What is an Event Promoter?
An event promoter creates a "buzz" about clients’ events with the purpose of getting people to attend them. The event could be a concert, the opening of a new business, a career fair, a sports competition or many other possibilities. Talented event promoters are skilled in advertising and public relations strategies. Above all, an effective event promoter has to have the ability to come up with creative project ideas that he or she can get completed through good working relationships with other people.
Event promoters must work with many different people in all parts of an event promotion project. For example, the creative side of the promotion’s project is likely to require a graphic designer and a copywriter to create advertising materials that could include coupons, posters or brochures as well as newspaper, radio, television or magazine ads. Keeping in close contact with people handling the accounting is important for an event promoter as he or she must always keep any creative ideas in line with a set budget. This is an important part of the event promoter's job because companies that pay event promoters to creatively promote their events do so with a prearranged budget. If promoters go over that budget, it costs them extra money which decreases their profit from the project.
With budget constraints in mind, it's easy to see why many promotions for events include offering inexpensive items such as free hot dogs rather than free steak for a grand opening of a new store. If the event is the opening of a steakhouse, however, then promoters may create a contest with prizes such as a steak dinner for two or four people since offering free steak to many people would be too expensive. Balloons and face painting are common, inexpensive ways of attracting attention for an event such as a community festival. If the event to be promoted is an upcoming concert, then radio and print ads designed to grab the interest and attention of the target audience may be used.
An event promoter is usually very much a contact person. His or her name may appear on press releases as the person to contact for more information on an event. Event promoters often arrange publicity with media such as television and radio stations. Since the event promotion business is so competitive, an event promoter must have excellent people skills and build relationships with clients. They may work for a public relations firm, in an advertising agency that specializes in promotions or as independent contractors on a project basis.
@seag47 – It's smart that you offered face painting at such a low price. Event promoters for craft festivals often suggest doing things that appeal to children at a price low enough to motivate the parents to bring them. Some event promoters even ask vendors to do things for free in order to bring in potential customers.
I made jewelry and sold it at an arts and crafts festival, and the event promoter got everyone in on contributing to make the event a success. We all agreed to offer free classes at a certain time of day to the public during the event, and many people came out just to see how we made what we sold.
Several of the people who sat in on my class bought some of my jewelry. I don't know whether they wanted to use it as a template to make their own or if they just wanted to wear it, but either way, the event was a success.
Using an event promoter can really help drum up business. My uncle hired one to help him create a stir around the opening of his restaurant, and so many people showed up that they had to wait outside on the porch for a table.
The event promoter helped my uncle figure out how much and what type of free food he could offer and still come out under budget. She suggested that he offer some of what he considered to be his best menu items as door prizes, and she asked that he offer some of them to all guests at half price, just for the event.
The public got hooked on his food, all because they got the chance to try it either for free or at a deep discount. That kept them coming back week after week and paying full price.
I am a graphic designer, and I had to work with an event promoter once. She was extremely particular about the way she wanted the posters and brochures to look, and even the design that I thought was excellent didn't satisfy her.
We went back and forth several times, and after about five revisions to the promotional materials, I finally managed to please her. I understand that her reputation was on the line, so she had to be hard on me. However, it is really difficult to do good work when someone is finding fault with everything you do.
Normally, I don't have to work with event promoters. I generally just work with sales reps. If an event promoter comes into our agency, I usually try to set him or her up with one of the other designers.
Sometimes, it pays to be your own event promoter. I have taken part in several arts and crafts shows, and each time, I have made up flyers in the weeks before the event to advertise the art in my booth and passed them out around town.
I also mentioned on the flyers that I would be doing face painting for $1. What's crazy is that I ended up making more money off of the face painting than off of my artwork. So many kids showed up to my booth for this that they had to wait in line.
Apparently, I was the only one doing face painting at the event. I made enough to cover the cost of renting the space and to buy myself some lunch, which is more than most of the vendors could say.
Like the article said, I can see why an event promote would need good people skills. First of all, you have to get jobs promoting events, and if you aren't personable, no one is going to hire you.
Second of all, you need to act as a contact to the general public and get people to want to go to your events. I know a lot of music event promoters in my city have large social network and people go to events just because of them. If those promoters didn't have such great people skills, they wouldn't have such a following.
@JaneAir - Yes, it is usually a good idea to stay on the good side of someone who can get you a job. I imagine there are probably some graphic designers and copywriters in your city that also try to make nice with the club promoters.
As the article said, club promoting isn't the only thing on an event promoter job description. It sounds like some of them definitely promote other events too. I imagine you probably have to have a slightly different skill set to promote a club night and a store grand opening though.
In my city there are a few club promoters that are very visible. You will always see them at the events they promote, so it seems like they do more than just taking care of stuff prior to the event.
Also, my boyfriend is a DJ, and he makes it a point to stay on the good side of the more popular club promoters in our area. The promoters actually take care of hiring the DJ for certain club nights, so my boyfriend has gotten work from some of these promoters before.
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