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April 16, 2008

More marketers embrace live event marketing

The latest report by Internet Advertising Bureau and PriceWaterhouseCoopers puts another nail in the coffin of traditional media advertising, stating that the amount spent on advertising in Britain’s national newspapers grew by a miniscule 0.2% to £1.9 billion, radio advertising remains deep in the doldrums and TV advertising continues its serious decline falling back a further 4.7% last year. On the plus side, the survey reports a massive 41.2% rise in internet advertising to £2.01 billion in the past 12 months. So where are marketeers going? You guessed it… Live event marketing!

According to a report by JMA Research, jointly commissioned by events industry “bible” Event magazine and marketing & PR agency Wyndham-Leigh, which measured the views of 200 marketeers with a combined events budget of around £90 million (average spend £447,000), 46% of those polled expect events to play a greater role in their communication strategies in the future. Additionally, 61% say they will allocate more budget to events in the next 12 months.

The survey also shows that marketeers are increasingly recognising the benefits of integrating events into their communication strategies, with a rise of 30% predicted in the use of events to support web/viral driven activity. Other core marketing activities looking set for greater integration with events include: Direct Marketing (+15%); Advertising (+6%); and PR (+4%).

A meeting of old and new

“Ironically, it is event marketing, the oldest kid on the block that is riding the digital wave. It’s not just that event marketing is complementary to digital, but that the two have so much in common, to the exclusion of the traditional mass-market media. The key characteristic of both is ‘pull’ rather than ‘push’ media,” said Trevor Foley, group chief executive of the Events Industry Alliance.

As will come as no surprise to regular viewers of EVENTS:review return on investment (ROI) is shown as a major concern throughout the industry, with 50% of respondents saying they are under quite a lot or a lot of pressure to justify ROI, in contrast to just 10% who say they are not under any pressure. Additionally, only 6% say they are under less pressure to justify their ROI than they were three years ago, while 65% claim to be under more or a lot more pressure.

The survey also asked respondents to rank the marketing disciplines; Advertising, PR, Direct, Web/Viral and Events against the effectiveness measures of Impact, Measurability and Value. Events was voted overall most effective. It scored top in the Impact category and came second to Direct Marketing for Measurability and second to Web/Viral for Value.

 “It’s great news that marketeers believe that live event marketing is effective and will make more use of this powerful medium,” said Foley. “There is no doubt too that the unique full-on brand exposure that events offer can deliver huge ROI. At the Events Industry Alliance (EIA) we are addressing the wider ‘measurement’ issues raised, working on a ‘live event marketing effectiveness’ project that will quantify the added value that live event marketing brings to brands.”

Related items on EVENTS:review
Click to view HAPPY RETURNS: Maximise your event’s ROI
Click to view MEASURE OF SUCCESS: The push for an events evaluation standard
Click to view Virtual reality: How going online can transform every aspect of your event

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