Maintain Your Marketing Presence
By Brian Finn | Marketing Advisor, Unique Venues
I have some breaking news I would like to share with you and you’re probably not going to believe me at first, but hear me out. In the not too distant future we are going to meet again in person, meet in large groups and put the worst year of our lives in the rearview mirror. No, I don’t have access to a vaccine and no, I haven’t hit my head bouncing off the walls of my home during quarantine. As I’ve spent time searching for signs of hope through the darkness of the last 6 months the one thing that’s been proven above all else is that humans truly are social creatures and have a high desire to be around one another. Sure, canceling plans and avoiding others when it’s your choice is OK, but being forced apart has helped us realize how important gathering and social connections are to our well-being.
So now that you’re asking, what does this all mean and how is it going to help me keep the lights on, let me first say congratulations on everything you’ve done to make it this far and remain standing. What we all thought would be a short-term problem has turned into perhaps the worst crisis of our lifetime and you are still here fighting every day. But just surviving is not a plan and neither is simply hope. Developing a long-term strategy and the marketing efforts behind that plan is what it will take for you to prosper as we navigate toward the light.
During times like this when every dollar matters it’s naturally the first thought of many business owners to cut the marketing budget. Now more than ever is the time to keep your online presence up letting current customers and prospective clients know you are here and ready to work with them however you can. Highlighting pivots you have made to accommodate state and provincial social distancing guidelines or accreditations you have earned, such as becoming a GBAC Star Facility, are ways to stand out.
Recently at Unique Venues, we held a panel discussion webinar with current members who discussed their current marketing and sales strategies and the value a continued marketing presence has had for their venue. Our goal was to shine a light on these cases where venue professionals are choosing to be proactive and preparing for an events filled future.
Since March, our message has been clear; to encourage venues to be just as or more visible and to work on the pipeline for future events business. There will be a time when bookings pick back up, and we predict that venues may miss this opportunity if they wait too long to promote themselves. From our own data, profile views are 80% of what they were prior to the crisis. This tells us that while planners aren’t booking just yet, they’re still looking and preparing for when they can do so with confidence.
From our CEO, Chuck Salem, “Be as bold as you can be. Some of us are on our knees, so that means just trying to stand shows boldness. Some of us are still standing, but never take that for granted. Don’t just stand there thankful that you are standing…MOVE! Ask yourself…where are you in this crisis and what are you going to do next?”
If you missed our panel discussion moderated by Dr. Michael Brown of Bowling Green State University click here to watch and learn more about what our members are doing to remain visible and proactive through their membership with Unique Venues.