The number of events has multiplied in the last decade: networking cocktails, congresses, conferences, shows, meetings and happy hours are just some (but certainly not all) examples. Thanks to social media, planning events is simpler, and promoting them is cheaper than ever before.
An event’s success may depend largely on its planning, but its visibilty comes a very close second. Social media has revolutionized technology, and has shaken up how we promote events.
Here are some tips for optimizing social media before, during and after your event:
Before: : Timing is everything, and timing your official event announcement is a pretty big deal. Think well in advance (even a few months ahead) on how exactly you want to tell the world. Once the world knows about your event, promote it! You’ll be pleasantly surprised by the plethora of choices at your disposal for attracting a diversified audience. You can start with something as simple as photos (either from a previous edition of the event, or the organizers in action). Pictures speak a thousand words, and the best part of all, is that they can be a marketing tool right up to the big day.
Testimonials are equally effective. Think about someone you could interview; maybe the event’s founder(s) or winners/participants from previous editions.
Optimize social media by maximizing your visibility. For instance, you can organize a Facebook event with all the vital info, and share the event on your personal page to help spread the word.
In addition, allot a certain percentage of your publications for building your membership and intensifying your actions. An event-customized hashtag that will be used before, during and after the event can be very useful for centralizing all your content.
Send out plenty of reminders, mention any prizes up for grabs, organize contests, etc.
During : It might sound obvious, but you need to be present during your event, and not just physically so. It’s critical to inspire your guests to participate in the event and make the content visible throughout the day or evening. It’s all about your hashtag. Showcase it at the entrance, and brand it on your tables, screens and other objects. Guests will consequently add it to any pics they’re taking, or to their status on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and your community will be able to follow the conversations together in one place.
If you have the budget, we recommend installing large screens that showcase any live tweets or Instagram pics related to your event.
Find someone on your team who will be exclusively responsible for your social community, who will leverage the appropriate broadcasting tools, and will ensure follow-ups and monitoring throughout the event.
After : The people who are most engaged with your community will, once again, be very useful during the post-event period. Ask them to write blog posts on your event and to publish an event photo album (with pictures taken by a professional photographer). Above all, don’t forget to publish an official thank-you to all the people who contributed to the success of your event.
Social media is all about metrics, and this is where your social media management tool comes in. Whether you opt for Hootsuite, Google Analytics or Facebook stats, you’ll be able to measure the effectiveness of your social media activities. Crunch the numbers and quantify your actions on the different platforms in order to evaluate your overall success.
Thanks to social media, organizing and promoting an event has become much easier. Visibility opportunities for you and your event are infinite. All you need to bring to the table are imagination, planning and professionalism to ensure an online image that reflects your brand. So, don’t be afraid to play—with photos, videos, publications and interviews that enhance the value of your organization’s content. You will reap the rewards in a successful event that will keep people talking.