Marketing Tribe | Tips on how to plan an amazing pharmacy event

Organising an event is a big investment of time, effort and money. So, when you organise one and have little turnout it can be very deflating. That’s why some pharmacies are deterred from hosting events due to the fear of lack of interest from customers. 

However, creating and hosting a successful event can be very beneficial to your pharmacy. It is a great opportunity to strengthen your relationship with customers and increase foot traffic into your storefront. Therefore, today we will share some tips on how to create an AMAZING event for your pharmacy.

Like any other marketing strategy, an event that you host at your pharmacy must be customer centric. That is why before planning any event, ask yourself the below questions:

  • How will this event help and provide value to my customers?
  • How can I promote this event, so it reaches my target audience?

How will this event help and provide value to my customers?

Every event you create for your pharmacy must serve a purpose and have a defined vision. This vision will align with your pharmacy’s services and how you can help your customers. When you create an event that provides value to your customer it should create interest.  

Now as a pharmacy you have a wealth of knowledge about various health issues and services. However, this is where it’s important that you tailor your events to suit your target audience. That is because it must appear attractive to them. The event must be something that they believe will better improve their (or family’s) lives. Otherwise why would they attend?

For example, if your pharmacy is situated in an aging population and you decide to host a first-time mother’s event, do you think this would relate to your customer base? A better alternative to that option might be hosting an event about pain management. 

Do the research and investigate how you can further educate or assist your customers with their health and lifestyle needs. From there plan an event according to your findings.

One last tip we would like to share is that you can be creative with your events. You don’t always have to do the run of the mill ‘information night’. Host an event something that people will talk about for months after. There are some pharmacies that are really thinking outside the square when it comes to their events. They are taking the time to understand what customers value from them as a pharmacist and using that as opportunities to build relationships. Use events for networking with customers and to help build your community’s health destination. 

Some of the different type of events I have seen include:

  • Health and wellbeing expos
  • Free hearing checks
  • Women’s health
  • Men’s health
  • Mother’s Group
  • Walking Clubs
  • Allied Health Panels
  • VIP Shopping Nights  
  • Diabetes Support Groups
  • And many more

How can I promote this event, so it reaches my target audience?

Event planning is more than just sending out an invite. It involves a heavy load of marketing and communication to your customers. So, when you decide to host an event ensure you are organised and provide yourself with enough time to promote the event.

Furthermore, the key to hosting a successful pharmacy is having the right promotional strategy in place. Without knowing about the event, how can you expect people to attend?  

Like the actual event itself, the promotional strategy must reflect your target audience. Every advertisement, invite or feature about the event must reach your target audience. Utilise your various marketing channels and strategies to communicate the value of the event to customers.

Some marketing strategies you could use for your event promotion include:

  • Email Invitation
  • Video Invitation- shared on all your social media platforms
  • Notice on the Community Board at the local shopping centre
  • Blog and articles providing insight about the event
  • Social media posts and paid advertisements
  • Facebook event
  • Invitation displayed inside your pharmacy
  • Train your staff to invite customer to events
  • Shared the event details with other local businesses and allied health organisations

It’s so important that you understand what channels your target audience would engage with. This is crucial for all your marketing. To learn more about your target audience please read Kick Starting Your Marketing Plan. Remember to be creative with your marketing, ensuring your event is appealing to the right audience.

For example, you might be doing an event to inform women about how to handle menopause. So, for the month prior to the event you could write a blog series about various menopausal symptoms.  This blog isn’t designed to solely promote your event but to become a resource for women to refer to when they are dealing with menopause. However, let women know that you will be hosting an event to help guide them through this often stressful process. The blog will be like a teaser of what content and information the event will entail.

We would recommend  that you allow at least four to six weeks to promote the event to customers. This must include at least a once a week reminder, however do not just spam them through their inbox. Mix up your marketing across your various marketing channels. A great tip is to use a ticket tracking website such as Event Brite to track your RSVP’s. That way you can measure and see if your marketing is gaining traction.

Remember to follow up post event with feedback

Once the party is over the real fun begins…. seeking feedback and measuring the success of the event! You want to ensure that post event you look at the success of project and measuring its worth. Sometimes, an event may not achieve the results you’re after however it doesn’t mean it’s a failure. It means that either your promotional strategy wasn’t effective, logistics might have been off, or the customer didn’t engage with the event’s content. Do the research into why it hasn’t worked and use that information for all future events.

Furthermore, if your event was a hit make sure you know why. Understand why the event worked and how you can replicate that in the future. Also, promote the success of the event on your various marketing channels to spark interest for projects in the future.

Event planning for pharmacies doesn’t have to be daunting

Like any worthwhile venture- it takes time. Event planning does require a certain level of planning and detail. However, when you create a valuable event with the right promotional strategy it can be extremely beneficial for your pharmacy. Enjoy the process and reap the benefits!

written by our Client Communications Manager- Sarah Rendell