The vast majority of the UK’s small business owners believe that they should be running events to support their business objectives (88%), yet less than one in ten (8%) actually does.
This is according to research from the self service ticketing platform Eventbrite.
Small businesses neglecting events as part of their marketing mix could be missing out on a significant growth opportunity: A separate survey of 2000 UK adults has revealed that 96% of people prefer interacting with businesses face-to-face rather than online, which highlights the importance and inherent opportunity for small businesses to make and benefit from a personal connection with their customers.
“For small businesses, building personal relationships with their customers is a key way to differentiate themselves from larger competitors, which are often perceived as faceless”, says Marino Fresch, Head of Marketing UK at Eventbrite. “Small businesses can easily build and reinforce these personal relationships by running customer centric events on top of their daily interactions with them, like a tasting or a class after opening hours.”
“The good news is that running events to meet this appetite for real interaction and to grow networks, audiences and eventually revenues doesn’t have to be expensive, complicated or time consuming”, says Fresch.
As part of Small Business Advice Week, which helps the country’s 5.2 million SMEs thrive in tough times with advice from both leading experts and businesses across Britain, Eventbrite has compiled eight dos and don’ts of running an event for small businesses:
1) Do – know your customer or attendee. Successful organisers understand why people would want to attend their event, clearly communicate those benefits in their marketing, and consistently deliver a good experience on the day.
2) Do – make the most of your network. It’s surprising what people will help you out with if you ask, especially if you include brand exposure for their business to your audience.
3) Don’t – try and boil the ocean. Measure and understand which channels are most effective for marketing your event and only focus on those.
4) Do – be different. One characteristic that successful event organisers share is that they stand out from the crowd. Find your niche and build your events around it.
5) Do – make the most of the technology tools available. Make the most of the free tools out there that can save you time and simplify your event marketing.
6) Do – encourage those who’ve registered to attend your event to share their plans on social media. People naturally want to attend events that people they know are going to, so this is one of the best ways of boosting your attendee numbers.
7) Don’t – forget the reminders. Make sure you communicate with everybody who has registered for your event through regular reminder emails.
8) Do – keep the conversation going. Your event is just the starting point, so make sure you build on it by continuing to talk to your attendees.