Host a Business Event 
b. Marketing Your Business With an Event 
c. Event Planning Checklist 

Directions:

1. Determine whether you will hold your own event or sponsor another organization’s event.

2. If hosting your own event:

a. Set goals for the event and determine the type of event that would best achieve them. For instance, a coffeehouse wanting to attract new customers might choose to hold a special coffee tasting event.
b. Determine the scope of the event. Decide if the event will include refreshments, workshops or other activities relevant to your business. See How to Host a Business Event for ideas.
c. Identify the employee/employees who will take responsibility for planning and managing the event (typically your Marketing Director).
d. Choose a location and date.
e. Plan what you will need for your event including refreshments, food, space, seating, photography or video and any permits or licenses depending on the scope of the event.
f. Determine costs and set a budget. Make sure to include any applicable location, promotion and catering costs.
g. If the scope of the event warrants, seek partners or sponsors to co-host the event with you, such as a complementary business in your area, or one of your vendors or suppliers.
h. Refer to the Event Planning Checklist to create a checklist of steps you will take to plan and prepare for the event.
i. Invite attendees. Depending on the type of event, this can be formal invitations, paid advertising and/or public fliers to let people in the community know about the event.
j. Plan promotions at the event such as marketing materials (brochures, business cards), coupons or discounts, or promotional product giveaways. Update your Marketing Plan to reflect these activities. See Recipe 1.9, Create Your Marketing Plan.
k. Determine how you will promote the event, using email, your business website, advertising and community outreach.
l. Implement a media relations plan to publicize your event to all local media. Send all appropriate media outlets a news release prior to your local event and a follow-up release after the event. See Recipe 2.11, Draft Press Releases, and Recipe 2.12, Distribute Your Press Release.

3. If sponsoring an event:

a. Set goals for the sponsorship and determine the events that will best achieve those goals. Events should be relevant to your business and attract a large number of the customers you are trying to reach.
b. Investigate the event organizer. Make sure the organization has a good reputation in the community and the event is well run.
c. Clarify expectations. Find out what you are expected to provide and what you will receive in return, such as your business name in advertising or on banners, and whether you can gather customer data at the event.
d. Plan promotions at the event such as marketing materials (brochures, business cards), coupons or discounts, or promotional product giveaways. Update your marketing plan to reflect these activities.
e. Refer to the Event Planning Checklist to create a checklist of steps you will take to plan and prepare for the event.
f. See Marketing Your Business With an Event for more suggestions on sponsoring events.
g. Determine how you will promote the event, using email, your business website, advertising and community outreach. Find out how the event organizer is promoting the event and if you can participate in this outreach.
h. Implement a media relations plan to publicize your sponsorship of the event to all local media. Send all appropriate media outlets a news release prior to your local event and a follow-up release after the event. See Recipe 2.11, Draft Press Releases, and Recipe 2.12, Distribute Your Press Release. Find out how the organizer is publicizing the event to the media and if you can participate in their PR efforts.

 

Yield:

A successful event or sponsorship that increases your business’s visibility in the community and attracts new customers and prospects.

 

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