Sunday, December 10, 2006

December Tip: Create a Marketing Plan for Your Festival

Yes, even festivals should have a marketing plan!

Why? Because as an event promoter, it makes your life easier! It outlines what you're going to do and when - and gives you a detailed budget to help you avoid making major plans at the last minute.

A marketing plan also gives you an opportunity to be honest with yourself. Is your event popular? Is it growing in attendance? Revenue? If not, why? Where are your attendees coming from? Are they new or repeats? Do you have any competition? Why? Where? When? Are your vendor fees in line with where they need to be? Do you have vendor turnover? Why?

If your event has been successful, why? How can you continue building an outstanding festival?

Are you always trying to find sponsors at the last minute? When do you do your soliciting? That is included in the Action Calendar of a festival marketing plan - and allows you to plan a year or more in advance - to get the BIG dollars.

How are you promoting your event? Do you just do it locally? Statewide? Nationally? How? Are you using blogs? Yes, you read that right - blogs - free, quick and easy promotional tools that grow legs 'round the globe!

A marketing plan is important, yet needs to be flexible. You never know when a new radio station will pop up in your market, a potential new cash sponsor will move into the neighborhood or when you get an American Idol in your backyard. Those are components you'll never know to include in your plan, but can be added when opportunities arise.

December Marketing Tip -- A marketing plan doesn't pull any punches. It shows you in black and white where you're on target - and where you're missing the boat. It's a guide that will ultimately make your life much easier!

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