//Peter Whitehead /August 8 / 2014
How to use events to earn revenue and build your brand
A growing number of media companies are using events as a way of diversifying revenues and building their brand, and in many cases it’s proving to be a good decision.
“Events are a proven way for media companies to diversify revenue that, if done right, are significantly harder to disrupt than other revenue models,” writes Kevin Loker of the American Press Institute, which has produced a detailed study of the do’s and don’ts of media events hosting. “They deepen connections with audiences and sponsors. They reinforce multiple values of a publishing brand. And they can grow.”
Last year, the non-profit Texas Tribune in the US generated 20% of its revenues from running events, with several others earning more than 10% from conferences, seminars and community events.
Events fall broadly into two categories: journalism events, such as debates, panels and other news-making opportunities; and community events — exhibitions, contests and non-journalism functions. Both can be closely aligned with brand positioning, as well as being potential money-making activities.
The study, which focused on small- and medium-sized publications, is part of APIAPI (Application Programming Interface)An API is a set of commands, the language that programmers or developers use…//read more ’s Strategy Studies, examinations of how publishers can build new revenue models.
API identified these key lessons:
- Use assets you already have: Build on your strengths of organising information, accessing thought-leaders and as a community platform.
- Leverage existing audiences and grow new ones: Use these principles to define event types and subjects.
- Identify and hold off competition: Event-hosting can help reinforce your brand position.
- Take creative approaches: Identify new partners and forge new relationships.
- Weigh the value of different pricing strategies: Event sponsorships are usually more lucrative than audience fees.
- Go all-in with promotions: Launch events wholeheartedly – promotion is vital.
API has created a simple worksheet to help you work out what events’ strategy would work for your business.
Article by Peter Whitehead