- Understand why you need to market your event space and venue
- The importance of each section of your listing
- 5 Ways To Optimize Your EventUp Listing
- Real examples and how to improve
- How to capitalize on the EventUp portal
- Marketing channels that work well with EventUp
Marketing 101: Marketing Basics For Event Managers
As an event manager, you have to wear many hats in your role - and it’s impossible to be an expert in all areas of the business.
In this Marketing 101 guide, we walk you through 6 of these key areas to help you understand the “why” and “how” to market your event space and events program more effectively on the EventUp venue directory.
After reading through this guide you will be able to build an optimized EventUp listing that includes the photos and information event planners are searching for. Be able to properly market your listing across your social channels, and take full advantage of everything your EventUp portal offers you.
As the Sr. Marketing Manager for EventUp, I read and view a lot of listings. I haven’t exactly read all 15,000 listings that are currently live on the site, but I certainly have viewed a significant portion of them. On a daily basis, I come across listings that perform well and those that are simply missing a propper marketing mindset.
Why You Should Market Your Event Space And Venue
Folks can stumble upon your website or social accounts. Maybe someone is doing preliminary event research, looking for local venues, or searching for a cuisine type in your area. These people might be curious about event spaces, but more often they are looking for your menu or to make a reservation, they’re not actively searching for a venue to host an event happening in the near future.
Letting the world know that you host private events at your venue must be a focused and specific marketing campaign. Planning an event is a longer process than simply making a reservation - planners are looking for much more detailed information, photos, and an ongoing relationship with an event manager they can trust.
Hosting private events at your venue can make up to 30% or more of the total venue revenue because of the upcharges, room fees, and other revenue-driving services that social, and corporate planners are willing to pay.
Thinking about how you are going to market your venue and event spaces must be top of mind if you want to increase your overall revenue by 30%. If you want your events calendar to be booked month after month, planners need to know that you are open and available to host events.
Important sections of your listings
When you are setting up your EventUp venue listing, it’s easy to build it in a silo and assume that viewers will have prior knowledge of your venue and space. Some will, but most will have no prior knowledge of your brand and who you are.
It’s better to be thorough and detailed about who you are and what you offer.
Let’s build your venue listing to start collecting new event leads!
In your EventUp account, under “My Listings” you will have access to all your venue listings. Select the one you want to Build or Edit.
Name: This is the full name of your restaurant - for this post, we are using our mock listing “Porcupine and Bear”
Description: This area is a summary of your venue. You will want to explain in detail how great your venue is. What types of events you can accommodate, your offerings, your menu, and what makes your venue unique. How does your venue stand out amongst the crowd?
Help a planner understand who you are and what it would feel like to host an event with you. What would the get planner get, what packages do you offer, and the types of vendors do you work with.
You want to use relevant keywords in your text description such as event types and venue types.
TIP: Don’t just copy and paste over information from your website, It’s bad for SEO and your website may be geared towards individual guests more than events and parties.
Photos: Event planners are highly visual folks and the first thing they will notice about your venue within the search results are the photos you select.
We recommend adding 5 -10 photos. Venues with 3 or more see a 33% increase in listing page views.
You will want to use professional photography when available. Photos should be high-quality with tons of natural light, the minimum size allowed is 960x640 pixels with the maxim and ideal size being 1920x1080 pixels. Photos that are too small will appear blurry.
You can upload or drag and drop photos then rearrange them in the order you want them displayed.
The first photos in the lineup will be seen on the search results - make it your BEST photo.
Once you add photos, you can add captions or add them to a specific Private Room.
TIP: Landscape photos look best.
Address: This is the physical address of your venue. The Google Map will automatically populate once your address has been entered.
If your venue is in a larger city such as New York City or Los Angeles, you can select specific neighborhoods that make sense for you.
TIP: You have the option to hide your address if your venue is a residential home you are renting out for private events.
Location Details: Select all that APPLY to your venue - these are what drive the search results when planners are selecting their filters.
TIP: We do not recommend selecting ALL amenities as this can create a frustrating experience for event planners when they later find out you do not actually have an amenity that they require for their particular event.
