beautydirectory.com.au invited me to write a guest blog for them, on tips and tricks for beauty events.
The beauty event is like an island within the sea of all other media
events. Like a celebrity beauty regimen, it has its own strict rules and
requirements and comparative to other events, has a relatively small
and exclusive guest list. There are no more than a max of 50 core beauty
media and bloggers in Sydney. So how do you throw an event that stands
out from the crowd and equates into digital buzz as well as old-school
Given that I run an event calendar for a living, I
confess – sometimes I wonder whether all of them are really necessary?
There are so many fantastic events, and a lot of not-so-great ones. The
bottom line is they can be expensive, so there are times when other
marketing strategies would be just as effective for a fraction of the
price. One beauty editor stated that six out of 10 beauty events she
attended were a “waste of time”. She stated that often a boardroom
presentation or simply a media send out would be just as effective. Food
People often ask me whether I ever get sick of going to so many events, and my response is always – “no…not yet!”
I even enjoy the really atrocious events because I’m constantly amazed
how brands can spend so much money and achieve such a dismal result. I
learn SO much from every single one. What puzzles me is they often get
the BASICS so wrong…
-You’ll never get as many people as you think you will.
is Sydney – there are A LOT of parties on, all the time (don’t even
start me on November). Why go to all the expense if you don’t invite
enough people and there are tumbleweeds in the room? The golden formula
is double it and add some more. For the bigger fragrance events, if you
want 300 people in the room you need 380 RSVPs which means you need to
invite up to 700 people. No-one believes this scary fact until they’re
standing at the door with a clipboard and wondering where the hell
-If you’re having a sit-down lunch, it can halve RAPIDLY
events tend to be small, so can look empty very easily. If you want 16
people seated at the table, take a minimum of 22 RSVPs. Yes, at least 6
will drop out the morning of. Like flies. People get stuck at work and
can’t leave. I bet you won’t ever have to put an extra chair in…
-Comfort is king
mother’s BEST event advice ever - no-one will care about the squillions
you’ve spent on the bells and whistles if they can’t do three simple
things: get a drink, eat some food, and go to the loo without waiting in
a queue for half an hour. If people have to wait to get a drink, they
moan. If people can’t get anything to eat, they leave. You get the
Work out whether you should really
be doing an event. Can you be innovative and stand out in a cluttered
market? My worst nightmare is the ‘drink-canapé-speech-goodie bag’ type
of event. YAWN. Where’s your WOW factor? Your reveal? Your moment? If
you can’t incorporate one, don’t do it.
cost money, creativity doesn’t have to. I love events that have the
guests interacting in some way – if they’re having fun, they drop their
guard and it becomes instantly memorable. It can be as simple as
including a photo booth (it’s a perennial crowd-pleaser and Polite in
Public do it best.)
If you want your guests
to spread your message across social media, give them lots of things to
take pictures of. LOTS! At our parties we always have props that guests
can ‘play’ with - jump into, jump on... anything they can take a pic of
themselves doing, they will share like crazy. If the props are
client-related, it’s a winner.
-Communicate your hashtag
have your event hashtag and client social media handles on clear
display, such as on the menu, place-cards or screens. At parties we are
expected to hashtag but then you’re running around trying to find out
what it is. At Social Diary Halloween we put them EVERYWHERE, including
the back of the bar staff’s t-shirts and even the loos!
budget allows, it’s ALWAYS appreciated for beauty events. A lot of
journos have to pay for their own cabs to be reimbursed way down the
track, and bloggers have no one to reimburse them. Some will even avoid
going to events where they know it’s impossible to get a cab home, so
even if you can’t afford to pay for them, state that a fleet of taxis
has been ordered for departure.
-Start too early.
Breakfasts at 7:30am can be an issue for mums and can eat into personal time such as the gym - 8:30am/9am starts are better.
-Be too far away.
Avoid any venue more than 15 minutes away from the CBD, and if it HAS to be further, transport is mandatory.
-Make them over-mingle.
eds attend up to 10 events a week. They love and see each other ALL the
time, but as one said “there’s a limit to how many times you can ask
someone about their weekend”.
They are a punctual lot, so keep the arrival time to 10 mins.
-Drag on too long.
are as time-poor as ever, with magazine staffers doing the job of three
pre-2008 media. Avoid going longer than 90 minutes.
-Death by Powerpoint
an idea is to ask yourself one simple question whilst planning: "Will
our event be up for a beautydirectory Star Award?" If not…go back to the