How to Prepare to Relaunch Your Meetings Campaigns: Including Tips to Evaluate If Your Message Is Right

By Mya Surrency Digital Edge Marketing

It’s incredibly odd to be a destination organization leader or agency and not have a marketing campaign running or trade shows to attend or even more odd to have hotels closed.  These are definitely challenging times and they are testing all of us to hang in there, take a moment to evaluate what we can do right now and provide an opportunity for us to evaluate what is the best message we can share after COVID-19 eases and things begin to resume to our new normal.

While we are on this break from running meetings marketing campaigns, we can take a step back and evaluate our messaging, calls to action and imagery.  Fortunately, during the crisis, Digital Edge has spent much of this time working on a research project with a client hearing directly from meeting planners their insights and feedback on multiple marketing campaigns that we are using to shape our launch strategy for after the crisis.

While you may not have the resources at this time to conduct research, you could utilize this time to have your sales team reach out to planners for direct feedback and input on your campaigns.  Now is definitely the time to ask planners for their insights and have open conversations.  For one, we should all be listening as much as we can before we begin shaping our relaunch plans and it seems from our current research project that meeting planners are appreciating the distraction of talking about a destination's marketing vs. their current situation.

To make this process run smoothly, here are some tips to help your team get the conversations started.

Tips to Ask Planners To See if Your Messaging is Right:

  1. Does the tag line match our destination?
  2. Does the ad make you want to stop and read it/engage?
  3. What is the most appealing part of the ad?
  4. What is the least appealing?
  5. Would this ad cause you to take action?  If not, what would?
  6. What types of imagery do you like to see?

Have your team dissect your meetings campaign to evaluate:

  1. Are you using captivating imagery?  Keep in mind that event planners see city shots and destination shots over and over.  How will yours stand out?
  2. Are you utilizing a variety of mediums to communicate to planners?  Ensure your meetings campaign includes multiple channels to reach & engage planners.
  3. Evaluate your email templates to see if they have good formatting and calls to action.  Take the time to test your templates for usability and mobile.
  4. Evaluate your email marketing database with your CRM database to ensure it is up to date.  Are the planners from the most recent shows in your marketing database?  Do you have the newsletter sign up form on your site connected to your marketing database?
  5. Is your LinkedIn corporate page up to date & utilizing captivating imagery?  Is the tagline up to date and the copy focused on your main meetings messaging?
  6. Is your sales team’s profile up to date and positioning each member as the destination sales expert for planners?  Ensure your team is using their profiles for destination sales and not using them as a resume per se.  This will help develop their persona as the destination experts.
  7. Does your brand campaign and meetings website share the same look, feel, message and branding?  Oftentimes we find there is a disconnect between the campaign and the website.
  8. Is your meetings package well defined and clearly communicated on your meetings website and in your content?  Many times the marketing doesn’t clearly communicate the package for planners in terms of size, location, number of hotel rooms within walking distance to the center, restaurants, unique venues and flights.
  9. Does your brand campaign and imagery seem relevant after COVID-19?  Will it be sensitive to the times we are in? Is the message relevant?  Are the images relevant?  Is your campaign sensitive to these new times we are in?

We hope these tips and resources are of value to you and your team during these times.  While we are not operating in a business as usual environment, hopefully, we can all find the silver linings to help ensure our programs and marketing after COVID-19 are the absolute best they can be to help our communities and partners regain business and drive demand for your destination.

About the Author

Mya Surrency headshot
Mya Surrency
Co-Founder
Digital Edge Marketing
Digital Edge is an agency focused on working with CVBs with a specialty in meetings marketing. Mya utilizes her 10+ years of CVB experience create cutting edge meetings marketing techniques from her work with San Francisco Travel, Atlanta Convention & Visitors Bureau and Visit Park City (among others). Mya has led the agency to be honored as Inc. Magazine’s 5000 Fastest Growing Companies in America in 2019 and made the Jacksonville Business Journal’s list of 50 Fastest Growing Companies three years in a row.