Pricing: Under the pricing section, you have the ability to set different prices for weeknights versus weekends as well as weddings.
Even if most events are highly customizable, which can change the overall price, event planners are looking for a starting budget or guideline to determine if your venue is realistically within their budget.
Availability: The availability is simply the hours you are open and available to host events each day of the week.
Miscellaneous Details: This section is where you input guest counts allowed for both seated and standing events.
Since food and beverage menus change so frequently with the seasons and what's available - we have simplified the options with a few drop-down selections to choose from.
Areas, Facilities, or Rooms: Add a new block for each private event space or area you have to offer. Each should be labeled and have a unique write-up describing that space, what types of events it is perfect for and how many guests it can hold.
TIP: Make sure to add a photo to any of the separate areas you include so planners can visually see what space is perfect for their event.
FAQs: Add your most frequently asked questions about events and parties at your venue to help answer as many questions as you can during the browsing phase for event planners.
5 Ways To Optimize Your EventUp Listing
1. Keep your listing up-to-date with fresh photos
A picture is worth a thousand words, but multiple images are even better. The sweet spot is between five to ten high-quality images. What do we mean by high quality? The first image should be a wide, bright image of the main room. Think about what differentiates your venue and allows the photo to capture the space’s uniqueness. Further, this image shows up on the search page within the website, so a striking image is the best way to make a strong first impression on event organizers. Post photos that reflect the type of events hosted in your space. For example, if you are a wedding venue, display a photo of your space set up for the special day. If your space has windows, take a photo during the day to capture and show the venue’s natural light. Additional images should show private and semi-private rooms.
2. Respond quickly when event organizers submit quote requests.
An event organizer’s expectation for venue response times is sky-high, but it is important to respond to a quote request within 48 hours. You will close more businesses if you respond faster than your competitors. If you have abnormal business hours or an unconventional work schedule, set up automated responses (more information below) in your EventUp account to establish an initial touchpoint with potential clients, and communicate when you will follow up with more information.
3. Extend Permission Access to other team members as a way to manage inbound leads.
Has business picked up over the last few weeks? Maybe the busy season just started? Do you lack the capacity to respond to every single lead? Although this is an excellent problem to have, every minute within the events industry is vital and valuable. Delegate some of the work to your team members through the Permission Access feature. This feature allows your team members to respond to potential clients and quote requests.
4. Recognize seasonal moments throughout the year. Use them to your advantage!
The first step is to take a look at a calendar and identify moments throughout the year that could bring in big business. The next step involves updating your listing to address those moments or seasons. This update should take place at least three months before the moment or season you want to target. As you know, event organizers are searching for spaces several months (or a year!) ahead of their events. Capitalize on popular times throughout the year by updating your listing. For example - say your business goal is to book your space every weekend over the winter holiday season. Consider uploading images from previous holiday parties or updating the ‘The Space’ section with a holiday-related description of your venue.
5. Optimize for Google SEO Keywords
Make sure your listing contains the top event keywords that are searched by Event Planners on Google. Google will then read your listing and you will have a better chance of showing up in search results. Also, leverage this list of keywords for your own website!
Top Keywords include:
Banquet Facility, Best Restaurants, Best Restaurants for Events, Bridal Shower, Cocktail Parties, Cocktail Receptions, Corporate Events, Event Space, Event Spaces, Group Dining, Holiday Parties, Large Group Dining, Corporate Meeting, Party Rooms and Restaurants, Private Cocktail Parties, Private Dining, Private Dining Room, Private Dining Rooms, Private Dining Spaces, Private Event Space, Private Events, Private Meeting Spaces, Private Meetings, Private Party Planning, Private Party Venue, Rehearsal Dinner, Semi-private event space, Special Events, Unique Event Venue, Wedding Receptions, Wedding Shower
Real-World Examples Of How To Improve Your Listing
As noted above, the first thing events planners will see from your listing are your photos. If your photos are dark, pixelated, and low quality, planners will not be intrigued to want to learn more about your space. Event planners are highly visual people and are looking to make an emotional connection with your space. If planners don’t get a good feeling from your photos, they will move on to other high-quality, beautiful photos that draw them in.
