Western & English Sales Association

Denver Market Social Promotion

The WESA Denver Market is regarded as the single-sourcing entity for more than 2,500 product lines, bringing 7,000+ retailers to the market each year. They reached out to us to for a social marketing campaign to help increase awareness of the event and stimulate attendance.

The Challenge

WESA is known as the world's largest trade event for the western industry, attracting a global audience to Denver's bi-annual market. However, in recent years, attendance has declined, due in large to the emerging prevalence of e-commerce. WESA reached out to us to for a social marketing campaign to help increase awareness of the event, engagement at the event, and to stimulate attendance for the future.

While the western community is known for many things, being heavy social media users is not one of them. We had to come up with a way to engage the audience on social platforms that would resonate with them and encourage them to interact.

The Solution

We developed a social marketing campaign to engage attendees in a digital format and encourage them to connect with WESA. We created a booth at the market called the Social Arena where a social wall displayed hashtagged content in real time, providing visibility and encouraging people to get involved socially. Past events had an organic and fragmented social presence; the attendees who posted used different hashtags thereby distilling any viral conversation. We centralized everything under #WESADenver with allowing market-goers to share their experiences with others. We created a ton of event promo, from giveaways to pop-up banners and floor stickers to distribute knowledge of the hashtag throughout the event.

Another way we sought to engage attendees was by giving away thousands of stress ball horses with the hashtag #DennyGoesToDenver on them. Brand ambassadors would pass them out and encourage people to take the horse and help tell the story of what Denny did when he went to Denver. People were taking pictures of him enjoying various thing at the market and posting it to social media, creating a fun elf-on-the-shelf style game.

The results were impressive. Comparing the January market in 2016 to January 2017, WESA saw a 2,004% increase in Facebook impressions, a 4,101% increase in reach, and a 2,944% increase in engaged users. Instagram also showed an impressive reach with over 2 million impressions.

All of these results combined resulted in an increased attendance in January 2017 with an even higher rate of adoption.

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