Influencer marketing is a hot button topic right now. The good news for event planners is that you often have a ready supply of influencers for your events. These are your speakers and exhibitors, because they have already expressed interest in, and support for, your product or service.
The idea behind influencer marketing is that you identify those people whom your target customer looks to and trusts when they are trying to decide which product to buy. They may be celebrities, politicians, well-known locals, or others whose opinions are trusted by the people you are trying to reach.
Influencer marketing is a mutually beneficial relationship. You get the benefit of support from someone your customers look up to. And the influencer gets more likes and follows, increasing their exposure and influence further.
Start with the Speakers
As an event planner, you have a good foundation on which to build an influencer marketing campaign for your event. Start with the speakers that will be at the event. As soon as a speaker is confirmed for the event, sent out a message on each social media platform announcing the speaker. Be sure to use their name and the hashtag for the event. Encourage the speaker to post about the event as well, including the hashtag.
As people respond or react to posts, or use the event hashtag, reach out to them. Follow them back, and if they’re not on your list, ask them if they’re interested in attending the event.
Those companies that will be exhibiting at your event may also be influencers. These are the people that are selling the products and services that your attendees will want to buy, so your attendees may be following them as well. And they are likely to have large groups of followers who may also be prospective event-goers.
As with the speakers, start with an announcement as soon as an exhibitor has committed. Send the exhibitor a model post or tweet for them to use on their social media platforms. Then follow the trail to their fans and followers.
Consider having a contest at the event that includes influencers. Maybe attendees take a snap chat with the speaker to be entered into a drawing for a prize. Or you could have an Instagram scavenger hunt for attendees to go to exhibitor booths and take pictures of certain things they find at the booth. You could even offer a prize for the most creative use of a trade show giveaway product.
Influencer marketing is a powerful way to gain new customers and build your brand. A trade show or event is a golden opportunity to take advantage of this incredible tool.