Reina Villanueva, is head of marketing at ROAR B2B, organiser of B2B Marketing Expo, RWM Exhibition, LegalEx, Naidex, Call & Contact Centre Expo. Strategic marketing specialist Villanueva previously worked at Tembo and Media 10 and cites Kate Disley and Rob Nathan amongst her marketing mentors. Here she tells EN about her typical working day.
I start each day with catchups with the team, look at what our registration is like and where we’re at and I also do some execution.
We have a marketing plan. The first thing you need to do is have a marketing plan. What’s scheduled today, what’s happening tomorrow, what’s happening next week. And I normally either write email copy or sign them off.
Every day in my job is different because working on so many different events, dropping in where I need to troubleshoot or solve a problem. If we are far from our target for this event, I can look at where we are in relation to our targets and think ‘what can I do today to get us where we need to be?’
The marketing managers and marketing execs will be looking at the plan and checking their lists and tasks for the day. But then if there’s anything I can work on to improve that is my day to day role.
It’s crucial to have a schedule. I’ve learned that way especially from Kate Disley. You need to know what you’re focusing on this week, your communication blocks, what you’ve promised to partners, otherwise you’ll miss the chance to send a post that is relevant and topical today or annoy sales because you haven’t posted something you’ve promised to a sponsor or lose that relationship with them.
It’s important for me to have a plan. But there are companies that don’t. They have a strategy, but not a plan so don’t know what’s happening week to week. It’s very important for exhibition marketing to know and have a calendar and timeline of content in order to get to your objectives.
For example you have speaker announcements, you can put in calendar, but during that time if national mental health awareness week or disability week, you know which speaker may do the best out of that.
I give a lot of input in terms of design because I started as a graphic designer. Here we don’t have a graphic design team. When we hire marketers we want to make sure they can design and I train them to be meticulous.
I like to give them tasks to see how they design and write copy.
I wasn’t an event marketer originally, but I had good mentors in Kate and Rob Nathan at Media 10.
I was working for the Fifty Plus Show, an exhibition for active over 50s and that was my first exhibitions job, Rob just said to me ‘we need to create a brochure and create it on InDesign. I had never used Indesign, but he said – ‘take an hour, learn to use it.
Now with Canva it is easier than ever.
We used to pay a lot for video edit. We still pay for videos at the events but day to day content and promotional videos, it’s the marketing team that do that.
With exhibition marketing it’s important that you are creative. You get an influx of content from speakers six weeks out and you have to announce that right away. It’s important that you create templates and then you can drop those straight in.
That’s quite unique in terms our industry.
We create the templates 16 to 17 weeks out, and the CRM helps because Hubspot will schedule and you don’t have to do it manually.
Just pre-show, one or two weeks out you have to prepare your show guides. Some of them we might get designed for us, but mostly they are done in-house. At that point you have done all your marketing, you just need to prepare all your marketing materials for your event and promotions at the venue. And if you have media partners make sure they have what they need.
On the day, there are events that have press offices, but some don’t so the marketing team will look after the press, cater to them, provide everything they need.
We are the face the exhibitions. Without us, you won’t know about it, your exhibitors won’t know about it. They won’t invest and operations won’t need to build the show.