Inner Circle

Marketing Strategy  

Case Study: NPE2015: The International Plastics Showcase

by Shauna Peters

NPE2015 was the largest in its 69-year history, the best attended and the most international. Here are just a few strategies and tactics used by mdg and NPE that contributed to the record-breaking results …

Messaging. The campaign utilized show ambassadors MATT (Machines and Technology of Tomorrow) and his gal-pal POLY (Polymer) to tell the story of NPE in an alternative, more relatable tone of voice. As a machine, MATT was stiff and robotic but POLY portrayed the softer, more flexible side of materials. Together, through bitstrips on social media, graphic emails and blog posts, they promoted event features and benefits through industry-related humor.

Content Marketing. Google Alerts and were used to monitor the plastics industry and its impact on key vertical markets. This content then fed social media channels and helped build messaging that integrated the industry (new innovations, emerging trends and predictions) with the show’s offerings.

International Digital Marketing. With increased international attendance as a primary goal for 2015, mdg developed a robust digital marketing campaign using Google AdWords and retargeting. We developed keyword, text ad and retargeting banners in nine languages and used geo-targeting and unique messages for each target audience. The results? 7,429 direct registrations and an additional 11,940 view-through registrations.

Guest Passes. Twelve weeks prior to the show, mdg personally contacted exhibitors, explaining how to use the customized, electronic pass as well as why—ensuring they understood what a powerful customer relation and lead-gen tool it could be. The personal outreach maximized usage and helped truly engage exhibitors as active partners in promotion.

VIP Program. Midwest-based plastics manufacturers were identified as a key target audience for this year’s event. As such, a specialized VIP program was developed around this audience, incorporating in-person attendee sales calls, a custom letter and free pass from the NPE chairman and personalized, targeted emails.

Niche Marketing. mdg launched a 3-tier campaign to vertical markets. We …

  1. offered relevant, valuable content in exchange for prospects’ data.
  2. sent targeted direct mail to the new prospects.
  3. sent emails explaining how attending NPE covers their segments of the industry and will benefit their businesses.

This approach allowed us to create a meaningful connection to vertical markets that were unaware of NPE or didn’t see the relevance to their industry segment.