The Problem: Event Engagement Is Lacking
You invest time, energy, and money into planning a Fireside chat, Meet-Up, or networking event. You hope and pray, "If you build it they will come."
Only to find out that RSVPs or ticket purchases are lower than anticipated. Sound familiar?
Or how about this scenario . . .
Perhaps you're able to sell out a full house. Then the event comes and goes. Your attendees have taken photos with friends, guests, or colleagues to share on social media, but you haven't provided an easy way to capture that experience.
What if we told you there's something you can do to fix this?
The Solution: Social Media Marketing
To improve your event engagement and boost attendance, you need to do a few things. What's most important is to think through the Three Stages of Social Media Marketing for Events.
If you're not convinced that social media marketing is the solution, take a look at the Five Surprising Facts About Social Marketing
. We hope this changes your mind.
Before the Event: How Do You Know How Many People You Can Reach?
Choosing the right platform to promote your event is important. Knowing how many people your event can reach is just as important.
What if we told you there was a tool you could use to see how far your social reach is?
Calculate your social reach here!
Whether you promote your event through Twitter, Facebook, Eventbrite, or LinkedIn, it's helpful in the invitation to include a unique #hashtag so you can track your event!
It's also a great way to capture attendees and their experiences based on the pictures posted to social media.
During the Event: Engage with Your Audience
Engage with your attendees—like, share, retweet, and respond to their posts, questions, or comments.
You can also offer raffle prizes to attendees who post to social media using your event #hashtag.
Here's why using a #hashtag is a good idea . . .
- It's a great way to increase engagement during your event
- It encourages your attendees to be content creators
- It also encourages attendees to share their experience with their social network
AND you can capture this exposure with your #hashtag.
If appropriate and your budget allows for it, consider recording your event. Especially if there is a keynote speech, fireside chat, or panel discussion. These discussions all have great content you are curating anyway, so why not record it and maximize it for future use?
As your event comes to a close, don't forget to plug how you plan to engage with attendees in the future. Maybe you want to share:
After the Event: Follow Up
- Upcoming events
- Ask for support at future events—speakers, sponsors, volunteers
- Plant the seed that their feedback will be requested in a follow-up survey
Now that your event has come to a close, you need to follow up, much like any other social marketing campaign.
A great starting place is thanking your attendees! You'll also likely want to know what you did well and what you could improve. If you're really serious about feedback, you could also incentivize feedback. There are a few ways you can do this depending on your budget:
- You could raffle a few Starbucks gift cards
- Offer a discount to your next event
- Advanced register for your next event
Encourage attendees to continue to share your event using your event #hashtag.
Also, a huge plus—if your event offers a keynote speech or some other type of speaking engagement AND you were able to record it, share the links to those videos via your companies' youtube channel or website so your attendees can continue to relive the event!
This article was originally published on MarketBeam
MarketBeam is an AI-driven, personalized, social marketing platform that utilizes untapped executives' and employees' social networks to increase reach, elevate their brands, and nurture leads dramatically beyond the usual corporate channels.
Gamification encourages content-sharing on social networks while building executive branding and individual employee thought leadership. AI-driven analytics constantly learn and identify top influencers, popular content, and social networks to maximize marketing ROI.
Opinions expressed by the author are not necessarily those of WITI.
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