When thinking about content marketing, a local network meeting or in-person type even doesn’t jump out of most people’s top ten things to do. However hosting a networking event is a great way to create some buzz about your business and it allows you to create some awesome content to boot. In fact according to Content Marketing Institute, content marketers prefer in-person events and call it one of their most effective content marketing tactics.
Hosting a networking event or in-person events should not replace any of your online events or other content marketing tactics such as blog posts, article marketing, social media marketing, newsletters or anything else. Hosting networking events are just another marketing tactic that is good to use for content marketing.
When they say “build it and they will come” they didn’t mean a website, we all know that isn’t true and for those that still labor under the illusion that it’s true, sorry BUT GET REAL. They meant relationships. When you build strong relationships with people, exciting things start happening. Taking online relationships to in-person offline relationships is the next step to take your business to a higher level through solidifying relationships in a new way.
By hosting a local networking event you can use it as a catalyst for new compelling content. Record the event; blog about the event; transcribe the event. Write a book about what you learned at the event. Challenge others to write, tweet, and talk about the event, both online and in person. The more buzz there is about the event – before, during and after – the better.
Most chambers of commerce that arrange and host networking events fail to create content marketing material, simply because they don’t know how, haven’t thought about it, etc. If you want your events well attended, promote them using content marketing, create a buzz and your events will always be full.
Hardly anything can make your audience more aware of you than hosting and going to in-networking events. By being willing to put yourself out there you become more than an avatar on a blog or social media site. You become a real, live person who is trustworthy, which makes your brand all the more special. People like to do business with people, so simply be getting involved your brand increases and you will get business.
Hosting, speaking and attending networking events can boost your reputation as a thought leader and expert in your niche. The thought process goes like this: “If the people who went to the live event wanted to hear the person badly enough to pay for travel and the event, then this person must be special.” So, even among those who can’t go to live events, your reputation will be improved.
Offline events give you an even better medium to meet and hobnob with the movers and shakers within your industry and niche. Nothing is quite like shaking the hand of a blogger you’ve followed the last ten years, or meeting the person who helped you get started in your niche. What’s more, talking to someone face to face helps develop trust, and if you want to partner up with people you trust, nothing is quite like meeting them face to face first.
It’s clear that offline events offer additional content for your content marketing needs if you realize that you can repurpose each event. It’s another tactic in your marketing arsenal that you can use to increase the useful content that you already put on your online real estate. What’s more, it’s a tactic that is getting great results.