In this age of information and web-focused promotion, most event apps are promoted strictly online through social media sites like, Twitter and Facebook, or through web blogs, and corporate websites. Online event app promotion has a very large reach and should not be ignored or dismissed but often the conversion rates are quite low since it requires a lot of time and a consistent effort to produce results.
Good old-fashioned offline promotional techniques that have been selling things since the birth of advertising, if properly used, can still create results in the current tech age. While these techniques may cost a little more than web based efforts they give hard results and provide a base on which to build an app community. These methods are particularly useful for apps that are targeting a specific areas or niches industries.
Find out where the local community meets the most and host a low-key promotional event there. Perhaps it’s a park, local bar, restaurant or coffee shop; wherever it may be make sure to add a little something extra for anyone who downloads the app while at the event – like a free drink or t-shirt. This could be a hook for new users to talk about and share the app with their friends.
Get the Press Involved
Create a press release about the event app and send it out to local newspapers and industry publications. Write a sponsored article about your industry and event and incorporate your app into the message. Remember to promote the idea the event is part of, not the app itself. The big story is not going to be the app – but the app can get media coverage if it is connected to a larger idea or story that is interesting from a news perspective.
Not only do millions of U.S. consumers scan QR codes every day; that number also continues to skyrocket. Recent research from Pitney Bowes suggests that there are already millions of QR code users in the US, and over 50% of smartphone users have scanned a QR code. Creating a custom QR code is fairly easy and free, but make sure to create a simple web landing page so people can easily learn about and download the event app without a hitch. Remember, QR codes are a hugely powerful tool to link online and offline efforts, but only when used correctly.
Creating eye-catching stickers will draw the attention of potential users; use them in places that target audience members frequent the most. Don’t forget to incorporate the QR Codes when designing the sticker – make it as easy as possible for people to download the event app no matter where they are.
T-shirts and Flyers
One page flyers can get lots of downloads but be careful not to turn them into sales promos – write some tips about the app and present them in a useful way. Flyers are easy to print and they’re relatively inexpensive. They are a great way of promoting an event app when targeting areas like shopping complexes, office complexes, niche shops, and other promotional events. Is there a clearer way to make a statement without “selling” than a with T-shirt? Use the event app logo combined with a catchy call to action that people will notice and remember. Don’t forget to hand out a couple of T-shirts with those flyers. Who doesn’t love a free tee!
Nothing shouts “our app just launched” more than a good old party. Invite key industry influencers as well as, current contacts, top customers, media, and brand ambassadors. Do some additional research and invite industry or topic related bloggers and local tech celebrities that have shown an interest in the industry. Encourage attendees to share photos of the launch party across social media during the event and make sure to get testimonials from users on video at the event that can be used for further promotion.
The world is now becoming smaller as the connections between offline and online become larger and more common. A combined offline and online effort can get more downloads than either of them alone. Just like with any other promotion technique, make sure to test out different combinations of methods to see which are most effective.