Event Marketing Success Is Within Reach!

Growing a practice takes a lot of time, energy and creativity. Trying to reach a new audience, or even gaining prominence in your own community, is difficult. While the purpose of healthcare is to help people, it is a business. Advertising is essential for acquiring new patients. This is where a fun event can outperform many other marketing tactics. Positive buzz, stronger patient relationships, and increased exposure to potential new patients are just a few notable perks. So, to ensure your practice becomes the talk of the town, SmileMakers has a few tips to make your next event a success.

Event Marketing Success Is Within Reach! Photo Credit: Dr. Ellen Im - Pediatric Dentistry. Poway, California

Start planning now!
No matter what you have in mind, it will probably take more effort to create than you think. Giving yourself time to prepare is crucial. Plans change and inevitable hiccups occur. The time allotted for planning should allow for such variances. Scheduling far in advance also allows for proper marketing and generation of interest. More time allows a larger audience to discover the event and spread the word.

Set goals and stick to them.
While planning, it’s important to assign tasks and goals. When followed carefully, achievable and timely goals alleviate the pressure and help preparations run smoothly. Properly delegated tasks ensure that no one on your team, including you, is overwhelmed. And when tasks are completed in a timely manner, your event is more likely to kick-off without a hitch. In contrast, procrastination leads to rushed work. A hastily designed event is evident. Without a checklist of goals, you run the risk of forgetting a necessary element or becoming heavily delayed. Advanced planning means nothing if you don’t meet your deadlines.

Event Marketing Success Is Within Reach!

Use every platform possible to spread the word.
With all the different ways to get the word out, it can be intimidating to know where to start. Luckily, many of the available options for promotion in the digital age are free. Alerting your patients of upcoming events through social media and email campaigns is easy and effective. Creating a blog post or updating your website with the event info will also reach your audience. If the goal is to spread the word to prospective patients, there are inexpensive event promotion options on Facebook that target the local community. You can set a budget, location, and target demographic with ease. Another option is to send a postcard mailer to the zip codes around your office. You can easily customize your card online and the postal service offers an inexpensive way to find names and addresses of residents around you. Finally, word of mouth is still an important tool for promotion. Encourage your patients to tell their friends and family about the event. As long as you give yourself enough time, you’ll definitely be able to engage with your community and create interest.

Here is a list of other ways that you can promote your event:

  1. Post event flyers or videos on Instagram or Twitter. These platforms receive fast attention and are easily shareable. Visually impressive images or videos are important for promoting on these sites.
  2. Reach out to local newspapers. The average person consumes more news than ever. With press releases having a prominent place in their own section of the newspaper, it’s direct access to those that read through bulletins. Newspapers have very loyal readers which can translate into loyal patients if pursued properly.
  3. Invest in local radio ads. People still listen to their local radio station for news, weather updates and traffic reports. A creative ad that plays during rush hour will reach a captive audience with time to mull it over. Radio ads are most effective with a punchy phrase or jingle that will stick in the listener's mind.
  4. Tap industry influencers (people with large online followings). Each social media platform has prominent people who have garnered a following and make a living by advertising products or promoting events. There is an influencer for almost every demographic that will promote your event if incentivized properly. 
Event Marketing Success Is Within Reach!

Sell yourself at the event.
Appearances matter and people are always watching. If you and your staff are not committed to making your event the best possible, it will be noticeable. Remember, your event should promote your office and your staff. It is, after all, a reflection of your business. If your event reflects passion and commitment to excellence, attendees will be assured that you’ll bring that same energy to your patient care. During planning, make sure that the event is one with 100% buy-in. The more excited you are for the event, the higher chance of success. This is an opportunity for you to interact with your community. Every conversation and good memory created will translate positively to a potential new patient.

Ready to plan for your next event?
SmileMakers has everything you need to make your event a success. Visit us online to customize your event marketing needs today!

Sources:
Els, G. Mawer, V. Pielichaty, H. Reed, I. (2016). Events Project Management. Routledge. Retrieved from: https://books.google.com/books?id=KhB6DQAAQBAJ&pg=PT60&dq=research+how+social+media+can+promote+an+event&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjLh4LhjdjWAhVQw2MKHao-CnYQ6AEIKDAA#v=onepage&q=research%20how%20social%20media%20can%20promote%20an%20event&f=false

Stelzner, M. (2013). 10 Ways to Use Social Media to Promote an Event. Retrieved from: https://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/10-ways-to-use-social-media-to-promote-an-event/

Cabrera, M. & Nuria, L. (2016) Digital Tools for Academic Branding and Self-Promotion

Advances in Educational Marketing, Administration, and Leadership. IGI Global. https://books.google.com/books?id=LENuDQAAQBAJ&pg=PA70&dq=research+how+social+media+can+promote+an+event&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjLh4LhjdjWAhVQw2MKHao-CnYQ6AEINTAC#v=onepage&q=research%20how%20social%20media%20can%20promote%20an%20event&f=false