How to Optimize Your Event Invitation Emails
Have you ever opened any event invitation emails that left you already wanting to be there?
Invitation emails can really set the stage for an upcoming event.
They’re great for generating buzz, anticipation, and excitement.
Event invitation emails are also affordable, but can sometimes be overlooked by the recipient…
…Or even worse, the host.
By properly targeting your prospective attendees, including all information they need to decide to attend and forging a personal connection, you can be sure you get the best possible response rate from your event email marketing efforts.
Let’s walk through the event email templates and some sample invitation emails.
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Invite Email Template Essentials
Your event email needs to contain everything guests need to know.
Not only to attend, but to understand why they should be attending in the first place.
Include the following details when you set up your invite email template:
Your event title, tagline, and other identifying information.
The reader should get a clear idea of what your event is and what it is for from this information.
An overview of what attendees can expect to learn, experience or do at your event.
What is your mission or purpose and why are you bringing this group of people together at this time?
The exact location of the venue and the event itself.
We recommend including a map or directions, and information about parking and other logistics.
If you’ve blocked out hotel rooms, secured a travel discount or made any other arrangements, this is the place to spell it out.
This is going to be the date and time of your event.
It helps to include the day of the week as well as the actual date.
Ideally, this will be far enough in advance that your prospective attendees have time to decide to attend and to make travel arrangements, too.
Why should people attend?
What benefits are you offering and what can attendees expect to gain from attending your event?
Take your time and spell out how they’ll benefit – will they network, have the opportunity to learn, get a chance to show off their own brand?
This is the place to detail this information.
|» Recommended Reading: The Official 2017 Guide to Email Marketing|
Optimization Opportunities for Invitation Emails
Optimizing your email invites makes it more likely that you’ll get a good turnout…
…and the people you invite are motivated to attend.
Using marketing automation to target your prospects, forging a personal connection and testing your invitation components can help you get the best possible response to your emails.
Make a Personal Connection
Ask yourself this question:
How does the event tie in with the people or group you are inviting and what makes it special?
Using images of people in your business event invitation emails can help make that personal connection and ensure that your invitation recipients can picture themselves there.
Real images work well if you have them.
If you are doing an annual event, you may be able to use images drawn from previous years as part of this year’s invitations.
Don’t overlook the power of video in your invitations.
Since this is a digital creation you have the opportunity to incorporate a variety of media into your invite.
And note the desktop version compared to the mobile responsive version of the email above.
From slideshows to actual videos or screen grabs, your invitation can make that personal connection when you go beyond just plain text.
Let the recipient know how easy it is to speak to a real person right from the information by including this option.
Not only will they be able to get the information they need to attend the event, you can build anticipation and answer any questions they may have right on the spot.
Target your Invitations for Maximum Response
When you properly target your invitations, you can be sure that the people you are sending to will be truly interested in your event.
More importantly, from a deliverability standpoint, your invites won’t be seen as spam.
You also ensure that you don’t accidentally overlook a group that could benefit from receiving your event invitation emails.
Targeting means examining your contacts, mailing lists, followers and more to determine which individuals and lists would be most likely to accept your invitation.
The better you target your list, the higher your invitation response and success rate will be.
So, who should receive your event invitation emails?
Consider the following groups when you start making your invite list:
- People who subscribe to your feed, list or newsletter
- Current customers
- Customers who purchased in the past, but may have moved on
- Prospects currently in your sales funnel
- Inbound leads
- ABM targets
- Customers who get product information or updates
- Engaged and loyal brand ambassadors
- Responsive and engaged social media followers
- Your personal network and connections that are directly linked to the industry or would have a natural interest in the event
Testing your Email Invitation
Why bother to test the results of your event invitation emails?
Use A/B testing to determine what resonates best with your target audience.
|» Recommended Reading: 35 A/B testing ideas to start increasing email campaign engagement.|
Testing responsiveness and success can give you key information you can use the next time you set up an event or promote an opportunity for your followers.
Test anything, from a countdown clock to time of day you send.
Over time, your engagement rates should improve.
So should registrations.
From your initial subject line to the images you use and your call to action, even small changes can impact your response rate.
Consider testing the following areas and remember that small tweaks matter:
- Subject Lines: This is the first thing the recipient will see and will help them decide if they should open the email at all.
- Call to Action (CTA): The CTA is an integral part of your invitation; you’ll need to ask your invitees to take one single action when they read your invitation. Do you want them to RSVP? Sign up for a paid conference? Click to learn more? Make sure you are letting them know exactly what step they should take next.
- Images: Simply swapping out images can make a difference in your response rate. Narrow your selections down to several images and then use A/B testing to see if one resonates better than the rest with a target group. You may find you need multiple images and that you need to adjust your invitation slightly for specific groups.
- Text: The actual content of the message and the look and feel of the text itself. You can use A/B testing to determine everything from the scale and font used to the actual language you’ve chosen to describe your event.
Integrate your Event Management Software with Email
To maximize the outcome of your events using email marketing, you have to remember one thing:
You need to integrate your email marketing software with your event management software.
(You can check out all of the event management apps we connect to in our App Connections store.)
Get the Email Cadence Just Right
Ideally, your event invitation emails will flow from one point to the next and allow the reader to swiftly discover everything they need to learn about your event.
By providing clear and succinct information that is easy to skim, you make it easy for the reader to fully understand the event and to take action.
In addition to your initial email, you’ll need to have a series of follow-ups to help build anticipation and ensure your participants have everything they need to attend.
|» Recommended Reading: Learn how to build the perfect drip marketing campaign and see drip email examples.|
Consider sending the following email invitation templates to ensure attendees and prospects have everything they need to fully enjoy and get the most from your event:
Build excitement about your event and provide everything a potential participant should know about attending.
Ideally, your attendees will take action and sign up for your event after receiving this piece.
Thanks for Registering
This email serves as not only a confirmation but a thank you; you’ll be letting the participants know what is coming next and continuing to build excitement.
This is also the time to introduce your event hashtag and any other information attendees might need in advance.
Time is Running Out
Some people just need to wait until the last minute; catch the stragglers with a “there’s still time” email and see your event numbers grow.
What to Expect
Details about the event itself, from your classes and programs to your speakers and opportunities.
You can use this to build excitement, promote specific portions of your event and even let attendees know what they’ll be treated to when they arrive.
Think of this as part thank you/part rehash of the highlights of the event.
This follow-up email is an ideal way to close things out for your event attendees.
You can ask for feedback, thank your guests for coming and give them a sneak peek of what is coming up next for your brand.
From relaying the right details to the actual components of your email and even the people receiving it, careful attention to the way you create and send your invitation can help increase your response rate and ensure you get the turnout you are hoping for.
Delivra makes it super simple for businesses to create event invite campaigns and invitation emails for any occasion. Why pay enterprise-level pricing for event email marketing bells and whistles you won’t use.