11 Types of Event Marketing Emails to Send to Your List

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Published on
August 5, 2019

Email marketing is a critical tool for promoting events. You’ll need to hit your list with lots of high-quality email content to build hype and convince your subscribers to register.

We’re not talking about one or two emails here and there, but a long, elaborate campaign that nurtures your list over time, keeps them excited, and gives them all the information and assurance they need to commit to attending your event.

Obviously, you don’t want to spam people with multiple emails every day, but don’t be afraid to send them one or two a week in the months leading up to your event. If you host the same event every year (or multiple events each year), you could even send emails to your list indefinitely, constantly promoting your events.

What should you send? In this article, we’ll go over the 11 types of event marketing emails you should send before your event.

1.  The Hype Email

A hype email could be anything: Images, videos, lessons, sneak peeks, interviews, etc. Send any type of content that captivates people and makes them think about your event.

Focus on content that explains the value behind your event. For instance, if you are hosting a networking event, record a video from one of your past participants where they explain how they used their new connections to advance their career. This will help potential guests see that your event is worth their time and money.

Don't be afraid to get creative here. Your goal is to grab your subscribers’ attention so they are motivated to learn more about your event.

Marketing United uses a simple hype email with a video trailer to build interest.

Event Marketing Emails

2.  The Agenda Email

You may have plenty of information on your website about what will go on at your event, but it’s also important to send that information directly to your email list. Prepare an email that lays out your event agenda. When will doors open? Who will speak? What time is lunch? Where will everyone meet for drinks?

This email doesn’t have any actionable purpose before the event, but it helps to get your attendees excited. It shows them that you’re prepared, organized, and intend to throw a high quality event that will add value to their lives.

3.  The Speaker Introductions

If you’re hosting speakers or presenters, introduce them to your list. Give your subscribers a rundown of who will be speaking, what they will talk about, and their credentials. Your goal is to show your subscribers how much value they will receive by attending your event to listen to the speakers.

If you can, lay out the foundation for each speaker's presentation. This will give your subscribers something to look forward to. Include pictures of each speaker so your subscribers can connect with their faces.

Inbound 2017 knew their speakers were a big part of their event’s value, so they smartly put them front-and-center.

Event Marketing Emails

4.  The Early Bird Email

It’s always best to capture as many registrants as early as possible. If you have to claw to sell every seat, you’ll spend too much time marketing when you should be planning the event. Early registrations are always better, even if you have to give some discounts.

Send an email to your list (or at least your VIP segment) explaining that you’ll give a discount to anyone who registers before open registration starts. Make the discount enticing - at least 20%. Let them know when the early bird period ends and tickets climb to their full price.

Forecast Conference does a great job of this. They limit the number of people who can purchase early bird tickets. This creates a rush that builds hype and collects cash early.

Event Marketing Emails

You may be tempted to offer discounts as you get closer to the event to sell those last openings, but that’s a mistake. If you discount late sign ups, your current registrants will ask you to honor the discount for them too. You could end up refunding more money than you would make from the discounted tickets. Only use discounts early on.

5.  The Formal Invitation

After piquing your audience's interest and enticing them with clever marketing, eventually you will need to send them a formal invitation to register for you.

This email is fairly straightforward, but it’s critical that you get it right. Obviously, you want as many people as possible to register for your event.

Send an email that clearly explains why your subscribers should attend the event, the type of value they will receive, and all of the logistical details. Make sure to include all of the benefits, like “registration includes lunch,” “meet-and-greet after the main presentation,” or “all attendees receive a free gift bag.”

Your formal invitation email should have a single call to action: A link to your event registration landing page. This page should include everything your subscribers need to know to make their decision.

AdAge used a superb invitation email. It’s branded, bold, and full of high-value information. It tells you everything you need to know and links you to a page to get tickets.

Event Marketing Emails

6.  The Registration Confirmation Email

This is a fairly straightforward email. The point is to reassure your guests that their registration went through and provide them with a receipt of the transaction. Say something like, “Thank you for registering for the event. You’ll see a charge on your card soon. We look forward to seeing you!” Include their order total, number of tickets, special add-ons, etc.

This is also a good place to give your attendees some easy next steps. They probably won’t be ready to purchase hotel rooms or buy drink tickets, but they might be willing to like your Facebook page to stay updated or download your mobile app.

7.  The Key Information Email

This email includes anything your guests absolutely must know before they attend an event. It’s generally best to send this email right after they register for your event while it’s still fresh in their mind. What kind of key information might they need?

  • Where to sign up for mini-events, like presentations, lectures, or networking events.
  • Where to view or download important documents.
  • How to book a hotel room in the block of rooms you arranged.
  • Where and how to collect their passes, tickets, or wristbands.

It’s critical that this email cut through their inbox clutter, so use a subject line that grabs their attention and lets them know they’ll miss out if they don’t take action.

8.  The “Download the App” Reminder

If you use a custom event app, you’ll want at least one email dedicated to explaining why your guests (and potential guests) should download it. Tell them how the app integrates with your event and how it will enhance their experience.

App fatigue is a real problem these days, so be clear about the benefits. Explain how it will help them find information, interact with the presenters, and get social with other guests. Add bold calls to action to download the app for Android and Apple devices.

9.  The Contest/Giveaway Promotion

If you plan to host a contest or giveaway during your event, you'll want to send an email promoting it. Introduce the contest/giveaway, give them some details about how to enter and play, and - most importantly - tell them what they’ll win.

What should you give away? That depends on your audience and the type of event you're hosting. Give away something that matters to your type of guest. Avoid generic prizes like Amazon gift cards or iPads. They don’t connect with your guests.

This kind of email is a great way to boost the number of people who show up to the event. Let them enter the contest or giveaway before event day, but tell them you’ll award the prize at the event. This way they have to show up in order to collect.

10.  The Sponsorship Plug

If you have sponsors, it's smart to promote them as much as possible. In fact, you can sell shoutouts to your email list as part of your sponsorship packages.

These emails are tough, however, because your audience knows what you’re doing. You’ll want to find ways to make these seem like they aren’t advertising. For instance, you could encourage a sponsor to run a giveaway or contest, or ask them to give you a coupon code you can pass along to your guests.

Make sure to use your email marketing tools features to track how many people click links from your email to your sponsor’s website. You will need this information to show your sponsors the effectiveness of your email marketing. You can also use this data to sell sponsorship packages in the future.

11.  The “Know Before You Go” Email

Just before your event, it's helpful to send an email to your guests (just the people who registered) with some information about how to have a successful day. Offer some advice that will increase the chance they’ll show up, make them comfortable during the event, and help them get more value out of their experience.

Here are some things you might include in your “know before you go” email:

  • The expected weather conditions for the day.
  • Where to find local transportation and how to use it.
  • Which hotels in the area have the best prices and accommodations.
  • What they should wear (dress code, sunglasses, etc.).
  • Anything they should bring to be comfortable (sunscreen, walking shoes, etc.).

Start Email Marketing Today

Email marketing takes time. In some cases, it takes months to build strong relationships with your subscribers. So the sooner you start, the sooner you'll see the benefits. If you make sure to include these 11 types of event marketing emails, you will effectively nurture your subscribers, build hype, and sell more tickets.

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