Coverings – International Tile & Stone Industry Event

As with all business trade shows, conferences and symposiums, generating and growing event attendance and engagement are critical elements of success for the event owners and sponsors.

Planning a massive event that involves hundreds of huge exhibitors and tens of thousands of attendees from 50 countries around the world in regular times is no small feat. Add to that a pandemic and post-pandemic challenges, and it’s game on!

When the sponsor-owners, board members and event management team for Coverings, North America’s largest international tile and stone tradeshow and conference, needed to revamp the event’s public relations and integrated marketing, they decided to search for a new marketing and public relations firm with the highest level of event marketing experience.

After an exhaustive nationwide search, they chose us, Eberly & Collard Public Relations. They selected our firm for four primary reasons: ECPR’s 21-years of national and international experience marketing construction, design and building products; our firm’s owners’ extensive background in publicizing products specified by builders, architects, designers, and contractors; our staff’s far-reaching connections with national and international media outlets; and the many other large and successful events our team has managed from concept to completion.

How we got there:

To get started, they asked us for a robust, strategic annual marketing plan for the 30th anniversary Coverings event, as well as to execute the 12-month plan leading up to and building momentum for Coverings.

We immediately deployed our patented Research and Discovery process to assess the event’s history, industry position and competitive intelligence; evaluate limitations standing in the way of expanding sponsorships and attendance; and exploring all industry and business sectors to uncover new motivators for engaged involvement within each audience segment.

The program we developed and subsequently managed included a soup-to-nuts approach that solved longtime stopgaps the former marketing firm had contrived. We unequivocally answered and fulfilled the questions: how to grow event attendance; how to market a tradeshow; how to manage press conferences and media tours? …and so much more.

Now, three years and three international events later, ECPR has consistently produced increased attendance, event lead generation, sponsorships, visibility, media coverage, publicity, influencer marketing, and digital marketing.

Notable Media and Client Event Owner's Associations

The Results:

We develop and manage annual, strategic and hands-on year-long program plans that leave no stone unturned in terms of maximizing absolute online, digital and in-person enthusiasm and excitement for attending and sponsoring the tradeshow and conference. In short, we help increase event attendance, grow attendee registration, secure event influencers, and increase event media coverage. – Yeah, we know this list is long. But, for anyone considering a PR firm that specializes in events, you’ll get a lot out of this overview:

