Convention PR & Marketing Plan

This PR and Marketing Plan is a resource to assist you in promoting your meetings in Philadelphia.

The more work you can accomplish in advance, the greater chances of meeting your promotional goals. Please add us to your media mailing list and send a copy of your program when it is complete. If you have any questions or need any assistance, please contact the Communications Department at 215-636-3341. If you are interested in hiring a local full-service public relations agency, please let us know and we are happy to provide recommendations.


Communications Timeline

Communications timeline for planners.

Public Relations Strategies

Target Your Stories

The PHLCVB maintains local media lists for your use. At least six months prior to your event, request lists and add the appropriate contacts to your database. Target stories to specific departments, i.e. health, science, education or business media, for more effective results. Remember to keep it simple — you may know certain industry terms, but that doesn’t mean that the media and public do, too. Media will be more apt to cover your events if news items have mass appeal and can be understood by people outside the industry. Make the connection between your industry news and public interest.

Look for Trends

Is there a trend in your industry that might make a great story? Often, reporters need to see a trend to cover an industry convention. Know what the trends are in your industry and you could become a part of a major feature story.

Find a Local Angle

In Philadelphia, many conventions identify with the city’s history of hosting the nation’s very first convention (the Continental Congress) and the first convention of people of color, and incorporate this into pitches to the media. Promote your attendance and economic impact projections with the PHLCVB, so Philadelphia organizations and businesses will see the importance of your convention and help support your efforts. Work with a local charity by donating all extra show food and beverages to a food bank, or promote your efforts with a community program.

Plan for Media

If you anticipate having media come through your show or meetings, plan on staffing a press room. This area should include up-to-date press releases, photographs, resources, computers with Internet access, and at least one phone line staffed to answer media inquiries during show hours. A press room also serves as a meeting place for interviews with speakers and executives, and a checkpoint for escorting media onto the show floor. Get consent from all speakers prior to inviting media, and have specific materials prepared, including the agenda, speakers’ bios, and a schedule of events. Be accessible — list a specific room where your event is taking place. Media who cannot find an event cannot cover an event, and sometimes cannot wait until a public relations representative is found on the show floor. If you release information through a press release, be accessible and list phone numbers where interested media can always reach you.

Timing is Everything

The key to promoting a convention or tradeshow is an early start. If you are trying to increase attendance, do not rely on local media. Your best bet for driving attendance is to focus pre-convention efforts on trade magazines and newsletters in your industry, which are more likely to give upcoming conventions and tradeshows substantial coverage.

Local media almost always focus on a meeting when it arrives. Keep current events in mind when pitching stories. Last-minute pitches regarding current news items often generate great coverage


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