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What IS Event Marketing?

What is event marketing?

When someone mentions event marketing it is likely that one of two ideas comes to mind. But what is event marketing? And which of these terms is right?

I know I have fallen foul of confusing what it is most directly defined by the term myself. It is a common mistake, and arguably, not even a mistake at all. The different definitions to the term are used interchangeably, and even dictionaries provide two definitions to the term, “event marketing”.

I’m going to try and unpack both of the definitions in this post, with my main focus on the ‘correct’ use of the term. I’ll also give you a quick low-down on what each of them can bring to your business.

 What is event marketing?

What is Event Marketing?

Event marketing is the use of in-person interactions to promote a brand, service, or product. In essence, it is the use of events for marketing purposes.

However, these event’s don’t always have to be hosted by the promoters. Nor do they necessarily have to be in-person. The scope of ‘event marketing’ is vast, especially in today’s digital world.

Event marketing vs event marketingEvent Marketing VS Event Marketing

Returning to the dual images conjured by the phrase, “event marketing”, what is the difference in event marketing and “event marketing”?

Event marketing, as mentioned above, is the use of events for marketing purposes. However, the phrase may also conjure thoughts of marketing for events.

These two ideas are not the same. However, the irony here is that event marketing can be used in marketing for events.

Marketing for events is simply the process of promoting an event you are holding. This can be done through digital channels such as email or SMS, traditional methods such as print adverts and flyering, or through event marketing.

But for now, let’s return to discussing event marketing: the use of events to promote something.

Ways of event marketing in person

Ways of Event Marketing in Person

You have probably been involved in event marketing in some way. For example, I have often come across pop-up stands in city centres handing out free samples of a new product. Another example would be a launch event hosted by a company to exhibit their new brand or product to an audience.

Both of these examples are in-person methods of building awareness and relationships with whatever is being promoted. It is also a great way to spark word-of-mouth and a lasting interpersonal promotion of your brand. Not to mention, depending on the event, people can post and share their thoughts and the event itself on social media, furthering your audience and promotional reach.

Modern event marketing

Modern Event Marketing

In the digital age, methods of event marketing have rapidly expanded. From live videos on social media, to educational – but promotional – webinars, an array of marketing tools has emerged.

Live-streamed events and other forms of digital media have since proven to be just as impactful as in-person events. They also often provide repurposable content, with sections of Q and A sessions from streams, or tips from webinars easily cut from the source and posted elsewhere.

Much like the effect of word-of-mouth spread of information of in-person events, digital events can be shared far beyond your initial audience with a simple click. Impressed viewers will share your post, and with before long, your event can build momentum and spread like wildfire.

Event marketing doesn't mean you always need to host

Event Marketing Needn’t Always be Hosting

Although it may play a significant proportion of event marketing, hosting events needn’t be the only method. In fact, attending events can also count. One of the most common examples would be attending exhibitions and expos and promoting your brand in person while other companies do the same. You don’t always have to be hosting the event!

Regardless of the ‘correct’ use, both uses of the term “event marketing” is right. In a lot of cases, you will find both definitions being used interchangeably. Furthermore, whether hosting events for marketing, or marketing for events, the process shares a lot of common ground. In either situation, you will be planning and hosting an event!


To keep on track with your event planning, try using our free event planning checklist. Designed to help you prioritise and organise, it will make planning your event marketing – or marketing an event – a breeze.



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