It doesn't matter what kind of marketing activity you're doing, whether it's publishing an educational campaign on your social networks, promoting some kind of conversion event, or generating business through voucher sales, everything needs to be promoted.
You can't rely on sticking up posts on your social networks and expecting them to magically reach your target because as we established on page 14, very few organic (ie. unpaid) social media posts will actually be shown to your followers. It doesn't matter if you have 100, or 10,000 followers on a social network, only a minority of them will even see your posts and the percentage that do, varies based on the different social networks.
This is definitely not a case of 'build it and they will come'. You need to be proactive in promoting whatever it is you want people to see.
Some Key Points About Promoting Events
Make sure that wherever possible, every thing you put out there has some kind of call to action. If it's a nurture email, your call to action is to get them to visit or download your resources. If it's a social media post, ideally the call to action would involve collecting an email address, or taking some kind of action that will benefit your business like writing a review, engaging in the post or clicking a link that takes them further into the customer journey.
If you're running some kind of conversion event, whether it's a free education session, a video tour of your clinic, a recorded video of something, a face-to-face demonstration of a new piece of equipment, or an introduction to a new therapist try and ensure that every event has an upsell or purchasable call-to-action - in other words give people something to buy, along with a special incentive to buy it there and then.
It's advisable to add some time-pressure to your offer. The more time that passes after the person has attended the event, particularly an online one, the lower the chance you'll have of making a conversion to the upsell, so make a compelling offer upfront and early, followed by a slightly less, but still an incentivised offer for say 48 hours after they've attended the event.
Make sure that the sign-up page strongly emphasises the benefits to the viewer of attending the event, benefits are different to features. There's a good article at this link which really helps to focus the mind. Explain how your 'thing' (whatever that is), is going to help them, what pain it's going to solve, how will their lives be better if they respond to your call to action.
If you're going to make some kind of upsell offer as part of the process, make sure to tell them on the sign-up page, it's an extra incentive for them to take action.
Make sure you include the URL (web address) to the relevant sign-up page everywhere that you mention your event (I've listed some ideas below).
Ways to Promote Your Event
Send an email to your email list to let them know about what you're offering, and importantly how it will benefit and give them the link where they can sign up - the warmer and more engaged your email list is (ie. the better you have nurtured that list and the stronger your relationship is with your readers), the better the take-up you'll get.
Post one or more social media posts on your social networks including the same information as above (you can also use these posts as the basis for running a paid advertising promotion - more info below). Also if it's possible, pin the most popular of these posts, that gets the most engagement, to the top of your social media page while the offer is running (but remember to unpin it once the offer is finished).
If you belong to any groups (both online and offline), spread the word about your event through these groups and make sure to specifically ask people to share the information with people who they know might be interested, it might be obvious to us, but until you ask, people generally don't think of doing it off their own backs.
Add a PS at the bottom of all your outgoing clinic emails (whatever the email purpose) highlighting any new events/offerings/promotions - but again, make sure to remove this PS. once the event or offer is over, there's nothing worse than getting prompted about offers or events that have lapsed.
Put up a poster in your clinic or leaflets on your clinic reception desk promoting your event.
You could always send one of those old-fashioned things called letters 😉 with details of your events, it's a great way to keep past customers engaged in your business.
If you have a news section on your website make sure to include a at least a news snippet with a sign-up link ideally on the front page of your website.
Harness the power of pay-per-click advertising to promote your event - Facebook, Instagram, Google ads etc (more details below).
See if you can get a piece of editorial into local newspapers, magazines or onto local radio. If you're running an event off the back of one of our educational campaigns, you could offer the news outlet the customer newsletter that goes with that campaign in return for an extra paragraph at the end referencing your event (and don't forget to give them sign-up link). You could also do a special offer for readers of a particular media source. Remember, every media outlet is looking for ways to keep their readers happy.
Are there local businesses you could team up with to help promote your event through their channels, but make sure you do something comparable in value for them, in return, otherwise once bitten, twice shy and they may be much less inclined to get involved in the future. If it's a physical event, could they have a table at the event to hand out free samples for example?
Invest in the design and production of some postcards that you could have distributed locally promoting your event. Postcards are incredibly cheap to have printed and you can use a freelance site like Fiverr.com to commission someone to design something which is specific for your needs, at a very low cost.
Some other tips to help you get sign ups to your events
Good copywriting is key
The secret to successfully promoting anything, comes down to two key things: a) a good offer (ie. something that people will want); and b) good copywriting, which makes the offer sound compelling while remaining authentic and not going 'over-the-top'.
This is why I employ copywriting freelancers who you can hire for a whole range of different jobs, both large and small, through a website called Upwork.com. Every page I include through the Co-Kinetic subscriptions, has been written by a professional copywriter (mainly because I'm totally crap at doing it!) and it makes a huge different to sign-up rates. There is also another site which I haven't used before, but which offers the same sort of services called https://www.peopleperhour.com/.
Good copywriting will give you better sign-up rates to your event, whatever shape or form that takes, and that in turn will give you better conversion rates (ie. upsells) on your event, and therefore a better ROI.
You could also ask the copywriter to help you with accompanying social media posts and follow-up emails to encourage people to take you up on the upsells post-event.
Use paid advertising to widen awareness
This is a big 👍 suggestion, mainly because you can target people so specifically by interest area, but equally importantly, very geographically accurately.
Depending on whether you want to play a short game (ie. to get direct sign ups to the event now) as opposed to the slightly longer game of building your email list and then nurturing that list, before offering them something to purchase, you can do one of two things here:
Advertise the event specifically and get direct sign ups there and then
Or use a social media lead generation campaign on topic that's related to your event by offering 'lead magnets' as free downloads. Once you've established an interest in the relevant topic, you can follow these people up with information about your event. So for example, if you invested in bringing in new gait analysis equipment to your clinic, you might run a lead generation campaign on running injuries first, offering helpful leaflets on running injury prevention. You could follow-up later with an offer to attend your event introducing your new gait assessment equipment, with an offer on a discounted session.
As always, there are pros and cons to each route. If you take route 1, you're paying to get 'bums on seats', but as a result, you will probably experience a lower attendance rate (and therefore upsell conversion rate), because they've signed up 'cold' and may know little or nothing about you/your business. It will also cost you more to get a sign-up because signing up to an event requires a bigger investment and commitment than just signing up to some simple downloadable resources.
If you have the time, you'd be better off to spend your money to get leads who sign up to download your resources, thereby also establishing interest in the area, and then following up with an offer for your event. But that's a two stage process as opposed to the one stage process which will be quicker.
As with everything, testing is key. Try both strategies and see what works best, and then do more of it! That way you know you're spending your money wisely.
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