What is Event Marketing?

Chapter 3

What Kind of Marketing Events are There?

Online Marketing Events

Digital marketing events offer companies a less expensive alternative to hosting or participating in physical events. They also allow businesses to reach a global audience more effortlessly and to create events that address timely topics that physical events, which require more lead time, can’t do.


Live webinars help facilitate engagement with prospects and customers. Webinars revolve around product demos, presentations, and discussions, and are usually 30-60 minutes long.

If you host a live webinar, make it interactive by allowing participants to ask questions and taking polls. This increases customer engagement and makes viewers feel like they received real value for taking the time to watch your webinar. Polling also gives you valuable data that you can then share with your marketing, product, and sales teams.

Get creative with your webinar format and topics to keep participants interested. Think beyond just presenting a slide deck and droning on for an hour without stop.

Instapage hosts a weekly webinar where our lead marketing educator Ander Frischer covers marketing topics such as digital advertising personalization, custom acquisition and message matching:

Engage people at the start by asking them a question, like what they’re excited about learning, and then address those points during the presentation. Or bring on a guest to discuss a topic instead of always having it be a one-man (or woman) show.

If you think your presentation is valuable for a broad audience, consider putting it up on SlideShare to build brand awareness and to position your company as a thought leader.

Live Streaming Events

Live streaming allows people who are unable to attend in person to see presentations and interact with your brand via social media. It can also be a fun way to offer viewers a ‘behind-the-scenes’ look at your event, creating more transparency and giving your company a human face.

Starbucks used live streaming to broadcast their event showcasing the importance of voting. The chairman and CEO of Starbucks Howard Schultz and rapper Common talked about the importance of voting and urged viewers to send in questions which they would later answer in order to increase engagement for the event.

The event had a total of 167,000 viewers:

You can live stream in-person events that you’re hosting, or participating in, via social media channels like Facebook Live, or invest in a production crew for higher quality broadcasting.

To get viewers involved, ask them questions and have them respond via social media. This will increase engagement and create a sense of community among viewers because they can see people’s responses and organically interact with them.

Finally, you can send out the recording of your live stream to your email subscriber list, or make it available on your social channels. This expands the life of your live broadcast, increasing the ROI of your event even more.

In-Person Events

There’s nothing quite like being able to meet customers and prospects face-to-face. In-person events are a powerful way to move beyond a digital presence, which can seem impersonal to some, and connect with consumers on a more intimate level.

A study by Eventbrite found that 69% of millennials believe attending live events and experiences make them more connected to other people, the community, and the world. By creating a space for people to interact directly with your brand and other customers, you can build a loyal following and create more brand awareness.

There are several formats your live event can take, but the most common are trade shows, conferences, meetups or customer appreciation events.

Trade shows

Trade shows bring together individuals and companies in a particular industry or profession and are often used for lead generation and building brand awareness.

Because there are many businesses present at trade shows, it’s important to think about how to make your brand stand out. If you’re a sponsor with a booth, it’s important to think about the layout and location of your booth.

Xibit Solutions has an interesting infographic on things to consider when designing your booth.


Conferences are company-specific events, generally put on by enterprises that have a sizeable and engaged customer base, to deliver information about new product offerings or for educational purposes. The most common example is a user summit.

Conferences typically have multiple sessions and speakers geared towards different interests, roles within an organization, and skill levels.

Sponsoring a conference will increase your brand recognition at the event. With your logo on marketing materials and a presence on the floor with your booth, attendees who are looking for new solutions can easily find you.

Event organizers have already spent the time and money marketing to your target audience and bringing them all to one place. As a sponsor, capitalize on this fact by gearing your entire presence towards this audience. Make sure you have a cohesive, targeted message at your booth, in your marketing materials, and in any presentations you may be giving.


Brands can sponsor a local meetup geared towards their target audience to build brand awareness and engagement. These smaller, more intimate events offer brands a chance to network and build relationships with locals. If you have a local business, meetups are a great place to offer specials or promotions to generate new customers as well.

Appreciation Events

Showing your appreciation to your best customers by throwing an event can increase customer satisfaction, retention, referrals, testimonials and even sales. Many times companies do this by hosting a breakfast, lunch, or dinner around a conference that many of their customers will be attending.

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