What Beyoncé and Taylor Swift Can Teach Us About Scaling Events—Plus, How To Use AI To Work Smarter

January 8, 2024
Lindsay McGuire
Lindsay McGuire
Associate Director of Content and Campaigns at Goldcast

Maximize Your Marketing ROI

Join 10,000 other marketers already getting the best tips on running engaging events that boost pipeline and create raving fans.

This past holiday season brought us a lot of gifts—and one of the best ones may have been an eye-opening chat about scaling marketing programs and AI during a recent episode of Event Marketers Live. Karen Hartline, Executive Producer, Live Content at Zillow and Danielle Glenn, Global Webinar Program Manager at Software AG shared what seemed like an endless amount of tips on how to get the most out of your event programming in 2024.

They even talked about some lessons being served up in real time by two of the top-selling women artists in the world, aka Beyoncé and Taylor Swift!

But first, let's talk about our experts. Danielle started her career in hospitality before moving to the corporate events side and working on every type of event under the sun, from fun marathons to food trade shows to outdoor festivals. These days, her focus is on virtual events and webinars.

Karen, on the other hand, has worked in events for almost two decades. She began in the nonprofit world and owned her own agency; she also did some PR work with events and sponsorships, and then decided to go in-house at Zillow to present the company story and build up audience engagement.

Read on to learn:

  • How can marketers scale events while maintaining quality and attracting a more diverse audience?
  • Use AI for workback plans, intro scripts, and more
  • Try Content Lab for AI-based help with content repurposing

Before we dive in, if you want to catch up with the full replay of this lively chat, you can watch it here.

Event Marketers Live with Karen Hartline and Danielle Glenn

ALSO - are you part of our Event Marketers Club yet? We've seen a big uptick in IRL meetings across the globe. If rubbing elbows with other industry folks sounds right up your alley, join here!

How can marketers scale events while maintaining quality and attracting a more diverse audience?

If you're already enjoying a pretty successful event roster (which, kudos to you!), you might be thinking about how to scale your events program to reach and engage a more global audience.

Pre-record some of your content

Karen recommends pre-recording some of the content that you might present on stage at an in-person event and then sending it out before the event. That'll get your audience excited about what's coming, come Event Day, and it'll also hopefully nudge your attendance rate a bit higher and get butts in seats!

Pre-recording some of your presentation also frees up some of that face-to-face time you have with attendees and gives you more time back you can use for interactive Q&A sessions or networking opportunities, which we all know that audiences want more of these days.

Allow VIP attendees to bring others

Another idea to scale events without compromising the integrity of the experience is to give your VIP attendees free tickets to paid events and allow them to give those away to someone who can contribute or add to the event. This makes your most loyal audience members feel appreciated and helps expand your reach—a win-win!

Turn your audience into Swifties…

Karen also urges marketers to create an attendee journey, all the way through.

"Take a page from Miss Taylor Swift, Times' Person of the Year. I love how she does her Easter eggs and her community digs for those. I would love to see an event do Easter eggs throughout the year until you get to your flagship event." - Karen Hartline, Executive Producer, Live Content, Zillow

Quote from Karen Hartline about adding Easter eggs into events

To create a holistic journey for attendees, you need to think about all the different possible journeys that exist and culminate with signing up for your event. Is this person a first-timer and brand new to your brand? Are they a repeat attendee you've seen time and again in the crowd? Are they a prospect you want to bring in? Are they only coming because of a relationship they have with someone else in the audience?

Different people have different needs, and by thinking through what each person's needs might be, you can be sure your marketing speaks to everyone. One size rarely fits all, as easy as that would be for us as marketers!

…and follow Beyoncé's lead, too!

We talk all the time about the power of content repurposing, and Beyoncé took it to another level when she turned her groundbreaking Renaissance tour footage into a three-hour movie that people can go see in theaters!

