Planning and hosting a promotion takes a lot of work. Sure, the days and nights of putting together and executing event are important, but if no one shows up, then all that hard work is for naught. That's why having a strong public relations strategy can make a forgettable event into something people are talking about for months.
“It’s exciting to put on an event, and there are many elements involved in creating a successful one, including promoting it,” says Jamie Lynn Sigler, founding partner of J Public Relations. Here Sigler names six more tips to ensure your promos are successful.
1. Execute. Execute. Execute. Execution should be an owner's top priority, Sigler says. Promoting the event is only as good as the event itself. “Just as much effort that is put into promoting the event should be put into the execution. You want to ensure your guests have a great experience after all the time and money spent on getting them there.”
2. Make friends with the media. “Reach the media in a creative way,” Sigler advises. She suggests creating a special VIP pre-event for media so they experience the event beforehand. Are they able to speak with owners? What will get them to cover the event for their outlets; helping the bar or club “create buzz.” For example, Sigler’s client San Diego nightclub Fluxx changes its theme every quarter from décor to staff outfits. Before the new theme is launched, media are invited for a sneak peek VIP preview, which keeps the club fresh in the minds of the media.
3. Be innovative. “Continue to keep your business innovative with new ideas, including charity partnerships, industry events or juxtaposition events,” Sigler says. Thinking outside the box creates an opportunity for added publicity.
4. Form a long-lasting bond with PR agencies. Often, bar and nightclub owners will hire a PR firm to help promote events but don’t wait until the last minute to start building that relationship, Sigler says. “PR agencies need to work with the media’s lead time to garner pre-publicity for events to reach the company’s audience,” she says.
5. Create buzz. Social media can build excitement around an event. Bar and nightclub owners should use Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to their benefit. They are “all great platforms to reach your audience and share exciting events and their details,” she says.
6. Have a game plan. Above all else, owners should include a PR strategy into their promotion planning. “Make sure you go into any opening, event or promotion with a strategic plan, including marketing, publicity and execution,” Sigler says.
Jamie Lynn Sigler is an accomplished public relations professional and savvy entrepreneur. In 2005, she co-founded bi-coastal public relations agency, J Public Relations (JPR), which is now regarded as one of the top travel and hospitality public relations firms in the industry. A recognized and respected expert in the PR world, Jamie has been instrumental in launching and publicizing some of the nation’s most prestigious hotels, restaurants and nightclubs. Jamie’s strengths lie in building solid client relationships, creative campaigns, trendsetting within the industry and strategy that scores top media placements.