August 20, 2013 by Jeff Hurt
People who have the @Work State of Mind are exposed to a fire hose of constant communication.
This communication comes from a variety of sources including customers, supervisors, suppliers, co-workers, family members, friends, professional colleagues and social networks.
Their @Work State of Mind offers a wonderful opportunity to engage them in considering your conference messaging. And it offers a fantastic opportunity for them to engage their families, friends, professional colleagues and social networks with your messaging as well.
These @Work State of Mind executives have double purchasing power for both their own needs and the needs of their companies. They are constantly screening devices of all sizes reading messages. They are always in the engagement zone considering solutions and making decisions.
Here are some tips to consider when engaging the most engaged gleaned from Forbes and gyro @Work State of Mind Report.
Today, executives are always on. They may not be always engaged in thinking about work although they are reachable and can engage in a heartbeat. This state of always being on has grown from our love of our community. As Adam Swann, Head of Strategy, gyro says, “It’s human instinct to want to be involved, to know what’s going on, to feel part of the community, a tribe, to feel you have significance.”
Your conference messaging should help connect them deeper with their tribe and highlight how it will make their community grow.
Many decision makers know that information is online when they need it. They see this as a business advantage. This increased accessibility has decreased the need for conventional marketing. Today’s conference organizers and marketers have to become listeners to their customers and adapt to their hot spots instead of just becoming dispensers of information. Conference messaging must change from traditional boundaries to more reflect decision makers’ desire to learn, understand and know how to apply.
One-size fits all broadcast conference messaging is out. Segmented, conference messaging to specific audience segments is key to success. Identifying influencers and taking advantage of their power in discussions, decisions and debates is an important and vital step. However, that conference messaging must be authentic, sincere and genuine and actually helpful or the influencers will turn on you.
Two-way conference messaging allows communities and influencers to be part of the communication and provide instant feedback as well as spreadable information. Remember, the new feedback loop allows everyone to be a recommendation engine as well as a critic.
These messages are critical shapers of the conference attendee experience. They shape and mold executives’ expectations of that conference and what they as well as their employees can expect to learn. If the messaging feels disconnected and out of touch with decision makers, they automatically assume your conference will feel the same.
We are all irritated by broadcast messaging that interrupts our work flow. Sending messaging that feels like you’re shouting or yelling to attract attention has a negative impact. Conference messaging has to be more than just helpful information about registration, fees, hotels and schedules. It should help decisions makers do their jobs better. In short, conference messaging begins to drip out short, targeted, helpful work-related content from the conference early and consistently in order to attract paying decision makers.
The blurring of personal and professional lives has influenced not only where and when people are making decisions. It has also influenced how people make decisions. More than 75% of executives said their personal values were important or critically important when making business decisions more than ROI or financial benchmarks. Your conference messaging must resonate with or inform their value systems. To paraphrase U.K. marketer Chris Combemale, conference messaging must move beyond mere transactional, rational decision making and focus on the conference’s values, tone of voice and subjective benefits.
Regardless how professional your conference audience is, conferences that are more alluring, hip, cool and cutting edge will win out over those that are purely functional and average. Decision makers want to align with those that make them appear to be more in the know and forward thinking.
What experience do you have with sending conference messaging at nontraditional work hours? Which of these tips resonate with you and why?
Filed Under: Attendance Marketing
Very interesting and engaging piece (as always Jeff). I read this will real interest as I had no idea who was being identified as a ‘work state of mind’ person. After reading it I though: that’s me! So I hope I can look at this from the perspective of an organiser and a work minded individual. So firstly from an organiser perspective. It is undeniable that we have to work harder than ever to attract attendees. It reemphasises my point that it has never been so hard to market our events. I wonder how many owners of event businesses, heads of associations and managers of planners realise how much harder it is just to keep the same level of interest from previous years?
Tailored marketing messages are crucial in attracting these individuals and open communication is a must to have these truly engaged individuals involved and supporting your events. But are the owners and leaders in businesses that run events supporting planners? My experience says not. We must encourage and educate them.
Articles which bring these issues to the fore are crucial if we are to really deliver value. The way we market, design, display our events has to change. But that change means more involvement from the organiser, demands a more all rounded planner and our industry has to support those changes.
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