If You Pre-promote It, They Will Come
By Lynn McCullough Director of Meetings & Association Management, CMA Association Management | May 06, 2010
Those of us who represent hotels or convention centers should know that promoting attendance for a conference, convention or tradeshow-without getting to know those you're trying to lure, is like playing poker blindfolded: You can bet all you want, but you won't win anything.
The same holds true for "pre-promoting" these events. Pre-promoting is more than just providing copies of your facility's brochure, or promoting the main attractions and sites to see in your host city. Pre-promoting is also about asking yourself the following questions: Who? Where? What? When? Why? - and How?
Below, members of the Association for Convention Operations Management (ACOM) offer some tips to help you find out the answers to these important questions and explore other ways to conduct a pre-promote to better service your meeting-planner clients.
There's No Substitute for Being There
If possible, Devon Sloan, CMP, director of events for the Hilton Tucson El Conquistador Golf and Tennis Resort, suggests actually attending the group's event the year prior. "Whether it's just to schmooze with the attendees and get to know them a little better, or to have an actual trade show booth set up in their exhibit area, we have found this to be a great attendance builder," says Sloan. "It helps attendees get to know the city and the resort because we can answer all of their questions in person-and of course, we can build excitement by doing a little sales job while we are talking. Who knows the property and the city better than those of us who live there!"
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