5 Takeaways from a Conversation for Event Experts

5 takeaways for PR professionals from, A Conversation with Event Experts - leveraging large scale events.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

PRCSydney’s PRC members assembled last Wednesday night at Woollahra’s Hotel Centennial to learn the tips and tricks some of Australia’s most revered event strategists apply to leverage optimum PR outcomes.

Chaired by Annalise Brown (PRC) Emily Weight, innovation strategist at Microsoft (formerly event director for IMG) drew on her years of fashion event experience as well as her current role working with the education sector for Microsoft, while Tim Freeland founder of Our Friends Electric and Dan Phelan head of events, promotions and partnerships at Foxtel both recounted tales from large scale music festivals when budgets were at a premium for event activations and audiences were seemingly more drawn in by brand activities. Among the two hours of robust chat we walked away with these 5 key takeaways.

1. Always think in ‘perennial’ content

Emily Weight said it beautifully when she asked: “What content can you capture at an event that's timeless?” Ensure you maximise content capture from all aspects of an event, including any VIPs who might be associated and have it to use all year around.  The benefit, it gives you greater ROI on the actual event budget.  

2. Sloppy targeting is wasted money

Consider, where your audience is and what they are doing, this is the advice when determining channels and choosing targeting techniques for an event audience.

Tim’s example straight from an ice cream client looking to reach audiences in and around Sydney’s  CBD  Martin Place location was aided through the dynamic data capabilities involved with conducting a Facebook Live and geo-targeting via the platform– a lot of people walked away happy with ice cream.

3. Use the tools at your disposal

The wonders of new tech and utlising tools to help with running events came thick and fast from Tim and Dan. These included:

Audience Republic - Tim touts founder for Audience Republic to be ‘the next tech billionaire’ and the concept which will make him uber wealthy, is a platform hugely popular among the millennial audiences. Marrying the task for online ticket purchase with the macro trend of betterment, if you've bought a ticket to an event and you share a link used by your friend to buy a ticket you get cash back, credits and shares.

Splash That - automate your event administration including capture of attendee information to registrations and sending out invites by using this platform.


Shazam - Dan Phelan, spoke of the inherent capabilities of this music discovery app in aiding event organisers during their on-the-ground activations. Specifically citing the benefit to event sponsors to reach the event audience with messaging and content.

4. Stop. Collaborate and listen

“Collaboration for us is key - we’re the biggest independent events agency in Australia, but we’re only 11 people,” said Tim of his company’s approach to doing business.

“The best piece of advice I could give to you is to collaborate.”
Dan echoed this advice by outlining his approach to lining up preferred suppliers ahead of time and ensuring he treats them well and pays them on time to foster and nurture the relationships for when he will need to call on them again.

5. Observe other brands to see how they’re doing things

Self explanatory but according to Tim top brands on his radar right now:

* General Electric?
* Herschel?
* Red Bull ?
* Adidas?

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