"You have all this amazing stuff from your speakers and all of the different events you run. Why not continue to use that throughout the year?" - Belinda Joseph, Head of Events & Community, Goldcast

How to use event content throughout an entire year - Belinda Joseph Goldcast

Follow in Mrs. Knowles-Carter's footsteps and turn each of your events into many other types of content, from blogs to social media posts to video highlight reels. Repurposing allows you to maximize the ROI and value you get from every piece of content—like Belinda said, why not use it?

Lean into webinar replays

Danielle mentioned that webinar replays have become a standard to-do. Her team will run an event in an American time zone and then play that recording for the next event in the APJ region, and then the event in EMEA as well. The same webinar landing page drives signups for all of the sessions, and all attendees experience the same event.

Using this strategy, Danielle has seen a significant increase in attendance for the additional regions beyond America.

Think creatively about hybrid opportunities

Figma is a great example of a company harnessing the power of hybrid events. Their recent user conference leaned on Goldcast to livestream an in-person user conference out of San Francisco. There were over 200K global attendees, who then organized their own different watch parties throughout the world!

Explore add-ons for accessibility and engagement

After your event, be sure to add captions and translations so that your global audience can access your materials. You can also experiment with add-ons for engagement, like gamification for events using live leaderboards or photobooth options that turn everyone's event photos into a shareable collage.

Use AI for workback plans, intro scripts, and more

Something we want to know from every marketer we talk to right now is: How are you using AI? We're so curious about the different ways people are integrating AI into their existing workflows and using it to streamline processes.

Karen's been a fan of ChatGPT for a while now, for both personal and professional purposes. She'll use it to do anything from whip up a vacation plan for her and her husband to creating workback plans for events—and her workback plans are no small feat. Check out the video below for proof!

While the one shown above was created manually in 2012—long before AI was an option—you can now do very similar things in tools like ChatGPT.

Karen uses very specific prompts to achieve the result she's looking for. For example, a prompt might be: Create a workback plan for a sponsored breakfast at a conference that includes deliverables from the sponsor for branding, creation of branding elements throughout the event, and communications to attendees. The date of the event is May 5, 2024. Please also include wrap-ups with the sponsor and any other post-event follow-up items.

Based on that prompt, ChatGPT provides a bulleted list of what to do in the weeks leading up to an event. It's a great starting point for marketers to work with! It won't come out exactly right and ready to use, but it takes a significant amount of initial work off your plate.

Another use for ChatGPT? Changing up the tone on your marketing emails. Try providing the system with all of the details you want included and then asking it to use a "FOMO tone," a "storytelling tone," or another type of voice than your traditional marketing email. You might find that changing from a more logistical-focused email serves your purposes!

Danielle is another fan of ChatGPT and uses it for speaker and influencer research; the program gives her a list of names that's good to start with. She's also using the platform to figure out a title for her new upcoming series, inspired by our Series Masterclass!

You can even try using AI for "voice of God" or introductory scripts for events; it can help you change up the cadence so it's not always your standard intro and give you different voices to work with. Karen's tried PlayHT with good results and recommends playing around with it to see what it can do for you.

Try Content Lab for AI-based help with content repurposing

"Content Lab is an AI-based program that helps me create video snippets, blogs, email, and social media posts in literally just seconds. Using Content Lab really empowers me." - Danielle Glenn, Global Webinar Program Manager, Software AG

Another great use for AI? Helping you revolutionize the way you chop your event content up into other, bite-sized pieces. Enter: Goldcast's Content Lab!

With Content Lab, all of your teams can get involved with easily creating assets and building out a sustainable cadence for posting across platforms. You can use it to develop social media posts, video clips, follow-up emails, blog outlines, and much more.

Danielle found—and we think you will, too!—that Content Lab is really extending the life cycle of an event. What more could you ask for?

Don't forget to check out the episode to hear the full conversation, including some marketing hacks and hot takes we didn't have time to cover here!

Event Marketers Live with Danielle Glenn and Karen Hartline

© 2024 Copyright Goldcast, Inc. All rights reserved.