How have you attracted new audiences to your event?

I’m writing a blog on how to grow your event by attracting new audiences and would very much like to hear from anyone who has done this.

Have you targeted secondary audiences outside the original brief such as in different sectors, professions or special interest groups? How did you go about this? Did you produce specific promotions? Did you introduce new event content to appeal to those secondary audiences? What did you find most effective?

Please comment below if you have any experience of this or private message me if you prefer. Any help would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance, Melissa

When I was living and working in Poland, I helped promote events for foreigners living there. It was a rather easy sell, as there weren’t too many at the time in my part of the country (I wasn’t in Warsaw), and the network was targeted enough that word spread quickly without the use of the internet. These events happened usually every two weeks, and it didn’t take too long for it to get a little boring, as the same folks usually showed up (and same activities took place).

A large number of the foreigners were English teachers, and in conversation with them I learned that their students were studying so they could work in the UK. An idea clicked in my head, and I said that we could open up our meetups to Polish people who are looking to travel/work abroad, as all of us regulars had done, thus offering a shared experience and something “educational” from the event.

It’s just one example, but I think that the strengths within a group can be leveraged to attract new audiences by finding how to give something more than just the event in question.

Hope that helps!

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Thanks Sachin. Love that you flipped the event on its head effectively. So did the Polish people just come due to word of mouth or did you actively promote it?

It was a little bit of both. We asked the teachers to mention the event in their classes, and a lot of us had Polish friends (some of whom were interested in coming) who spread the word to their friends and colleagues. We made sure to keep the pitch focused on the event being a rare chance to talk to people from other countries in a relaxed setting. A few of the foreigners spoke a little Polish, so we made sure to mention that, as well.

The email flyer included the flags of all countries represented. A few of us being 2nd generation or mixed race may have unintentionally bumped up the number of flags.

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Great stuff! Did you do anything specific at the events to get people chatting/integrating?

Interesting that you ask…we had a bunch of activities planned (icebreakers, small competitions), but ended up using absolutely none of them. It was really nice to see that the attendees were comfortable enough with each other – and confident with themselves – to network organically.

It was a first-of-its-kind event, so maybe that little bit of buzz helped move things along very well.

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