We need creative people more than ever in this age of austerity. It’s the artists, designers, makers, musicians, performers, potters, sculptors, film makers and writers who have the power to get us through these bleak times - not just through their creations, but also their ability to generate ideas....

 

Shoestring

Well, OK, boots...

 

... they make the world an interesting and fun place to be. It’s a shame that the government can’t see this. One of my most frequently asked questions is: ‘how can I promote my event/exhibition?’ My head then floods with loads of questions! The thing is, marketing is not something just tagged on at the end – it needs to be integral to all your plans. Marketing is the whole management process behind your project, integral to every decision you make right from the start. The definition of marketing has not changed, it’s just that we have a lot more tools at our disposal these days. This is great news for entrepreneurs starting a new business or anyone working on a shoe string.

 

Remember that promotion is just one aspect of marketing. It involves:

 

  • Advertising
  • Sales promotion
  • Selling
  • PR (on and off line)


‘PR’ stands for public relations – it is what you do, what you say and what others say about you. Don't waste too much time trying for government funding because there's so little available. So, plan ahead and invest the time – it will all pay off in the end. If you are planning an event or an exhibition and don’t have the budget, here is a checklist to help you on your way. You need ...

 

  • ... to make sure you have an up-to-date newsgroup for:

1. potential customers who will visit your show or event

2. press contacts: specialist, national and local newspaper and magazine editors, radio, TV

3. on-line events guides in your area

 

  • ... a strong press release that brings everything alive with lovely stories and a theme. This needs to be on one side of A4 (5 months in advance) and sent to glossy magazines and used later with other media

 

  • ... plenty of high quality images at 300 pixels per inch and saved as a jpeg at maximum quality – these can be sent to magazines and posted on the web

 

  • ... set up all relevant online communication channels like Face Book, LinkedIn, You Tube and Twitter

 

  • ... get out more and start telling the right people!


I wish you every success with your exhibition or event – I do hope that all this preparation pays off and that you get lots of appreciative visitors – look after them and don’t forget to collect their email addresses as they pass through!

 

© Tessa Webb, January 2011

www.creativesintobusiness.com