I get to manage a lot of calendars as part of my life and there’s something I see people doing consistently to really hurt attendance of their events. From car shows to community events, people are truly limiting how effective their messaging is to the people they’d like to attend those events. But how do you spread the word about community events so that people will find them in the first place?
Let’s face it - there are so many ways to deliver messaging nowadays that telling the world about your event is something that can very easily get lost. Even if you get to the right people, it’s still entirely possible that they will forget about your event when it rolls around.
I’ve noticed that Facebook is getting more and more capable when it comes to spreading the news and then reminding people about events. Other services, like Eventbrite, are working on the nanny factor in that they want to remind you of an event as well. So what is the best way to get the word out about an event?
One of the things I see in managing several events calendars including possibly the most popular car show calendar in the US is that people provide very, very little information about their events to us. So often I see people submit events to the Curbside Car Show Calendar and the first thing listed is all the stuff you can’t do or can’t bring. Usually there is very little after this although somewhere in there is information that would actually attract people to the event. Sometimes.
This is also the case on several local calendar resources that I see. There is so little information and the main point is often buried in the listing, if it’s made at all.
So my first piece of advice is to find the local or relevant calendars to your event and then submit as much information as you are allowed to and start with the reason someone would want to come to your event. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to even create a boilerplate document in your favorite word processor with things that won’t change, such as your website, contact information and things like that.
If you’re listing a car show, maybe the fun things the public can enjoy like food trucks, beverages, bands, the number of vehicles anticipated, any raffles or giveaways and that sort of thing should be the first things in the listing.
When I went to journalism school we were taught to lead with the “five ‘w’s and an ‘h’” - who, what, when, why and how. In a calendar listing I would say lead with what will be of most interest to people.
In your listing don’t forget information about how and where to get tickets, if possible, and whom to contact for more information. You should also very, very clearly put where the event is going to be held.
As you know, you should always have a website and the listing should include a link to your website where the event in question i