09 Nov Dealer Spotlight: Planning a Successful Event with Douglas Feed & Pet Supply
I have been working with Craig, DeeDee and Kristen for over 5 years now to manage their website, social media and email marketing. So I knew when Craig and Kristen called me to say they were planning on having a Ladies’ Night event in their store – and they wanted it to be high in attendance, I knew we needed to start planning early in order to see results that would really “WOW” them.
Kristen and I worked hand-in-hand to plan this event from coming up with the details, to mapping out an 8-week plan, to approving eblasts, Facebook content and more. The event was a MAJOR success for them, so I wanted to share our strategy as inspiration for your upcoming events!
Plan in advance.
Kristen and I sat down (over the phone) and had a calendar up. We picked dates and scheduled everything out in advance. This allowed both of us to prepare and know when things needed to be due by in order to meet our determined dates. We had time to make edits to eblasts, graphics, etc. without anything having to be rushed. Ultimately, this helped us to avoid mistakes and produce great content to generate a lot of buzz. This also helped us to establish a checklist which included:
- Add content to website – event/banner
- Create Facebook event
- Send out weekly eblasts
- Boost Facebook posts
- Get RSVPs to event on Facebook
We also determined the budget for the event early on in the planning process. Craig and Kristen both knew they wanted to add more eblasts than the 2 per month in their service plan and boost Facebook posts. We established a budget and worked this into the calendar as well so that we were consistently boosting new, relevant content as it related to the event.
Kristen wanted to get as much planning for the event done sooner rather than later. Because of that, we created the Facebook event a full 6-7 weeks prior to the actual event date. To capture a lot of RSVPs early on, Kristen came up with a great idea to offer a $5 store credit to anyone who RSVPed by 9/15, a full 3 weeks before the event. Doing this allowed us to do two things, (1) create a lot of buzz about the event because people were tagging their friends/family so that they didn’t miss out on the credit and (2) allowed us to get a lot of RSVPs early to give them an idea of how many attendees they needed to plan for.
This incentive also created good content for our eblasts. We started promoting the event early in emails so there was concern that we might run out of fresh content for eblasts and may see some unsubscribes as a result. Timing this incentive to end early allowed us to focus on the credit incentive for the first 3 eblasts and then focus on finalized event details for the final 4 eblasts leading up to the event.
The materials that we created were consistent on eblasts, social media and in the store. This gave us an opportunity to talk to as many customers as possible and make sure that everyone had access to the same information.
It was really important for both Kristen and I to continue to see all of this through and continue to create buzz even leading up to the day of the event. We did additional Facebook posts with photos showing them setting up for the event, etc. Although a lot of content we were pushing out had similar messaging, we tried to keep it unique to keep people engaged even if they had just gotten an eblast yesterday.
Once the event was over, we were quick to post a thank you message to everyone who attended as well as share photos of the event on social media and the website.
Doing these combination of things lead to over 430 people in attendance at this event! It was a great success that was able to be pulled off by spending 30 minutes at the start to create a full content calendar and lay out expectations and objectives for both sides.
Thank you to Douglas Feed & Pet for trusting us to help pull off this amazing event!