Added Event Marketing Functionality Helps the Smaller Shows

Email and event marketing firm Constant Contact announced last week it added new functionality to its event marketing tool. The enhancements, says the company, are targeted toward smaller event producers looking for more robust marketing tactics—particularly for email and social media.

Steve Goranson, who runs a small executive coaching firm called ActionCOACH in Jacksonville, Florida, says he uses the tool to promote his business, which offers seminars to local business owners.

Goranson’s previous strategy was to emphasize email marketing to promote his seminars, but has since turned to the event marketing tool. "It allows me one place to send people to. I can track registrations and send confirmations," he says, and adds that by using the confirmation emails, he cuts his no-show rate in half from 50 percent to 25 percent.

As for many other event producers, social media has become a valuable marketing tool, and Constant Contact has added more integration with Twitter. "With Twitter, it’s automatic," says Goranson. "It connects with my account and inputs the post, which directs my followers to the seminar Web site."

Other tools added to Constant Contact’s Event Marketing service include integrated ticketing, guest registration and the ability to re-use email messaging rather than starting a new campaign from scratch.

Goranson says he has about 700 contacts in his database, but also uses Facebook to enhance his marketing reach. "In the past, when people tried to promote themselves they’d get a cold list. Now, with Facebook I have the ability to create friends and fans and build a relationship and provide them with some information of value. You have to make sure you’re humanizing everything. I use it for a soft promotions. That’s where the two work very well together—it provides me an easy way to send the prospects to a landing page."