Building brand awareness is one of the most important tactics for succeeding in today’s hyper-competitive market. The simplest way to think of branding is as the glue that binds all the disparate parts of a company together into one coherent whole. Yet while most professionals agree on the importance of strong branding, many fail to understand the best ways to achieve this elusive goal.
More and more brand managers today are capitalizing on one of the best ways to boost a brand: event branding. A recent survey found that a staggering 31 percent of marketers felt that event marketing formed the most effective of all marketing channels. This article breaks down five specific ways that successful event branding can boost your brand in 2020.
While a business measures the success of its brand in myriad ways, at the end of the day the single most important metric is the return on investment. If you cannot count on your event to increase your conversions rates. Fortunately, the data suggests that event branding offers an overwhelmingly positive ROI, which of course helps to improve your brand awareness.
According to a survey conducted by the Exhibit & Event Marketers Association and the CMO Council, branded events were found to generate an average ROI of between 25 and 34 percent. Just as importantly, only 2 percent of respondents said that branded events represented a net loss for them. The only caveat of this study was the relatively high number of marketers who did not track event ROI.
Part of the difficulty here has to do with the models used to measure event ROI. There are three main approaches to be aware of:
- Incremental Revenue
- Incremental Margin
Return/investment is the simplest model, which simply looks at the relationship between event revenue and event expenses. Incremental revenue is a more advanced model, which also takes into account the event profit. Finally, incremental margin offers an even more complex analysis, basing its calculation not on event revenue but on the gross margin.
Regardless of which model you use to calculate your ROI, the data overwhelming suggests that event branding offers a highly effective means of increasing sales and brand awareness.
Database and Lead Growth to Help Build Brand Awareness
The benefit of event branding does not stop at immediate conversions. Just as valuable over the long term are leads that you can add to your database. In fact, 64 percent of respondents in the same study cited in the last section claimed to use events primarily as outreach for new prospects. Furthermore, 63 percent of respondents cited lead sourcing as a goal.
In order to make the most of such opportunities, however, you must be sure to collect contact information. This proves easier if you are hosting the event in question since you will likely capture the attendant’s emails during registration. Businesses who sponsor events must be more proactive about gathering data.
In any case, measuring this type of brand growth is easy, since the numbers of new leads and/or contacts entered into your database provide a built-in metric. Ideally, you should set goals about the number of leads you hope to capture going into an event.
Improved Brand Affinity
By now you should be fairly convinced that event branding offers a reliable way to drive both positive ROI and new leads, and hence brand awareness. Of course, there are admittedly plenty of other ways to achieve those goals. Yet event branding offers a far more unique means of facilitating company growth: building brand affinity with your core demographic groups.
Brand affinity is a key metric in predicting how consumers will behave in the future. Don’t confuse brand affinity with brand loyalty. Though the two concepts are closely related, brand affinity tends to imply more of an emotional bond than brand loyalty, which tends to be a more rational consideration.
Events make such a good tool for building brand affinity because they naturally involve shared experiences. The more fun a customer has at your event, the more they will associate your entire brand with those feelings. While marketing experts are still working on ways to quantify brand affinity, the link between positive feelings and improved ROI is undeniable.
Better Relationship Building
Building brand affinity through events is a great way to drive B2C sales growth. Fortunately, businesses that focus primarily on B2B can also capitalize on the in-person benefits of branded events. Here the more important emphasis is on relationship building. A branded event allows other businesses to put a face to your company, while also providing a forum for them to try your products and ask questions.
Simply put, face to face interactions foster long-term relationships better than almost all other marketing strategies. That’s why most B2B marketers allocate nearly 20 percent of their budget to event marketing. A potential customer is also far more likely to pick up the phone for somebody they have met in person and shared a positive experience with.
Social Media Growth for Brand Awareness
Social media has quickly become one of the most impactful modes of digital marketing, thanks to the fact that as many as 54 percent of Social Browsers use social media to directly research products. Businesses eager to cash in on this opportunity for increased brand awareness have been doing everything possible to increase their social media presence.
Event branding can boost social media growth like few other things. In the lead-up to the event, you can flood your social media channels with pre-event announcements. Likewise, you can offer discounts, free tickets, and other prizes to followers who help spread the word. The key at this stage is to foster the kind of genuine excitement that will naturally make people want to promote your event.
During the event itself, you should focus on two things: getting new followers and encouraging current followers to post about your event. Make sure that your social media account handles are easily accessible at the event. You should also come up with several unique hashtags, which you can encourage attendees to use when posting about the event.
To learn more about how event branding in Dubai can positively influence your brand awareness, please contact the industry experts at The Event Production Company.