  • We created tradeshow marketing in new forms of key event branding, communications and messaging to position the event as the premier, must-attend tradeshow and conference across more than a dozen industry segments and business sectors.
  • Creation of select content that reinforced Coverings event and show sales and marketing efforts, providing publicity-oriented marketing support and related consultation to strengthen Client’s messaging strategies and implementation, with a collaborative goal of enhanced Coverings registration and attendance.
  • Develop and execute content to market Coverings’ digital experience event series, Coverings Connected digital events, virtual events, and to promote the multi-session series and its digital opportunities for educational webinars, Continuing Education Units (CEUs), on-demand content, and online showcase of Coverings’ tile and stone exhibitors.
  • Event- and publicity-planning for exhibitors, including a fully practicable and easy-to-use Exhibitor Publicity Planner guide, to support them with creative concepts, templates and media relations training with never-before-supplied support.
  • Comprehensive media relations management to include pre-event, onsite event and post-event publicity, with an overall 100 percent increase in media coverage for the event and its board and sponsoring owners.
  • Conceptualization of year-round press release and news campaigns to publicize the tradeshow and conference, the event’s international owner-associations, the event’s CEU-based educational sessions, the show’s demonstrations and how-to business sessions, show sponsors, speakers, panelists, influencers, ambassadors, the locations each year, and all aspects to drive media coverage, attendance and engagement from more than 25 types of business professionals and industry sectors.
  • Development, management and administration of intersecting and converging Press Conferences and VIP Press Tours for Tile of Spain, Ceramics of Italy and Tile Council of North America, including vetting and inviting global editors, reporters, journalists, bloggers, etc.
  • Annual, pre-event and onsite public relations and media relations consultation and support for Ceramic Tile Distributor Association, National Tile Contractors Association, Istanbul Mineral Exporters’ Association (IMIB), Anfacer (The Brazilian Association of Manufacturers of Ceramic Tiles, Sanitary Ware and Related Products), Marble Institute of America, World Natural Stone Association, CentroRochas, Tieic Ceramic India Tile to the World, and many other organizations and associations.
  • Streamlined management of the event/show’s press relations, press registration process, digital and onsite press room, press kits, press breakfasts/lunches/dinners, hotel/flight/ground transportation planning and administration for VIP press members, shuttle buses for/with the press, press parties and receptions, hosted/guided press tours throughout multiple convention centers’ trade show floors, and overall media relations.
  • Engagement-winning public relations oversight running at full tilt for 12 months straight- building and boosting event registration, attendance and involvement among all important targets: tile and stone manufactures, installers, architects, engineers, building and remodeling contractors, interior designers, landscape architects, retailers, distributors, kitchen and bath professionals, and many others.
  • Our event marketing specialists built many results-earning public relations campaigns to evoke, grow and maintain interactions with 20+ industry associations’ boards and members, a myriad of industry analysts and trusted brand ambassadors and emissaries from around the globe.
  • Conceptualized, developed and solely manage a comprehensive year-long influencer marketing program to generate visibility, increased brand presence and public relations results for Coverings, comprising planning and overseeing a key industry Influencers Tour of pre-event and onsite content creators to plan and garner both pre-event public relations impressions online and bolster onsite public relations and online/social virality.
  • Researched, qualified, sought, invited, confirmed, planned, and completely managed a select group of valuable design and design-build industry influencers- which included influencer contract management, content creation guidance, oversight of monthly and onsite content creation calendars and execution, all hotel/travel/shuttle arrangements for influencers, a pre-scheduled tour of the Coverings tradeshow and sponsoring owner organizations’ event pavilions and their members’ exhibit booths, and total supervision of this ongoing, annual program.
  • Generated new, creative and unique media coverage and editor involvement throughout numerous consecutive years and to present across all applicable design, design-build, architecture, building, building products, construction, engineering, contractor, installer, remodeler, flooring, tile and stone, kitchen and bath, and other business-to-business specifier trade media.
  • Produced new and increased media coverage and editor involvement throughout numerous consecutive years and to present across a huge target list of consumer magazines, blogs, podcasts, mainstream national business publications, mainstream regional business publications, mainstream local business publications.
  • Development, daily management and ever-increasing growth of event’s annual social media channels, involving paid, unpaid/organic content calendars, posting execution, oversight of all engagement and interactions on event’s social channels on behalf of the event’s owner-associations, strategic copy/captions, creative graphics/imagery/videos/GIFs, etc.
  • Doubling event’s social media engagements and impressions over a 2-year initial span, raising the bar in content creation and faster reply and interaction models that brought about a 68 percent expansion open and active social dialog with design, construction and building product manufacturer industry members from around the world.
  • Conceptualizing and formulating select digital marketing strategies to attempt to stimulate event attendance, registration and other desired actions on the parts of target audiences, involving the implementing social media content with embedded UTM (Urchin Tracking Module) codes, allowing the ability to track click-through website activity and Google Analytics for assessing the performance of the posted content.
  • Analyzing and managing all advertising campaigns and boosted content for trade show’s social media channels to include Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn, producing an average 22 percent increase of attendee lead generation each year through the digital ad campaigns.
  • Tracking and adjusting digital marketing and social media marketing initiatives intended to drive click-throughs to the registration page of trade show and event’s website, and site visitor attendee conversions in the form of 16 percent average registration increase on paid Facebook and LinkedIn ad campaigns year over year.
  • Managing video planning, production, editing, and marketing campaigns to produce and utilize new annual video content to promote the tradeshow, conference, the event’s international owner sponsors, the benefits of tile, and the Why Tile industry organization through a creative Top Tile Trends strategy and angle that showcased and discussed tile trends from around the world; this evoked increased Coverings attendance registration only days after the video was streamed and marketed by the ECPR team.
  • Coordinating with and overseeing video team located in 5 locations, consisting of Interior Design magazine video team, Coverings’ spokesperson Alena Capra, the ECPR in-house video scripting and production team, and all others involved in the project.
  • Increased number and level of tile manufactures and show exhibitors involved in annual videos by 30 percent compared to prior agency; managed all content creation plan, video scripting and video blocking for hosts, video props and products planning and acquisition from more than 6 countries, acting as lead video director and production shoot lead, including video production and editing, text on screen production, managing production crew.
  • Supplying strategy support, scripting, content creation, presentations, soundbites, and technical support for event’s spokesperson Alena Capra, and supplied coordination for her annual video guest appearances.
  • Served on marketing committee for event to include speaker and panelist acquisitions with pre-event marketing to promote educational sessions and conference. Created strategies for publicizing event speakers and free CEUs for attendees.
  • Wrote and distributed press and social media content to announce and promote environment awareness and environmental sustainability offered by building products like tile. Publicized EPA Senior Advisor Alison Kinn Bennett as event speaker.
  • Developed a plan for KPIs to include what, how and when to measure engagement analytics for all communication modules and messaging campaigns.