Social media is an event marketer’s best friend, and it can be the key to securing registrations. Whether the event is a two-day long conference, a luncheon for 100 people, or an industry networking event, it should be heavily promoted using every relevant social media platform. Let’s face it, the average internet user spends 118 minutes on social media per day, so using these platforms when promoting an event is almost essential. Here are 5 must do’s that will ensure you utilize social media to the fullest when tasked with event marketing.
1. Pick your social channels wisely.
LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram: pick your poison. I like to use every medium possible, but if you want to focus your efforts on only a few, I would go with LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook; content posted on those sites is easily shared among users.
2. Target specific accounts
Figure out the local groups that would be interested in your event. For example, if you are marketing a day-long conference for healthcare leaders, you want to figure out the social media info for local healthcare organizations, hospitals, research facilities, etc. Compile a list of their social media handles, links to their social accounts, and hashtags that they usually use. Then you can use this information to get the word out by tweeting at them, using their hashtags, and mentioning them in facebook posts- always including a link to the event. The doctor’s and industry leaders that follow those accounts will see the mentions and hopefully click and register.
3. Use the symbol formally known as a pound sign: the hashtag.
Let’s face it, unless you have hundreds of relevant followers, no one will see your posts. How will anyone know about your event, you ask? They will know because you tactfully employ hashtags. This little symbol will archive your post with other posts that have the same hashtag. So if you are hosting a women’s networking event, using the hashtags #FemaleEntrepreneurs or #PowerWomen will let people- your target audience- scrolling through that hashtag see your post. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram all have a hashtag function.
4. Reach out for social share support!
It is advantageous to get the people associated with the event on board with social sharing. Whether they are organizers, speakers, or sponsors, every share counts. Email them and get them to pitch in! I recommend making it as easy as possible for them to share information. Send them the link of a specific post or tweet and ask them to share. This will expand the reach of the event to relevant networks. Reach out to affiliates, sponsors, media, local influencers, and registrants.
5. Post often
Your social media strategy will only work if you actually execute it. It is smart to post about the event every day. Change up what you post about and who you are targeting, but always be sure to post because registrations happen when people are reminded of the event.
Keep the content you are posting relevant and new and always, always, always, link it to the event sign-up page. If it is a conference with keynotes, talk about them in social posts. If it is a networking event, talk about the people who will be there. If it is a fun tour, give facts about the venue. Whatever it is that you post, be sure to do it often!
Social media is a really great tool for event marketing, but it only works if you have focused on all of the above. So next time you are marketing an event, remember to seize the social realm and watch your registrations roll in.