If your venue offers private rooms or spaces in addition to a full buyout, you should be utilizing The Space section. Here you can identify each space that can be rented along with a unique description and photos of that space. Planners get a better sense of your space offerings and the ideal section that would be perfect for their event guest list and theme.
This venue is very proud of its pizza oven, which it should be. But this is telling event planners that they ONLY offer pizza, even if that’s not correct. Any planner looking to plan an event and looking for more than pizza as a food option will ultimately leave this listing and look for a venue that offers the food selections they are looking for. Without the venue realizing it, they are limiting themselves on who will actually submit a quote request to them.
This venue left the Amenities section blank which is a big no-no. The advanced filters that each planner selects for their ideal event pull from the amenities that each venue adds to its listing.
So, if a planner selects A/V equipment, rooftop, or a stage that is required for their event. You will want your venue to appear in the search results if you have these options. By leaving them off your listing, the search results will not pull your listing in and you will miss out on event leads.
Don’t just say you can hold weddings, showers, and birthday parties. Explain with color what it would be like for me to hold my wedding/shower/party at your venue. What do I get? What are my options? What have you done in the past for others? Write your detailed descriptions of your events programs, and past events, with real examples.
How To Capitalize On Your EventUp Portal
In your EventUp portal, visit My Listings, then Auto Responses. This is where you will input your email messages.
Setting up Automated Responses in your EventUp portal can be completed in minutes yet has many benefits for both you and your customers. Once you have set up your Automated Responses within your portal, it’s an easy way to further delight your customers and provide them with an overall positive experience. Delighted customers become repeat customers, and promote your venue to their family and friends.
Auto Responses Per Event Type
With EventUp’s Auto Responses feature, you have the ability to create separate Auto Response messages for different event types. This way you can further customize the information you provide back to the event planner based on the type of event they are looking to plan.
A wedding planner may need very different information than someone planning a birthday celebration. Creating different messages allows you to customize each individual message when it makes sense for your events business.
You have the ability to select multiple event types if one message will cover the needs for those. If there are particular event types that you do not accommodate, you can simply leave those off your selections.
Why You Should Add Your EventUp Listing Link To Your Website
Drive more traffic and leads to your venue
The more places that you can share your EventUp listing link, the more exposure you gain which drives traffic and ultimately new leads. On the EventUp blog and social accounts, we are always sharing and featuring EventUp venues because it drives new business back to you.
Sharing your EventUp listing link on your website and in your marketing efforts also helps with search engine optimization (SEO) and Google ranking. With both EventUp and your brand sharing the link - it creates backlinks that tell the Google algorithm that our brand's trust and support each other which further increases the chances of appearing higher in Google search results. The higher you appear in Google search results, the more exposure you gain therefore driving even more traffic and leads.
Never miss out on event revenue again
Taking full advantage of the Booked Messages / Archived filing system in your EventUp portal guarantees that an event inquiry is never missed again. The average event is worth $2,500, missing out on any event inquiry is lost revenue potential. Miss a few over the course of the year, and that revenue adds up quickly and has a big negative impact on your bottom line. Having an organized and streamlined view of all of your open leads ensures that every lead gets the attention it deserves so you can convert it into a booked event and collect revenue for the business.
Take Advantage Of Marketing With EventUp
The marketing with EventUp program: we offer three packages that have been designed to benefit both EventUp and the customer without interrupting the event planner audience.
What Social Channels Your Venue Should Be On
In today’s current climate it is more important than ever for guests, customers, and potential customers to know exactly what restaurants and venues are open, how they are serving the community, and the venue’s safety protocols so that guests can decide if they feel comfortable enough to visit the establishment or plan a future event with them.
Now that you have read through this guide you are able to build an optimized EventUp listing that includes the photos and information event planners are searching for. Be able to properly market your listing across your social channels, and take full advantage of everything your EventUp portal offers you.
Not an EventUp venue yet? Schedule a demo with one of our growth managers to explore our listing packages.
Author: Nicole Catatao