5 Easy Ways to Attract Attendees to Your Event

November 8, 2015

Christine Cullity and Ken Ferreira

Christine Cullity, Director of Marketing and Ken Ferreira, National Sales Application Manager, at Convention Data Services. Collectively, Christine and Ken have 36 years of experience in the tradeshow industry. 

It’s the age-old question that all show managers ask, “How do I attract more attendees to my event?” The goal is to not only attract attendees to your current event, but to turn them into repeat attendees for years to come. A comprehensive and targeted marketing approach that encourages conversation and interaction will help you reach the greatest number of potential attendees who will in turn share the experience with their colleagues.

#1. Analyze, personalize and segment your data:

Begin your campaign strategy by leveraging your event’s existing data. Slice and dice your data into historical and current registration information categories. In the historical category include first-time attendees from your last event, attendees by region, and attendees by buying power. In the second category include all of your current data from your social media efforts, invite-a-colleague, exhibitor invites and registration abandonment. Use this data to create and target specific markets.

#2. Engage your attendees:

The invite-a-colleague program uses the influence of your current attendees to reach their contacts and engage potential new attendees who are not currently in the event database. Email recipients are more likely to open and act on an email from a trusted source and colleague. 

Proven to cut through pre-show marketing emails, this program has consistently shown the highest registration conversion rate. 

#3. Engage your exhibitors: 

When your exhibitors promote your event it is a win-win situation. The exhibitor invite program gives your exhibitors a tool to reach their existing list of customers and referrals. By helping to increase the attendance, they give themselves the opportunity to expose their brand to a wider audience of potential customers and increase their lead generation. Offer and encourage your exhibitors to use marketing tools to drive attendees to your event and their booth.

#4. Social media makes the difference:

A great deal has been written about using social media, but it truly is the key to reaching a larger and wider audience for your event. Think of it as an enhanced version of the invite-a-colleague campaign. Get your exhibitors and attendees to embrace the use of social media to leverage their existing contacts and create new ones. 

#5. Don’t forget about your speakers: 

Your speakers are a valuable asset and can help promote your event to additional audiences. View your speakers as your social media evangelists and offer them promo event codes to share via social media.

Marketing your event begins with your data. Capturing, analyzing and leveraging your data from your past events is the key. Use that data to implement these five strategies and attract enthusiastic attendees and exhibitors to your next event.

Add new comment

Partner Voices
HERE, hosting responsible meetings and caring for our communities are top priorities. Through its 'Focused on What Matters: Embracing Humanity and Protecting the Planet' philosophy, MGM Resorts commits to creating a more sustainable future, while striving to make an impact in the lives of employees, guests, and the communities in which it operates. Water Stewardship Efforts MGM Resorts understands the importance of using water efficiently, especially in the desert destination of Las Vegas. Conserving water has always been part of the mission, but MGM Resorts has expanded its ambition into water stewardship. In 2022, MGM Resorts President and CEO Bill Hornbuckle signed the CEO Water Mandate—a UN Global Compact initiative mobilizing business leaders to advance water stewardship. MGM Resorts International was the first gaming company to take this important step. MGM Resorts replaced 200,000 square feet of real grass with drought-tolerant landscaping in Las Vegas. MGM Resorts pledges to reduce water withdrawal intensity by 33% by 2025 and by 35% by 2030. From 2007-2021, use of more than 5.6 billion gallons of water was avoided because of conservation efforts. Caring for One Another MGM Resorts’ Food Donations Program collects and preserves unserved food from conventions held at MGM Resorts properties, then safely donates to food insecure people in the community. Since the program’s launch in 2016, more than 3.7 million meals toward a 2025 goal of 5 million meals have been donated into the community. Donations include: Unserved perishable prepared foods from events Perishable unprepared food from MGM Resorts’ kitchens Nonperishable food items from minibars and warehouses The collaboration with Southern Nevada’s primary food bank, Three Square, has developed the infrastructure needed to safely collect, transport, and store food from MGM Resorts properties in Las Vegas, reducing food waste while serving the community. Fostering Diversity and Inclusion To MGM Resorts, a diverse and talented workforce is essential to success. By cultivating innovative strategies that consider multiple perspectives and viewpoints, the company creates an inclusive workplace culture that benefits its employees and community. MGM Resorts takes pride in being a welcoming home for veterans, individuals with disabilities, people from diverse backgrounds, LGBTQ+ community members, and more. This commitment to inclusion is reflected in the company's recruitment and hiring practices and its social responsibility initiatives. From the workplace to the community, MGM Resorts' commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion remains unwavering, and its efforts continue to create a more equitable and sustainable world for all. MGM Resorts understands its responsibility to contribute to the social and economic progress of the communities in which it operates. HERE, we embrace humanity.