As event season approaches, many of us are left with a question mark. Countless Marketing teams work tirelessly to promote their next event, to make it bigger and better than the year before. What they don’t know is that each year, planning an event gets easier and easier as new technologies come to life. There are a number of benefits of using your pre-existing Social Media sites to host your next event. These benefits include increasing Social Media presence and promoting backlinks to your site. This year, Social Media should be a key event planning tool. Learn to promote, inform and become memorable with these tips that will rock your event. If implemented effectively, you won’t be able to keep people away!
Invite on Twitter
After securing a date for the event, it’s important to start planning how you’ll begin to promote it. In order to obtain the maximum number of invitees to come to your event, it’s important to start advertising weeks or even months in advance. There is absolutely no doubt that many guests will be tweeting about your event by sharing news with their followers, asking questions or even writing about the different guest speakers or overall content. The key here is engagement. Even if you have to hire Social Media experts, you must respond to your guests’ questions and comments. Twitter is a great way to get your event up and running.
Start by making the most of hashtags. This way, you’ll have an easier time keeping track of dialogue people are having on the event. When promoting your event in the time leading up to it, it’s important to craft a hashtag that will be memorable to your audience. With that said, creating a genuine event name will most likely stick out and spark intrigue among your Twitter followers. To illustrate, suppose your event name is the Optimum7 Leadership Conference 2012, use a hashtag along the lines of #O7C, and use this same hashtag every time you mention the event. Remember to create something easy to remember as well as a term that tends to generate buzz. If your hashtag is used frequently enough, it might even have the power to become a trend in Twitter.
Hashtags will not only make your event memorable, but will also help you during the actual event and even after it’s over. They will help you gain feedback. Ask your attendees how the event went on Twitter and plan the next event according to their answers.
Use LinkedIn and Google +
Facebook and Twitter are not the only Social Media sites you should be focusing on. If your goal is to plan an industry event, you should be paying very close attention to LinkedIn. LinkedIn will facilitate the selection of invitees you might want to target. It will also allow you to post event updates on a centralized page instead of taking up space on your main company page. Google + is often neglected during company events, but the truth is that Google + offers several benefits other sites lack. For instance, you may be able to send automatic mail invitations, event reminders as well as add the event in Google calendar for those individuals who’ve already RSVP’d. This is a very useful tool for small and medium sized events where networking is the main goal.
Update Your Audience
It’s important that once you launch your promotion to the masses, keep your audience updated every step of the way. You may use a variety of Social Media sites to do this. The best way is to make announcements on all of them in order to reach a vast audience. Keep in mind that your goal is for your attendees to look forward to the event. As a result, keep them updated on new speakers, events, dinners and transportation. For instance, if registration opens a certain day, it would be wise to announce it on the Social Media outlets. Other news you may want to announce include: Sponsors and their roles and prospective attendees. Many individuals tend to be persuaded to attend an event according to who else will be attending. Vamp up your ticket sales by promoting your audience!
Your event updates should not stop once the event begins. Keep in mind that some people may still want to ask questions once in the event setting. For this reason, keep all your Social Media profiles available at all times. Providing a positive experience to your attendees is closely related to being able to deal with new issues fast and efficiently, which Social Media allows you to do almost effortlessly.
After you’ve secured your keynote speakers, be sure to add them on Twitter. This will serve two key purposes. First, it’s important for your attendees to be able to ask your presenters questions via Twitter. Since that’s not always possible, encourage your attendees to leave comments and questions on the speaker’s Twitter page using the event hashtag. Remember to let the speaker know about this process. He/she may want to answer some of the questions in public at the end of the presentation. Second, it’s very important to be able to retweet your presenter’s comments and answers for maximum exposure. Your goal is not only to run a smooth event, but also to gain a significant amount of new followers that may turn into future business. This use of Twitter will make your event far more engaging. It will also make the audience feel as if they were part of the presentation. The fact that these tips are simple to execute may also give you extra time to focus on the event details that may consume most of your time.
Create Exceptional Content
We’ve already talked about creating hashtags and generating buzz by engagement. But we must remember a key aspect of every successful event: Exceptional promotional content. Just like in your Internet Marketing efforts, content is always king. Therefore, running a Social Media campaign with remarkable content may just make the difference between good and outstanding. Posting updates and event information won’t cut it. Remember to include contests to get your audience vamped up about the event. Other ways to strengthen your promotional campaign include writing articles on your blog to assist your attendees with event preparation, using giveaways and prizes to get your audience excited about event activities and presentations. Be sure to share videos or photos of previous events. This way your audience knows what to expect.
No event should be planned without the use of Social Media. It is the best avenue to use for promotion, it can reach an unlimited amount of people and it gives you almost instantaneous feedback during and after your event so that you can take notes and keep improving as you host more of them.
For a free consultation about marketing your next event for your business, contact Optimum7 today!