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How to Modernize Your Virtual and In-Person Event Invites

How to Modernize Your Virtual and In-Person Event Invites


Apr 19, 2023 Jenna Bunnell (Guest Contributor)

Trying to grab people’s attention via an invite is no easy feat; getting them to come to an event can be even trickier. Busy professionals get a plethora of emails landing in their inboxes daily, many of them invitations. If you want them to attend, you need to make sure yours stands out from the crowd. 

Of course, email invites aren’t the only way to garner interest in an event you’re hosting. You may wish to go old-school and send out paper invites instead. After all, when people have something to physically touch in their hands, they pay more attention to it, and it can be more memorable as a result.  

The most important thing is to make your invitation relevant and engaging to your recipients. This means turning to modern marketing techniques. So, whether you’re opting for a paper invite or a virtual one, how can you encourage recipients to find out more?  
 

What Is a Business Event Invite? 
If you’re hosting an industry event, it’s important that you give attendees plenty of notice and all the information they need.
That’s where a business event invite comes in. These can be especially useful for organizing industry conferences or networking events where you need to know the exact number of attendees to accommodate. 
Event invites may be sent to cold leads or contacts you already have. The important thing is to ensure that they’re both enticing and informative. 

Why Should You Send Out Invites? 
The reasons for sending out virtual and in-person event invites go beyond checking attendance. It’s a way to market your business, let people know you’re interested in them or their company, and make useful connections to add to your network.

You can use this as an opportunity to: 

  • Make New Contacts. Hosting events is a great way to broaden your network, and sending invites is how you pique interest. If you send these virtually, you can encourage your contacts to send them on to their contacts too, reaching even more potential leads. 
  • Make the Most of Existing Contacts. Usually, when you send out business invites, you’re contacting people you’ve already built connections with. This means you’re inviting people who’ve expressed an interest in your brand, encouraging additional buy-in from them. 
  • Get People Excited. Sending out invites gets people excited about your event. Whether it’s virtual or in-person, you can let potential attendees know about details such as VIP deals and goodie bag perks. If it’s a ticketed event, giving guests a glimpse of what’s to come will keep them interested.
  • Give Attendees an Idea of What’s to Come. On that note, an event invitation should give attendees an idea of what will take place at the event. 
  • Open Lines of Communication. Because you’ve taken the step of reaching out, it can also open lines of communication for you to check in with guests in the run-up. For instance, you could include contact details on the invite and host a video call for anyone with questions. 

  

Steps to Modernize Your Virtual and In-Person Invites
Here are some factors to consider when it comes to sending out an effective modern invite.

1. Include a Header Logo
It doesn’t matter whether you’re sending an e-invite or a paper one—it’s important to include a header logo. This means even if recipients miss the subject line or email sender, they’ll see the logo and know who the invite is from. 
Your logo is how your brand is represented, so ensure its included across your business invites. Consistently using it helps with brand recognition; people should see it and immediately think of you.  

You might want to incorporate a clickable logo as part of your virtual invites. This should take people to your website or social media platforms so they can learn more about your company and the event itself. 

2. Ensure a Strong Brand Identity
As well as including a logo, you need to reinforce your brand identity in other ways. Modern consumers see brands and associate them with certain expectations and prior experiences. If your brand image is positive, they’re more likely to attend because it’s your company and they trust you to deliver. 
A strong brand identity can help you create a feeling of community too. People like to be part of something, so use your brand identity to make them feel included. Be sure to let them know the invite has been sent out to them especially because you’d appreciate their presence. 
Remember to think about colors, fonts, and images when designing your invites. You want your branding to be consistent across the board. This will reinforce the sense that the event is part of something bigger, as people will also have seen your branding online and in-store and will associate it with your (hopefully) forward-thinking values and initiatives and the community you’ve created.  

3.
Include an Attention-Grabbing Subject Line
If you’re sending an e-invitation, bear in mind that some business professionals will receive hundreds of emails a week. Ergo, your subject line needs to encourage people to click, so be creative when thinking of the perfect phrase to get their attention.  

This should include the most exciting and interesting aspects of your event to boost your chances of them opening the email. For example, if you’re telling people about a new product, you could start with “Event: Discover the best VoIP for home in Canada”. Hopefully, this will encourage them to find out more about how this could be beneficial. 
You can then share any other important info in the body of the email, such as the date, location, time, etc. 

4. Include Valuable Information in the First Sentence 
The first sentence can make or break whether someone will read on and want to know more. Invites should include details about the event, who will be there, and where it will take place.
Reinforce to prospective attendees how exciting the event will be and how much they’ll miss out if they don’t come. If you’re hosting a session on forecasting in Excel with Inventory Planner and offering free templates for attendees, then people need to know.  

Don’t forget to include links to further information, so this is easily found by anyone whose interest has been peaked. Remember, you want to strike while the iron is hot!

5. Rich Media 
Rich media, such as photos and videos, can help bring your invites to life. You could even have event details within a video to really modernize your virtual invites. These types of media can help you paint a more fully formed picture of what’s to come at the event, which may persuade people to RSVP.  
Keep any video content short and sweet, and always try to include important information as early on as possible so people don’t accidentally skip it. You can use VoIP texting to follow up with a more detailed reminder later if you want your invites to stay snappy. 

What To Write In Your Business Invites 
So, now you know how to present your business invites, what should you include to boost engagement ahead of the big event? Let’s take a look.

  • Keep It Short. Invitations for business events should be concise so the reader can get straight to the point. Keep sentences short and use bullet points where necessary to allow the reader to scan the invite. If you include long-winded information, they may lose interest and decide your event isn’t for them. 
  • Focus On Your Wants and Needs. What is the main goal of your event? Is it to gain more contacts, raise awareness of your free digital business card, or network with people in your industry? Whatever your aim, keep this in mind when you’re drafting the copy for your invite. If your goal is to raise awareness of your brand, consider including a link to your free digital business card in the invite. This can help potential attendees learn more about your business and what you have to offer.
  • Sell Related Items. You could sell digital downloads related to the event. For example, you could offer a free e-book or white paper related to the theme of the event, or sell tickets to a virtual workshop or training session. By offering additional value to potential attendees, you can make your event even more appealing and increase the chances of people attending. Consider adding information about any digital downloads or add-ons to your invites to make sure attendees are aware of the additional benefits they can receive.
  • Provide Details. Another thing to tick off your hybrid event planning checklist is providing details about the event. Although you want to keep the invite short, it’s important people have the key information they need. This includes dates, times, locations, transport, and a ticket link if it’s a ticketed event. To ensure the security of our virtual event invites, we use digital signatures to verify the authenticity of the sender and protect against unauthorized access.
  • Tell Attendees What’s in Store. Let your potential attendees know what they’ll be getting if they buy a ticket to your event. If it’s a networking exercise, for example, remind them how great it will be to meet other professionals in their field. 

The Takeaway 
Creating modern and effective invites for in-person or virtual events can be tricky, but you won’t go far wrong if you keep these essential principles in mind. What are you waiting for? Get to work and ensure your event is a success today! 

Click to explore how to Up Your Event Marketing Game with Strategic Personalized Event Invites 

About the Author 
Jenna Bunnell is the Senior Manager for Content Marketing at Dialpad, an AI-incorporated cloud-hosted unified communications system that provides valuable call details for business owners and sales representatives. She is driven and passionate about communicating a brand’s design sensibility and visualizing how content can be presented in creative and comprehensive ways. Here is her LinkedIn. 


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