When hosting an event, “branding” is frequently considered the basis of décor decisions or perhaps an event theme. But that’s just the beginning of how events can tie into a broader branding or marketing plan.
Just like print or television advertising, social media, web, and PR all contribute to different sides of any brand initiative, event marketing has a role to play in brand building. Used correctly, it can be a powerful one.
Use Case 1: Connect People to Your Brand
First, begin by looking at events as opportunities for people to physically, socially, or emotionally connect with your brand. Viewed through that lens, the brand character has much more to offer than simply a color scheme or slogan. It can direct activities or experiences as well.
Consider this example:
A fictional fitness footwear brand slogan is “We’re the spring in your step.”
Walkways made of tumble-track (a long straight trampoline) not only reinforce this idea but serve as a memorable experience that delights and surprises guests. All it takes is some complimentary socks and shoe bags to make guests comfortable and ready to participate.
Likewise, the same brand could offer flavored caffeinated water as a beverage – again, reinforcing the “bounce” the brand brings to someone’s day.
Good brands can resonate with people on many levels. So, think about how attendees could relate to your brand in a way simply reading about it or looking at it cannot achieve.
Use Case 2: Events As Rewards or Thank Yous
Another way to make events a more cohesive part of an overall marketing strategy is to make events the payoff of other marketing efforts. VIBE did this on behalf of Swarovski as part of a campaign for its loyalty club members.
Swarovski Society members had the chance to attend an unveiling of a limited-edition piece and we wove the entire storyline behind that piece into the promotional materials, culminating in the event itself. Not only was this a direct connection to a particular campaign, but it also generated response and action among key customers and created a buzzworthy experience that could attract future loyalty members.
Events can also be effective in launching (or relaunching) a brand experience from a customer service standpoint. Immersing employees in new directives, new language, or a change in tone or strategy is a smart way to create team members who are brand ambassadors. An event can teach them to “live” the brand in ways a classroom training session or an employee handbook simply cannot. So, look beyond the event walls when it comes to your brand – you may find a whole world of opportunities you can introduce your audience to.