Advertising 101: What Event Planners Should Consider Before Paying for Ads

October 6, 2022 Mario Stewart

Event planners rely on well-placed advertising not only to generate new event client leads but also to promote upcoming events and attract attendees. But the advertising landscape changes continuously, and if you’re not adapting your advertising playbook, you could be wasting valuable time and money. Before spending a dime on any advertising, consider these key points. 

Does the Proposed Ad Plan Meet Your Goals?

Whether you’re looking to land New York event clients or promoting an upcoming conference, you’ll have goals outlined for ad spend. To really determine if a particular ad campaign is going to be effective, you can do the math based on ROI, reach, frequency, and impressions. Reverse engineer those metrics to see if the potential results align with your goals. Any proposed ad campaign that does not provide clear lines of progress in working toward or achieving your event planning goals is not going to be worth the investment.

Does the Ad Campaign Reach Your Target Audience?

Before investing in any ad campaign, online or otherwise, you’ll want to examine the channel’s audience. Know who your target audience is first, with an outlined persona to help you understand the audience's habits and preferences. Then you can verify if the proposed ad campaign reaches those personas effectively. It won’t matter what your message is or how much you spend. If the ad isn’t visible to your core target audience, it won’t produce the results you want.

Do You Understand Your Advertising Budget?

An ad campaign will only be a waste of money if it doesn’t work. If you could spend $10,000 to make $100,000 guaranteed, you’d do it, right? But that’s the thing about advertising. You can’t guarantee results every time. And that’s why you need to really understand your budget first. Right now, your event budget might only allow for $500 or $1,000 of ad spend. Or maybe your event planning company budget can afford to invest $2,000 in a campaign. When you know your budget, you can be smart about only selecting those ad campaigns that make the most bang for each invested buck. 

  • Know your budget (including hardline spending parameters)
  • Know your risk comfort (how much can you afford to lose)
  • Know your most likely calculated results with a margin of error

Do You Have a Mid-Campaign Analysis Process?

Before launching any advertising effort, make sure you also have a strategy for pulse-checking midway through the campaign. Advertising is not a set-it-and-forget-it effort. You will want to invest in those campaigns that provide real-time metrics and analytics throughout, so you can review and adapt your strategy accordingly. What may begin is a great ad with a results-driven message, may need to be altered in a week or month to maintain momentum.

Make sure your analytics provide actionable insights regarding:

  • Website traffic
  • Phone calls from an ad
  • Online forms submitted 
  • Subscribers
  • Event RSVPs
  • Lead generation
  • Conversion rates

Whether you’re exploring social media ads, PPC campaigns, or more traditional advertising channels, consider these key elements before investing. Be smart about where you put your ad dollars and keep track of which campaigns are more effective for you. 

Learn more about advertising best practices for event planners and so much more when you attend The Event Planner Expo 2022! Get tickets now so you don’t miss the #1 events industry conference of the year!

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