How To Prepare For A Pop-Up Event

By now all the pop-up shops that sprang up to sell gift items during the holidays have disappeared, but did you know the pop-up concept can also apply in the event industry year round?

Similar to the retail model, pop-up events are temporary, surprising events that are held for a short period, usually in a unique location you would never expect.

picture of two men in a pop-up eventThe concept has been used successfully by entities ranging from restaurants to art galleries and workshops.

Even the corporate world is using pop-up events for product launches and intimate sales events as a form of experiential marketing.

When they are planned properly, pop-up events can have a high impact for the sponsor or event planner in a short time period. They can increase customer engagement and expand brand awareness to an entirely new audience.


The following are tips on how to prepare for a successful pop-up event:


  1. Set a goal: You need a specific reason for hosting an event so that you can have a goal to work towards and ideas of expected outcomes. What are you trying to achieve by hosting this pop-up shop? 

    Setting a goal gives you a place to start, from there you can build on to your campaign and get a better understanding of what details are important to your pop-up in order to achieve these goals; location, favors, social media, etc. For more on how to create achievable goals click here or keep reading.

  2. Have a unique idea: Don't be afraid to be daring and find interesting, unique ways for your brand to interact with the public that hasn't been done before. 

    Instead of a bland product introduction, use your product to break a world record; instead of adding a menu item, host a cooking competition to find a chef who makes it the best. Depending on your event, you have a variety of options out there, you just have to get creative.

    Check out the examples below of some of the most unique pop-up ideas. 

    kate & spade new york

    have a sprite shower

    gilmore girls luke's diner
                                                                     (Above: Gilmore Girls Luke's Diner)

    adidas shop

    models own bottleshop

  3. Find an unusual venue: Think about seasonal opportunities like the beach or an igloo, even use part of the city that is being revitalized to set up shop.

    The trick is that you are coming to the people, not the other way around. Your pop-up shop should be in a convenient location like in front of a store, a busy mall, on the beach, pier, farmer's market etc. Go where the people go.

    Of course before setting up shop, make sure you meet all the necessary licenses and any insurances that may be required depending on your location. If you are unfamiliar with the laws regarding pop-ups, here are 5 legal requirements every pop-up shop much follow, brought to you by FindLaw.

  4. Build awareness: The very nature of a pop-up event is built for social media. To ensure people know about your soon to be pop-up, you should broadcast it first; produce short videos, tease the date, create giveaways, share what to expect at the pop-up and why it’s a must see.

    To make it social media friendly, go beyond creating an event hashtag and create amazing backdrops and picture opportunities at the event as a form of advertising for your event.

    four ladies picture with amazing backdrops

  5. Manage your ticketing: If this is a ticketed event, work with a professional company that provides a complete ticketing solution so you can focus on making the event spectacular.

    You want to make purchasing tickets available online if possible, so you don’t have to worry about ticketing the day of. If you are considering Purplepass for your registration, you can read more and see why we are one of the easiest ticketing software around. 

    purplepass experiential marketingToday, some of the most memorable marketing strategies include an experience that’s impossible to forget, and experiential marketing might be right for your business. Download our beginner's guide for Experiential Marketing below!


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