The 5 ways to (Automatically) Improve Promotion of Your Annual Meeting

If yours is like most associations, you conduct an Annual Meeting or Conference that is one of the centerpiece activities of the entire year.

These events are typically of critical importance to both the revenue and perceived overall health of the organization, so effective promotion that maximizes attendance will always be a worthwhile goal.

A new approach to consider is applying the capabilities of Marketing Automation to your Annual Meeting promotions process. Even if you can’t yet commit to moving forward with a new system this year, you can still take steps now that will position you to take fuller advantage of the capabilities later.

Each year you wrap up promotions of the Annual Meeting and then you start the process all over again – let this year be the time you lay the foundation to significantly improve next year’s promotions!

Think about these five ways that Marketing Automation can help improve Annual Meetings promotion:

Time Savings Clock

More Relevant and Timely Email Campaigns

Marketing Automation makes it easy for you to both understand and react to the interests of your invitees based on individual behavior. First, by monitoring actions such as which emails each person opens, which links they click, which of your social messages they react to and which web pages they visit, you will better understand the interests of each recipient and tailor your subsequent emails to them accordingly. As an example, you could create, in advance, appropriate email messages that will be sent to any individual who visits the web page that describes a certain track at your conference. Their exploration of this track is an indication of interest, and you can respond to this in a more relevant way using Marketing Automation.

Your responses will also be more timely, because it’s easy to have your Marketing Automation system send emails at whatever time you decide is appropriate – perhaps one hour or one day after the visit to the track description page described above, or perhaps on a certain date and time. You decide whether you want the timing of each message to be based on the actions of each individual recipient or at a fixed date and time.

Improving the relevance and the timing of messages can make a tremendous difference in earning and maintaining your invitee’s interest.


Better Segment Your Annual Meeting Audiences

Armed with the improved understanding of each invitee’s interests described above, you can create more audience segments than ever before, knowing that you’ll easily be able to send tailored messages to each of them throughout the entire promotional period. Take advantage of enhanced segmentation to speak to your invitees in those terms that interest them most and make sure that they don’t overlook key reasons to attend your conference.

The ideal message is one that each recipient feels was written for them individually, and Marketing Automation functionality allows you to come closer to this than ever before.


Boost Attendance with Automated Abandonment Messaging

You’ve likely experienced the “abandoned shopping cart” functionality of online shopping sites such as Amazon – you place something in your basket and if you don’t actually check out, you receive a reminder email at some point thereafter that invites you to complete the checkout process. This functionality has proved effective across online transactions of all types, including event registrations.

Marketing Automation systems such as that of Real Magnet make it easy to take advantage of these handy reminders for your Annual Meeting registrations. It is very simple to determine the points in the registration process that should be followed up with and to select both the messages that should be sent and when they should be sent. Providing this valet-level service in a purely responsive and time-appropriate manner will both assist your invitees and improve your conversion rates.

Phone Call

Efficiently Respond to Invitee Interest In Ways Other than Email

If you have resources to do things like outbound calling to encourage registration, take advantage of Member Engagement Scoring to pinpoint the different audiences that might merit higher-cost followup such as calls. Perhaps you wish to target invitees who have interacted with conference emails but not yet registered, or perhaps you’d like to reach out by phone to members who have demonstrated an interest throughout the year in certain topics that will be featured at the conference.

Take advantage of this much-improved intelligence to effectively point resources towards higher-probability invitees.


Understand and Respond to the Mobile Preferences of Your Invitees

Studies show that as of late 2014, a majority (51%) of all the emails sent out in the USA were read on phones or tablets rather than computers. Marketing Automation systems like that of Real Magnet will tell you precisely what this percentage is for your various audiences, allowing you to tailor your own policies accordingly. If you find the percentage to be significant among your members, you might choose to make your messages more mobile-friendly. In addition to streamlining layout, this typically means making your messages briefer. Marketing Automation can help you cope with the limitations of brief messages by making it easy for you to send more messages without overwhelming your audiences. You can choose to automatically send a certain message only to those who didn’t open a previous one, for example.

It is also helpful to recognize that even registrations are often complicated (providing credit card information, etc. ) so few invitees will register by phone – instead, take advantage of Marketing Automation functionality to give your invitees a call to action that they will find more convenient and that still advances the registration process – an example would be providing invitees the option of putting a reminder on their own calendar to register at a later date/time.


Annual Meeting Promotion is a demanding and ever-evolving challenge – consider optimizing results and meeting the rising expectations of your members by communicating with them in as personalized, relevant, and timely a manner as possible. To discuss the ways in which Marketing Automation is being used by the Events and Marketing teams at both member-based organizations and the private sector, contact or speak to one of our subject matter experts at 240-743-2941.