June 29, 2023
Event marketing is a form of experiential marketing where a brand interacts with consumers in a real-time, in-person manner. It’s a helpful tool when it comes to generating leads, improving sales, and making people aware of your brand’s products, goals, and beliefs. It’s not a marketing campaign you can plan and execute overnight.
What do every event marketing success stories have in common? They have a firm grasp of the psychological principles that work and why they work.
Psychological Principle #1 – The Fear of Missing Out
The fear of missing out (FOMO) is a driving force behind many consumers’ actions. If there is the chance that a consumer might miss his or her chance at something big, they’re more likely to take action.
Have you ever been on Amazon looking for a specific item to buy and checked out all of the pricing information? You’ve likely seen a highlighted note that only two items are left. If you want one, you need to order quickly or you’ll miss out. That’s FOMO marketing at work.
If you’re hosting an event, offering a discount for a limited time and including a countdown ticker that if you don’t purchase tickets by X date, the price will be doubled or the tickets might be sold out. That’s an incentive as people will buy now to avoid missing out.
Psychological Principle #2 – The Power of Emotional Connections
Emotional connections can make consumers feel like you really know them. Share stories that share more about your brand, what it stands for, and why it makes a difference. If there’s an emotional bond, you’ll gain a lasting fan.
As an example of the emotional connection, have you seen the new Dove ads where they follow the story of a girl who developed body dysmorphia and was hospitalized? That ad is emotional and makes you feel many things ranging from the sadness that she went through this and is on the recovery path, to the anger that the beauty and fashion industry has made girls believe they need to be as thin as possible to be attractive. Their Real Beauty Campaign is a big success when it comes to emotional connections.
Psychological Principle #3 – Reciprocation: Do Something for Me, and I’ll Do Something for You
Another psychological principle that should be part of an event marketing campaign is the act of reciprocation. If you do something for the consumer, they’ll do something for you. Reciprocity is everything in event marketing.
Have you received a product from a brand and been told if you leave a review or share on social media that you’ll get a discount on your next purchase? That’s an example of reciprocity. Another example is the sock brand Bombas. When you purchase a pair of socks, a homeless person receives a free pair of Bombas. You bought the socks, and the brand donates a pair for you.
Psychological Principle #4 – The Power of Persuasive Stories
A persuasive story has the power to draw consumers to a brand and create an urgency to sign up, make a purchase, or complete another desired action. A brand should tell a story that makes a consumer take note and take action.
Apple has a line of very effective persuasive stories for the Emergency SOS feature. You may have seen the ad where the company shares real stories of people who were saved by the Emergency SOS technology, including an older farmer who fell more than 20 feet from a ladder and broke his leg and was all alone. The paddle boarder who got pulled out to sea. The car crash victim who was trapped in a car that was filling with water. This ad is incredibly persuasive at making you feel like this is a brand you need in your life.
Psychological Principle #5 – The Desire to Be Part of Something Big
Everyone loves the idea of being part of something big, and it ties a little into the fear of missing out. If you’re holding a virtual or in-person event and only 50 people can attend, there’s going to be a high demand to be part of that event and get your hands on those limited number of tickets.
It could also be an event where the day’s goals will improve the world, change someone’s life, or help others in some way. People want to be part of life-changing events and will do what it takes.
Are you old enough to remember Live Aid? That multi-stadium concert took place for one day and money went to help starving nations in Africa. Over 160,000 people attended the concerts in the U.S. and the United Kingdom, but people could also watch the live broadcast. They were part of something big and raised $127 million, which is the equivalent of $357,960,294 today.
Psychological Principle #6 – The Propinquity Effect
What is the Propinquity Effect? Have you ever met someone new and felt that instant click that you were going to get along great? You interview for a job, and you get along with the hiring manager so well, you know you’ve found the perfect match, but you can’t state exactly what made you such a great match. It might be similar attitudes about the world, the work you do, or your political leanings.
A good example of this occurs regularly when you’re scrolling TikTok or watching videos on YouTube. You find a video where the vlogger or influencer says or does things that make you hit the like, follow, or subscribe buttons. It makes you want to interact with them. That’s a great example of the Propinquity Effect.
As a marketer, you’ll form the Propinquity Effect when you’re consistent in your interactions with people, find those beliefs that make you similar in nature, and form a bond. You need to keep this up as consumers can be fickle and leave you just as quickly as they became a supporter. Once you’ve held an event, online or in-person, make sure you continue to interact through surveys, follow-up emails, and regular interactions on social media.
Sometimes, It’s Best to Bring in a Pro in Event Marketing Psychology
When you have a firm grasp of the psychological effect event marketing has on consumers, it helps you understand the best ways to reach out. You’ll have the tools you need to draw attention in a positive, beneficial way.
Many companies need guidance to plan and execute memorable, effective event marketing campaigns. In a smaller office, you may not have a marketing team or event marketing is outside of your current employees’ skill sets.
Factory 360 is here to offer the helping hand your company needs. We’ve created award-winning event marketing campaigns for a number of companies, both large and small. Reach out to us with your ideas and let us show you how you can use the psychology of event marketing to bring them to life.