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Getting out into the community

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s remarkable how much our society has learned to accomplish from behind a computer screen. And, while these technological advances have proved successful for many business operations, there is still something to be said about in-person human interaction. As public relations professionals, our goal is to reach target audiences with valuable information to inform and illicit behavior change. Outside of tactics like media outreach and digital communications, boots-on-the-ground tactics continue to provide value and allow PR pros to mobilize key messages, sharing them directly with the audiences they are intended for. Getting out in the community and meeting your target audiences where they are – whether it be a community event, conference or trade show – is a strategy the communications industry should consider returning to, with thoughtful consideration and execution.

Audience is everything

When selecting which events you should add to your calendar, the most important consideration is who you’re trying to reach. Think about your target audiences’ demographics, hobbies and interests (both personal and professional), and use those as focus points to narrow down your search for the perfect events. For example, if you’re trying to reach homeowners, consider attending a community movie night, or if your goal is to reach individuals who are in a certain industry sector, attend a trade show that directly links to their profession. Regardless, you must consider the relevancy of your clients’ organization and if the people attending the event would have interest in not only talking to you but also in walking away informed and interested in acting in alignment with your goals.

Booth appeal

Once your event is booked, and the specifications for your booth are set, then what? This is the fun part – equipping your booth with the pizzazz and materials that will catch the attention of event attendees. From pull-up banners to tablecloths and fixtures, all materials must be cohesively branded and represent your organization in a way that is both inviting and memorable. If applicable, you can add an experiential feature to your space to draw people in or have branded tchotchkes to give away, but most important is having materials that clearly communicate what your organization is, does and wants its target audiences to remember. Keeping your messages simple and concise will help ensure they are easily digestable and memorable for your target audiences as they walk by your space.

The right spokespersons

On top of your booth design, those staffing your booth are also a physical representation of your brand. They are the representatives who will ultimately bring people in and provide the key messages and information directly to target audiences. You can never be too knowledgeable, but booth staff should be prepared to speak about important information in small, digestible snippets that event attendees can comprehend without any background knowledge of your organization. If available, consider speaking opportunities at the event where your client can present or give a speech to further communicate key messages and drive attendees to your booth for further information.

Need help securing opportunities to tell your organization’s story out in the community? Give us a call.