With most of the hype these days focused on influencer and content marketing, it feels like traditional paid advertising doesn’t get enough love. While considered “traditional”, the advancements in Facebook and Google ads over the last few years have kept these options as viable as ever.
Online ads face challenges like ad blockers and user desensitization. But, have advantages against dropping organic social media engagement and loose influencer metrics.
What has always made paid ads dependable is the ability to receive quick and accurate reporting. It doesn’t matter how many ads are blocked or ignored if your conversions and ROI reach your goals. These firm metrics are a benefit in themselves, helping marketers improve and keeping clients fully in the loop.
On top of ecommerce, we’ve found event promotion does very well with a paid advertising strategy. Up against their own deadline to sell tickets, along with similar events or events held on the same day, events have to stay competitive in promoting and marketing.
Six tips to improve your paid Facebook and Google Ads when promoting events
1. Monitor and update frequently
Unlike most products or services, events are always racing against the clock. With a window of several months or weeks from announcing the event to event day, it’s worth investing your time into your paid ad campaign while you can.
Every day counts and your results will grow the more you can monitor, update, and adjust your campaign. This includes if you’re A/B testing different copy, graphics, or video ads, as well as what audiences you’re targeting.
Maybe certain graphics aren’t resonating with certain audiences? Maybe it’s worth testing new copy on the same audience? You won’t know the answers to these questions until you try. And the longer you wait to update and adjust, the more potential conversions you could be missing.
2. Leverage lead times and urgency
“…events costing £51 ($65USD) or more, where over 50% of people booked their place at least 3 months in advance (rising to 70% when a ticket costs over £201 ($256 USD).” – Eventbrite
It’s vital to take advantage of the lead time before your event. If an event is pricey, it’ll take more consideration from potential attendees before they invest their time and money. They have to organize with their friends, consider their budget, as well as other events they rather go to that day or with that money.
This means the earlier you start leading potential attendees through your sales funnel, the better. This the longer lead time leads to more real-time data, letting you further improve your campaign as you get closer to your deadline.
As it gets closer to your event, it pays to update your ads to reflect that and drive urgency. Have graphics and copy lined up when you hit milestones, such as several different percentages of tickets sold or a countdown of days until the event.
If tickets aren’t selling, you could consider tactics that don’t reduce the perceived value of your event. For example, instead of reducing ticket prices, offer a deal on group purchases, a giveaway, or a discount on an upsell. If you have a long lead time with pricier tickets, you could launch with a discount, with early buyers helping to promote by telling their friends they’re going or sharing on social media.
3. Remarketing for reminders
With urgency driving both you to sell tickets and potential attendees to buy them, remarketing is invaluable.
If you’re not familiar with this, remarketing through Facebook Pixel (which includes Instagram) and Google Ads lets you display ads to people who’ve already shown interest in your event.
With many interested people not wanting to commit yet, still on the fence, or just waiting till the last minute to book, a few reminders could be the tipping point on making the sale. And that sale could involve them finally convincing their group of friends to grab tickets too.
4. Keep ads varied but branding consistent
While following the tips above, you also need to keep your branding consistent. Your ads could be appearing on Facebook, Instagram, or as banner ads through Google. They could use a variety of copy, images, graphics, or video. For example, ads could change up to drive urgency or someone could see a general ad, as well as an ad targeted to their gender for the same event.
This mix is important to reach people wherever they are on the internet, while also not feeling repetitive. Whatever the placement, ad type, or visuals, the viewer should instantly know it’s for the same event. Even if they don’t fully absorb the ad message, they subconsciously register the reminder.
5. Gather your own data
There are tons of general stats you can find on when, where, and how to run paid ad campaigns, but nothing is as valuable as building your own campaign data. Frequent monitoring and updates will give you the strongest data set during a campaign, which will lead to an even stronger follow-up event.
If your events repeat once or several times a year, there is no excuse to not learn more about your audience and improve your results each time.
6. Supplement with social media giveaways
Giveaways are a quick and easy way to drive engagement to organic social media posts and are also perfect to combine with a promoted social post or ad.
A promoted social post will get you fast exposure to your targeted group that an organic post wouldn’t. Then with the giveaway encouraging shares, likes, and/or comments to enter, you’ll reach an exponential amount of potential sales.
A banner ad mentioning a giveaway can drive more clicks, potentially moving people closer to buying than they would without a giveaway.