by Matt Alderton | March 20, 2018
The godly voice in the classic baseball movie "Field of Dreams" was wrong when it said, "If you build it, they will come." Instead, it should have said, "If you market it, they will come." That's especially true of meetings and events, which rely as much on good marketing to put butts in seats as they do on good programming.
In a rapidly changing marketing landscape, however, what constitutes "good" marketing remains a mystery to many event organizers. To help them crack the code, the Center Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) has launched a new series of reports focused on event marketing, it announced today.

Titled "How to Grow Attendance," the new series will comprise four reports to be published throughout 2018. The first, "Report One: Planning and Goal Setting that Positions Efforts for Success," was published today. Totaling 18 pages, it documents the most popular approaches event organizers use to reach potential attendees, discusses event organizers' biggest marketing challenges, and presents the strategies that are most successful at generating growth.

Its bottom-line conclusion: While approaches vary, those who are successful focus on achieving goals and metrics that are defined at the outset of a marketing campaign.
"The 'How to Grow Attendance' series offers a lifeline to attendee marketers who may feel overwhelmed by today's fast-changing marketing environment," said CEIR CEO Cathy Breden. "This research offers a roadmap of the most popular marketing approaches and, most importantly, which characteristics are tied to success in growing attendance. Attendee marketing teams can use these tools to evaluate what they are doing and develop ways to enhance the outcome of their efforts."

Remaining reports in the "How to Grow Attendance" series are: "Part Two: Marketing Channel Mix and Other Tactics that Drive Growth," "Part Three: Messaging that Resonates and Delivers," and "Part Four: Plans on Where to Improve Approach in Near-term Future."