Marketing for workshops, especially those that involve travel and approval by supervisors, needs to begin as soon as the event is scheduled—at minimum several months in advance. Here are some helpful tips and timelines to help you get your marketing off on the right track.
Things To Do Right Now
If you don't have a Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn account for your business yet, set it up as soon as you can. This is the ultimate FREE resource to help you get the word out about your business, and in turn, your upcoming events. Follow relevant accounts in the industry and be sure to interact regularly to grow your audience.
Use social media to talk about relevant industry information as well as current events in your facility including your upcoming workshops. All of these platforms offer you the opportunity to create ads targeted to a certain demographic. Try to use this feature whenever appropriate. If your speakers have a social media presence, be sure to tag them and AANAC in your posts to extend your reach.
Workshop Page (on your website)
Set up a page on your website that lists all your events. Make sure it stays up to date so people can easily find the information they are looking for. When adding your workshops, be sure to include a good description, speaker bios and photos, and a prominent REGISTER NOW button that links to registration. If you need help compiling this information, please refer to our marketing guide for samples.
Maintain an Email Database
Collect emails whenever you can. Whether it's at an event, setting up a sign up sheet in your reception area, a form on your website, or a social media posting, make sure you are saving the emails of the people who visit you. There are free services like Mail Chimp, Constant Contact, and iContact (and many others) that will store your email lists and make it easy for you to send out email blasts to those who may want to attend your workshop.
2-3 Months Out
Email Your Database
Setting up a regular newsletter is good practice so you stay fresh in your audience's mind. Offering industry news and insider tips and information is always a bonus, but at the very least be sure to include your upcoming events and relevant news about your business. When marketing your event, include all the pertinent information people will need to decide whether they want to come:
- A clear, direct, and concise subject line
- All event information including hotel suggestions
- Clear call to action (Register Now) with a link to the registration or events page on your website
When preparing your email keep in mind the following:
- Best day to send: Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday—early in the morning.
- Make sure your email is mobile friendly. Ask your IT department about this if you don’t know.
- Personalize. If possible, store names with emails so you can address to the individual (e.g. Dear Jane,)
Direct Marketing is generally not the most cost-effective tactic, but if you have it in your budget, it can be a great way to target facilities in your area. When planning for a direct marketing campaign:
- Include cost to print, mail, and design, if you choose not to use our template, in your budget planning.
- If you do plan to use the AANAC template and customize for your event, contact Alix Murrell as soon as possible so we can prepare it for you.
1-2 Months Out
Email to AANAC database
AANAC will send out an email on your behalf to members that are in your region. Contact Alix Murrell for more information. Ideally, you should get an email out 1-2 months in advance, so please keep that in mind and schedule your email with us early!