If you’re trying to expand your business, then pop-up events can be a powerful promotional tool. They are utilised by a whole range of companies regardless of their size. It is key that business owners know both how to plan an event, to avoid the common pitfalls at the preparation stage; and how to host an event in a manner that will attract clients and promote the product to them.
How to plan an event
The first stage of figuring out how to plan an event is determining the aim of the event. Is your pop-up intended to launch a new addition to your product range? Or is it to attract a new target market to an existing product? The answers to these questions will determine the shape your event will take. For example, you might choose to dispense samples of the product to a market that may be reluctant to purchase outright. Alternatively, you might want to demonstrate a new product or service and gather information on potential customers.
When you have a vision for your event, the next step is determining your overall budget. Are you operating as an established company with a large marketing budget? If so, you may have equipment you have used in previous campaigns that can be rebranded or repurposed. Conversely, companies with fewer funds to invest in their pop-up may have to be creative with their approach. Renting equipment or choosing less obvious locations for your pop-up could save money. For example, instead of a train station concourse with a footfall of all ages, consider a more cost-efficient space that targets your demographic.
The final stage of development when considering how to plan an event is to draw your ideas together and decide as a team what shape your event will take. At this point, you will need to consider what materials you need and how many staff to hire. This stage requires extensive discussion. Therefore, you should assign one person to collate the best ideas in one place. If seeking ideas remotely or from multiple stakeholders, consider using an (interactive) whiteboard to capture the best suggestions.
How to host an event
Hosting an event can seem overwhelming. However, you can negate this feeling by having a clear plan for the day. As you’re putting together your pop-up, make sure each member of your team is aware of their role, their break allowances and their finish times.
Technology also can do a surprising amount of legwork in addition to impressing potential customers. If you’re demonstrating a complicated product or service, consider renting a VR system. This way, your customers can experience it in a memorable way. Projectors, large screens and video walls are a great way to display information about the product/service and will catch the eye of passers-by. If you’re looking to expand your mailing list then consider renting tablets with data capture software so you can follow up on leads.
If you choose to host a pop-up in an unusual location then you need to consider access to amenities. More remote or disused locations might lack an electricity source and Wi-Fi access. Investing in routers and charging kiosks will encourage your visitors to remain at the event and give them more time to engage with your product. If they use these facilities to post on social media, your investment may result in some extra promotion.
The high cost of TV advertising and the falling audience numbers for the print industry mean choosing to host a pop-up is becoming an increasingly attractive form of marketing. It enables you to circumnavigate older channels and speak directly to customers. If all goes well, it provides an opportunity to capture some great content that can be hosted on your company blog and shared on social media. Don’t forget to make sure someone is filming or taking pictures. Just make sure you get permission!
Photo by JAKOB DALBJORN