As a marketer and content writer, Regan is passionate about delivering content that provides value to the reader. When he’s not agonising over grammar and punctuation, Regan is interested in history and is well-versed in all the hottest series on Netflix.
You have your event plan down to a tee, you have great content, and you know the day itself will run like clockwork (after all, it’s not your first open day!) However, one often underestimated part of event planning is making sure the communication plan for your event is geared to helping you reach your school event goals.
Let’s dive in and take a look at some communication tips for the different stages of your event.
Pre-event communication is crucial for generating excitement and interest, and reminding everyone of important information. It needs to be clear to attendees where the event will take place, when it will take place, and anything else they may need to know, like location, or what they need to bring. Below are some tips for improving your pre-event promotion.
With social media being one of the most powerful marketing channels, it makes sense that you would want to promote your event there to reach as many people as possible and ultimately boost attendance. And what’s more, social media sites have some great features to help you along. For instance, Instagram Stories allows you to display a countdown sticker with a date and time, so you can both remind your community of your event and generate excitement.
Facebook lets you create a whole page dedicated to your event, where you can display all of the relevant details, including time, location, dress code, and more! In a Facebook event page, you can also tag speakers or other important people for the event, and you can connect with invited guests if they have any questions. So we can see how social media can be one of the strongest tools for marketing your event.
Website banners are a great way to display important information, and can be really effective for advertising upcoming events. Because your website homepage is the main touchpoint for your school, it makes sense that you’d want to display your event information in one of the most visible places possible. Your website’s likely also the first place parents will look when they want more information about your event. A banner makes their search easier, and they can quickly be redirected to your dedicated events page or section on your website, from where they can access all the information they need, and also find links to any event social media pages you may have.
Your school app is another excellent platform for promoting your event. Some school apps even have a dedicated events section, where they can post all the details and keep families in the loop with updates and notifications. School apps are for many parents the primary point of contact with the school, and the central hub for all school communication. This makes it perfect for promoting your school event, and parents won’t have to scramble to find any information. School app notifications get straight through to parents, minimising the chance that they’re missed or sent to a spam folder.
It’s easy to forget about post-event communication, which is understandably seen as lower down on the list of priorities when it comes to event planning. After all, there’s so much to think of when it comes to organising an event. However, post-event follow up is one of the best ways to ensure you reach your event’s goals.
Gaining feedback on the positives and negatives of your event using surveys from those who attended can go a long way towards strengthening future events. Communication after the event can either remind the attendees of the success of the event, or in the case of an open day, be the catalyst for prospective parents to choose your school, through a strong call-to-action in your follow-up.
Use post-event communication as the bow that ties the whole day together, focus on reminding the attendees how great the day was, ask them to take an action or gain feedback to improve your school’s next event.
A photo album with all the best shots from your event will help to boost engagement with your community after the event is over, and make it more memorable for everyone. Event attendees will be able to reminisce and potentially share the albums with others, making it a great method for improving community-wide engagement.
What’s great about an event photo album is its potential to be shared through different marketing channels. Not only can you send personalised emails to those who attended your event, but you can also share them on social media to reach a wider audience. A photo album provides real value to attendees, and is indicative of the care and attention you put into both your event and its guests.
Sending out newsletters or emails after your event to thank attendees for coming can boost engagement and connection with families, and add any future families into your lead nurturing campaigns. You can display all the highlights from your event in a newsletter, which will both please the attendees and show others what they missed out on, making it more likely for them to attend the next event. You can also use email to send you a thank you message to attendees and invitations for future events. It’s a good idea to personalise these emails and send them from a specific staff member on your team, such as your enrolment manager or principal.
Sending a post-event survey is an excellent way to gather insightful data which you can use to track event success and attendee satisfaction. By asking your attendees to fill out a survey shortly after your event, you’re picking cherries while they’re still ripe. They’ll still have in mind all the highlights from the event, and will give you honest feedback on what could have been done better.
Making sure your event marketing is on the same high level as your event day execution, will leave your attendees feeling a part of your community, satisfied with their event experience and ready for the next one!. By making use of these tips, you’ll be off to a great start, and will start to boost attendee attendance, engagement and enthusiasm.