Planning Outdoor Marketing Events

Outdoor events are similar to other marketing events in many ways.  The basic guidelines found in the "planning and preparation" tip all apply to outdoor and indoor events.  Remember to do some initial research on attendance and demographic records to make sure the outdoor event is worth your investment.  The following information will help you to plan your next outdoor event.


Outdoor advertising allows you to reach people in a casual setting, in the presence of other fun activities.  The most significant benefit of investing in outdoor events is that people cannot "turn off," "fast forward," or easily ignore your advertisements like they can with television, radio, and print.  This gives you far more control over where and how your advertisements are seen or interpreted.  There are numerous types of outdoor marketing events including:  Sporting events (baseball, golf, football, tennis, soccer etc.), barbeques, concerts, outdoor trade shows, auto/RV/boat shows, grand openings, public fairs, festivals (4th of July, music, art), and carnivals.


When you are in the great outdoors, you are a slave to the weather.  Don't participate in an outdoor event in Arizona during July and don't participate in an outdoor event in North Dakota during January.  If the temperature is not pleasant, no one will show up!  Also, make sure that all of your unsheltered marketing tools (graphics) are made from materials that can withstand moderate rain, wind and heat.  For any outdoor event, you should have a backup plan in case of inclement weather.  Have a couple of tents set up, or at least ready to be set up if bad weather arises.


There are a few important things to remember when participating in an outdoor event, especially when you are the primary sponsor.  You should first sketch out the area beforehand, to determine the best set up and to plot traffic flow.  Then you need to figure out the exact time that the sun will set that day to decide if you need lighting for your displays, graphics, and meeting areas.  Always try to place your graphics facing the sun (it will move, but place graphics with respect to where the sun will be the majority of the time).  Otherwise, the sun will glare from behind your graphics, making it difficult to see them clearly.  You should also check the availability of electricity and bathrooms to determine if you need to rent generators or portable toilets.


Always provide water when you are sponsoring warm weather events.  If people are fainting because there is no water available, it will reflect poorly on your company.  Also, consider ways to prevent the presence of mosquitoes and other pesky bugs if it happens to be that time of year.  You can spray the area with insecticide or simply provide insect repellant candles, bug zappers, etc.  You should provide ample seating and shade for those who cannot withstand heat and sunshine for extended periods of time.  If you are providing food at the event, make sure to keep the hot items hot and the cold items cold.  Spoiled food will ruin everyone's experience and make your company look irresponsible.


When it comes to actually advertising your organization at an outdoor event, the options are endless.