Events should be an integral part of your marketing plan, from trade shows to influencer meet-ups. Whether virtual or in person, events can put your products and toy brand in front of media and customers alike. Charlene DeLoach, CEO of The Playroom Chronicles, shared seven ways you can meet your event marketing goals in the WiT Webinar “How to Tell Your Toy Tale and Get the Most Out of Event Opportunities.” Here are the highlights.
Create loyalty and connection
According to DeLoach, “..connection is the new currency.” Going to events, whether in person or online, will help your customers feel more connected to you, which will encourage them to buy more from you and more frequently from you. With so many products in the market, what can set you apart from competitors is your connection to your audience.
Vary your advertising
Traditional advertising is a one-way communication tool that often feels impersonal and cold. Take advantage of events to listen to your clients’ feedback and respond to questions they may have. Events open up a two-way communication channel that helps promote your products and brand, allowing potential customers to ask questions and form a more meaningful connection with you and your product.
Educate your audience
At events, audience education can go beyond simply sharing what your toy or brand features. Events give you the chance to really elaborate on your products’ benefits. You should also let your audience know if you donate a percentage of your profits to charity organizations or help establish community programs with your free time. People are more likely to purchase products that they see have a positive impact socially or on the environment.
Establish name recognition
Putting a name to a face can humanize your brand and make it memorable, especially when competing against big box brands. When purchasing from a small business, clients see it as an investment in their community, and having name recognition solidifies your brand as part of that community.
Choose your events wisely
Not all events are created equal, and choosing events that will bring in customers that require your product is important. Once you narrow down what events your product will be received best at, you’re left with choosing in-person or online events, as well as retailer events vs influencer meetups. Deciding which event is better depends solely on your current marketing goals. If you want to spread your company name and increase online visibility, influencer and PR events align more with your goals. If you are selling a toy forages 10 and up, it will not be beneficial to attend baby product conferences. However, buying events could be helpful if you’re attempting to find a retailer to stock your toy.
Sell your story
Events can also be a great place to really sell the story of how your brand came about. This allows clients to understand your mission and alignment deeper, which fosters more significant connections. You become more than just your toy — you become your “why,” the reason you wanted to start this journey. Often, your story will resonate with clients and engage customers in a way they will remember months down the road.
Setting specific goals not only helps you narrow down which events will be beneficial for your brand or product — it also allows you to measure your success. A plan may be a concrete number of units sold or selling $3,000 worth of product. If more online visibility is your aim, your goal may be to have 10 people write about your product or brand, whether it’s on Instagram or in blogs.
Event marketing can help you engage with your customers and get your brand noticed more organically than with traditional marketing. While events can be stressful and require a lot of planning, these tips can help you establish two-way communication with your intended audience.