So much time and effort is put into expanding the reach of your business online that many marketing directors and small business owners start to forget about the real world. Although social media is the sexy platform these days, it isn’t the be all and end all of business. All of those Likes and Tweets are generated by living, breathing individuals, and those people do in fact step away from their computers at some point. Corporate events and parties have always been a great way to market current products and services and build a buzz for upcoming releases. But it may be more important than ever to keep the pressure on in that arena, especially if you are looking to improve your standing within your home region. And the best part is you’ll receive real-time feedback in the attendance and the smiles on people’s faces, as well as the uptick in responses to your follow-up newsletters. Here are five great ways to promote your brand at corporate events and parties.
First and foremost are all of the opportunities for visual branding placement. That could be banners and posters placed around the venue and outside on the street, in perfect line of site for walking traffic. It could be a step-and-repeat setup your celebrity guests get photographed in front of. It could also be in the form of programs at the tables or business cards on the bar. Just make sure that your logo is visible enough that people walk away knowing who is behind the event, without being so obtrusive that it feels like constant advertising.
Another great way to promote your brand is through giveaways. If you have some high rollers or VIPs at the event that you really want to impress you might even want to put together a gift bag of sorts. In that case, brand the bag and place one of your products inside. Just make sure that overall it’s full of stuff that is fun or useful, and not just advertising for you. Give away smaller things to the event attendees, or larger things through a raffle.
During the vast majority of corporate parties and events there will be the opportunity to say a few words. Whether you handle those duties or it is someone else from your company, the goal of those few minutes should be very specific. You’ve got the attention of dozens or hundreds of people, and the opportunity to turn them into passionate brand ambassadors. Keep it short and entertaining, but make sure you have a message to deliver, and that it does come through.
Another unique way to promote your brand is by partnering with the food and beverage companies on products for the event. Many parties will feature specialty drinks that have something to do with the company, or a themed meal if it’s a sit-down dinner. This is a great way to connect your brand with your guests through several different senses. Plant a menu at the bar and on the table that describes everything, and come up with creative, brand-related names. If done well you’ll impact your guests through sight, smell, sound, touch and taste, all at the same time.
Finally, consider ways that the entertainment can reinforce your brand. There’s far more creative options available today than just a simple DJ. Consider firedancers from zenartsla.com, or magicians and trapeze artists brought in from Las Vegas. If you can match the entertainment to an upcoming product, or even use your product in the show in some way it will stick with your guests. Branded entertainment is the next big thing in advertising, simply because it works. Include your brand in the fun of the evening and it will be on every guest’s mind the next morning.