Following on from part 1 of Robin Brattel’s talk at the 30th anniversary International Confex show, here we conclude how social media and online platforms can be used effectively in event organisation and promotion.
Our first installment finished off by discussing the six stages of online community development and how you can identify them. Now, it’s important to understand the impact that guiding someone from being a ‘lurker’ to a ‘brand advocate’ can have when trying to organise and promote your event.
There are three stages of any event – the before, during and after. When used correctly, social media is an excellent tool that can be used for promotion, engagement and even extending the life of an event.
Before – This is the time when you are no doubt going to want to promote and raise awareness of your event. Social media can help you to:
- Engage your audience and create chatter
- Encourage social introductions through likes and shares
- Target influencers you wouldn’t normally have access to
- Increase success – people are 71% more likely to buy from a company if they have been referred to via social media
During – Whilst your event is taking place you want to engage with your attendees as much as possible. There are a number of ways you can use social media during this time to actively encourage participation from everyone there:
- Create a Twitter hashtag and encourage anyone tweeting about the event to use it
- Maintain interest – good quality and interesting content is quick and easy to post and keeps you at the forefront of people’s minds
- Go viral – competitions are a great way to encourage people to like and retweet content that will then be seen by their connections
- Live streaming of the event can be watched by those who couldn’t attend and uploading highlights onto a YouTube video can be used for future promotions
After – Just because your event is over it doesn’t mean that the hype has to die down. Social media is a great way of extending the life of your event and there are a number of ways you can ensure that people carry on talking about it:
- Videos – with 800 million users on YouTube you potential audience is massive
- Blogging – posting a write-up of your event is a great way to remind people about it, inform those who couldn’t attend and even create excitement about the next one
- Photos – people love seeing photos and they are easy to notice and share on social media platforms
- Ask for feedback – as well as finding out what people thought of your recent event, asking what they would like to see next time is a sure fire way to guarantee getting people through the door
By now, most people are familiar with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube. However, there are also a number of other platforms available that are well suited to a number of different uses:
Flickr – this is a great place to upload photos before, during and after your event
Presdo.com – a good networking tool prior to your event
Corkboard.me – can be used for collaboration and sharing content
Sentiment140.com – one of the many sentiment tools you can use during your event
Coveritlive.com – a good way to curate content during your event