Informative brochures. Like your business card, a well-designed, professional brochure can help cement your image as a professional planner. Prospective clients will make judgments about your company based on your brochure; so, make sure it’s conceived and produced at the highest level possible.
The brochure should include all the information listed on your tri-fold business card and it allows you to expand upon this information, in particular, by adding photographs. The photos should be of successful events you’ve designed. You may also want to include a photo of yourself.
Maximise your chances of success by making sure your company brochure matches the type of business you have. All materials should look professional, but if you are marketing to a budget-conscious group, a too-glamorous brochure can send the wrong message—and send potential budget-conscious clients running in the opposite direction.
As with your business cards, leave your brochure with caterers, florists, photographers, and other vendors with whom you’ve worked.
Direct mail. You may choose to distribute your brochure via direct mail. If you do, make sure your mailing list is well chosen. A renowned events planner, David Granger, says that while word of mouth is his most effective advertising, he uses mailing lists of the organisations his company belongs to (International Special Events Society).
Customer service. One of the best ways to keep customers satisfied and coming back is to constantly be on the lookout for new ideas and ways to improve the service you provide. Consider the following:
- Take a course or a series of courses in events management.
- Invest in an hour or more with an industry consultant.
- Attend other events to study how they’re produced.
- Attend as many arts-related functions as possible (e.g., arts exhibitions, theatrical performances) to gather ideas.
- Join trade organisations.
- Subscribe to at least one professional newsletter or journal.
Facebook. Facebook is geared towards communicating with your network of friends. However, friends “like” websites they want to support or really like. So, create a Facebook page for your events planning business, but use it sparingly for promoting your business.
Postings to your Facebook wall might include some fun tidbits you learnt about a new wedding venue in the region or some behind-the-scenes anecdotes from that Rolling Stones concert you’re coordinating.
Check out the Facebook pages of other events planners and other service businesses you use and admire to see how they’re using Facebook to their advantage.
Twitter. With Twitter, you can tweet quick messages to your subscribers to remind them about your business. “does your corporate event need planning?” might be messages that promote your service while also offering benefit to the reader.
Instagram. This has become a great marketing tool for SME and even multinationals. It’s a platforms used to educate and engage your followers on new updates about your business.
As your Facebook, Twitterand Instagram audiences grow, stay creative. Invent new ways to engage your audience and encourage them to invite their friends. Continue to avoid hard sales pitches. People don’t forward commercials to their friends — they forward value.