Marketing Strategies Event Planners Need: Attendee Experience Design

Now more than ever before, events are closer to the heart of the marketing mix. Read on to learn how to event planners can design an experience that supports marketing objectives.

Emily Newman

April 10, 2023

Now more than ever before, events are closer to the heart of the marketing mix. Events continue to be the most powerful channel to elevate individuals, organizations and industries. In the past year, the role of event professionals has shifted, resulting in an opportunity for event planners to be a leading voice in marketing. 

This poses a challenge for event planners: How can you deliver a successful event with a well-designed strategy, effective operational plan and execution? 

Recently, industry leaders from Notified and IMEX Group came together to share the top tips event planners can learn from event marketers. Read on to learn takeaways from our webinar and how planners can design an unforgettable attendee experience while directly supporting marketing objectives. 

What is the Role of Event Professionals?  

Let’s start with how the role of an event professional has shifted over the past couple of months. 

Event professionals have a core operational excellence in their attention to detail and ability to learn new things while adapting to change. Around the world, planners were able to leap to a virtual environment while taking on a different skill set of delivering show flow, content, and format to a global audience. 

The switch to a hybrid event format has not been easy. since it required a steep learning curve of different skill sets. However, it is crucial to remember that this is only the beginning. We are still in the early stages of transitioning to a hybrid model where planners must consider delivering content to two audiences while producing immersive programs. 


The New Event Framework 

Event planners now have an opportunity to evolve into event marketers with the adoption of a very simple framework. 

This framework includes understanding our environment and stakeholder goals to determine objectives, design an experience, deliver that experience and measure the event to reinforce content. 

This leads us to ask the question: How can we gain an understanding of our environments and develop purposeful business objectives to create a path for event marketing? The key is to set objectives and start with your ROI to understand what you are trying to achieve. It is then a necessary step to go to your stakeholders and have a conversation about what they are trying to achieve. 

The next step in our framework is how to design your experience. When determining whether your event should be in-person or virtual, you must consider which format will deliver more on your objectives. 

When it comes to a hybrid model, you can showcase different ways you can meet your goals. The hybrid model provides you with the opportunity to reach a global audience and start your program before the day of your event. In doing so, you can create excitement around the event and prepare your audience for what is to come. 

The best part about the early stages of the framework and designing your experience is that an event no longer has a finite amount of time attached to it. Now, you can engage with your audience before, after, and during your event. As a sponsor, you can engage with the audience for a longer time, and as an attendee, you are getting to experience incredible content. 

How In-Person Events Have Changed 

The pandemic has created an opportunity to reinvent the in-person event. The world has changed, affecting how individuals wish to engage in person. This change has resulted in a need for custom event programs. 

When designing an event, it is necessary to include safety measures to make sure attendees are comfortable at the event. Additionally, consider the attendee arrival flow and how people are going to navigate the show. While making these changes, create consistency in experience and signage to create a sense of familiarity. 

When it comes time to deliver an event across the in-person and digital channels, event planners need to understand the needs of event marketers and vice versa. Planners must go to marketers to talk about the strategic objectives and how the event will be designed. In understanding this context and the “why” of the event, marketers can market the in-person and digital experiences and help planners achieve their goals. Event planners do not need to become marketers but they need to collaborate with them to create engaging content. 

Watch Our Webinar On Demand 

Thanks for reading this recap blog! To view the entire discussion and learn even more about how event planners are closer to the heart of the marketing mix, watch the full broadcast on demand