Here’s the sanitized (anonymized) start email I got today:
Subject: Countdown: One week away! Register today!
[EVENT NAME HERE] Expo + Conference
ONE WEEK AWAY! REGISTER TODAY!
Last Chance to Register in Advance for the 2009 [EVENT] Expo + Conference!
What’s missing from the entire message is any mention of where — like a city and state — the heck this event is.Yeah, I was able to determine the location within one copy/paste/click to Google in my web browser… but I shouldn’t have needed to.
Similarly, here’s a text-averaged version of a kind of message I typically get one or two of per week. (I’ve used a real month, for simplicity.)
[COMPANY] will unveil [NEW STUFF ]in October and would like to brief
you on the new offering at [EVENT NAME] if you will be attending.
If available to schedule on either Tuesday, October or 14th
or Wednesday, Oct. 15, [etc]…
Again, see the problem?
Here’s a reply I’ve put together… although I may not actually use it.
(I do have a standard “Thanks, but I’m not planning to attend this event.”
boilerplate message, which I do use frequently.)
Dear PR person,
Thanks for the invite.
There are a lot of events out there. I haven’t heard of
many of them, and don’t know where or when most are.
While the odds are I won’t be attending most events, you’d
make it easier for me to consider your invitation if you
included the location and date in your email invite —
preferably in the first or second paragraph. Including
the full name of the event, and URL, wouldn’t hurt, either.
Yes, I can usually suss this out in three seconds via Google.
But there’s no reason to make me do this.
In case it isn’t clear, here’s the take-away advice:
Include City/State Location And Date In All Event Invites/Reminders
You won’t necessarily get any more press to attend… but who knows? I do my best to poke my head in at local events when I can… but won’t necessarily chase down the “where’s it at” that would let me know it’s local.
(I suspect you’ll also pick up more non-press attendees.)