2015 was the year that email reinvented itself by finding new avenues and ways to communicate with an evolving audience. In some cases, it was about finding a way to be more innovative within the same platform – and in other cases it’s about emerging technology forcing a communication evolution. Wearable technology was the biggest game change of the year. With email marketing campaigns now popping up on your smart watch, it became necessary to change how we write email copy. In the case of email copy, it meant two things. The first, subject lines needed to be more conversational, punchy and to the point. A smaller screen to host copy meant that longer text would not only be lost in the mix, but it would also be seen as a nuisance. On the other hand, Twitter-like email subject lines got the message across quickly, would fit on the screen, appear more engaging and they better connect with a Millennial audience. Even though Apple Watch users span across several generational users because of how easy it is to use the product, smart watches specifically (as a first wave of smart watch technology) appealed to the millennial mindset. This means that users are looking to get what they need quickly, informally, and still be able to find value in shorter messages that are screen-friendly. Shorter messages are were also a pretty big rallying point since mobile marketing continued to be a pretty important development need. Even though email campaign platforms offer a mobile version, the fact most marketers tend to forget is that most readers will likely be viewing your campaign on their mobile phone. This mean that both design and content need to be download friend, screen size and resolution friendly, and message friendly – so no large images and multiple images that slow down download, while favoring compact copy. Mobile email campaigns didn’t just stop there. Knowing that “on to go” doesn’t just apply to readers, but also to senders, forward thinking marketers took it a step further aligning themselves with a solution that lets them send on the go too. If you’ve got a smartphone like an iPhone or an Android, you can use the Benchmark Email app to carry your email plan over to your phone. The app comes with 10 exclusive templates that are ready to go. On the go marketers, which is the state of working these days with a need to do multiple things at once, means that you can be sending email blasts and videos that you created at your desk minutes before. Embedded video email campaigns were the last biggest rallying point of 2015. With videos, start-ups and enterprises were able to create powerful personal connections with their audience. Whether it was product reviews, video testimonials or interviews, direct messages from the CEO or using video to generate landing page traffic, video clearly appealed to readers as long as they’re short and offer value was well. As your year wraps up, take an inventory of your email marketing efforts thru the year: what worked and what didn’t? What could be done better? With that in mind, take a look at what else is happening around the corner in 2016 and roll that into your email strategy for the upcoming year.
No matter what type of event you’re presenting, it’s quite likely that you have several competing producers who are also creating similar events in your niche. In order to stand head and shoulders above the crowd to allow your potential attendees to identify your event as the one where they are most willing to invest their time and money, you need to galvanize your audience. Attracting them is not enough, as you need to completely rivet their attention through these critical techniques. Blow viewers away with your video, don’t just try to sell You don’t have to allocate five and six figure budgets to create an outstanding video. The concept is everything when it comes to videos going viral and the budget is very rarely, if ever, an important factor. When you craft a video to appeal to a wide audience due to its uniqueness, educational, and entertainment value, it will promote your event to such a degree that it could possibly go viral and provide more visibility for your event than you could ever have dreamed of. One of the best tips for creating a viral video is the quirkiness of the concept. You’ll find that the event promotional videos which are as dry as toast and exist for no other reason than to hawk your tickets will fall flat on their faces, while the ones which tie into your event’s promotion almost in a peripheral manner, but are primarily driven by a really amazing concept which literally forces your viewer to be blown away and then share it with their entire social circle with a message along the lines of “you gotta see this” are the ones which become runaway viral hits. Provide $2 value for each $1 spent on tickets Exactly what is the prime driving reason for your attendees to show up at your event? You need to ensure that you have a crystal clear picture of what that reason is and that you are able to communicate that to your entire potential audience. Whether it’s an advanced, targeted educational event designed to illuminate and motivate business attendees, perhaps with a well-known professional as an expert speaker, or if it’s a consumer event set in a party atmosphere with plenty of entertainment in between the product demos and giveaways, you need to be vividly aware of the connection you are forging with your audience based on providing them exceptional and unique value. What will your audience be learning, what will they be experiencing, and what are you doing to give them at least two dollars of value for every dollar they spend? Focus on the Relation part of Press Relations It is an indelible part of the event organizer’s life that there is no option but to deal with the media and sometimes that experience can be positive, uplifting, edifying, and bring your event plenty of positive publicity, and some other times it becomes nothing more than an exercise in infuriating frustration. Just because you believe that your event is worthy of news coverage does not necessarily translate into any one particular journalist or blogger sharing your enthusiastic view of your event. It can be extremely maddening when your press releases and media contacts end up getting your event little more than a three line listing buried in some obscure event calendar somewhere, when events you believe don’t come close to matching yours are gathering the lion’s share of media attention. The media professionals you so desperately need to support your event are busy people with constant deadlines and can’t always provide the level of coverage that you would prefer, so if you want to give your event the best possible chance of becoming a success, you must nurture those relationships with the press and media in order to convince them that your event is worthy of their immediate and in-depth attention. Electrify your potential attendees and get them to be magnetically drawn to your event. Once you are able to do that successfully, then everyone engaged in your event will benefit, from the audience who will attend a wonderful event... to your box office take!