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How to best utilise social media when promoting an event

April 7, 2014 by In House Marketing

Pillingers on twitter

Incorporate social media into your next corporate event.

Trawling through your Facebook and Twitter feeds is meant to be something you do in your downtime, but often it ends up being a mammoth task sifting through all of the bad posts and advertisements that flood the feed. However, the potential for social media to be harnessed for the good of your brand is still there. It's simply a matter of being smart with how you connect with you audience in the lead up to your big event.

When you’re promoting an event through social media, you need to remember that first impressions count – if you can’t attract, engage and maintain a relationship with your audience from the beginning, then you will struggle to get the message across by the time your event rolls around.

Here’s how you can make the most out of your social media impressions:

Not prepared? Not interested.

When it comes to Twitter, simply setting up the account and making sure your tweets are succinct just isn’t enough. If you haven’t even bothered to change the profile picture from the default egg photo, you won’t even be able to lose viewers as you won’t gain them in the first place. Instant recognisability is key – get a bold, clear photo for your profile/icon photo and ensure that your handle is easy to remember. If the event is for a product that is distinct from your brand than set up a handle for the event specifically. This way anything to do with the lead up to your event doesn't have to clutter the stream of your regular brand account. It's also a good way to lure in a few more followers; people are often more keen to follow and interact with an event than they are a brand.

Communication is key

Remember that, just like face-to-face contact, communication is generally a two-way street. Spark up conversation in your updates, ask questions, and incite conversation. While it’s okay to post some strictly-event-only updates, you will need to do these only on the odd occasion, and intersperse them between interesting posts, photos and conversations. If your event has some celebrity weight behind it or you've invited a few key bloggers, journos or people-around-town make sure you include a few tweets that address them directly. Ask them if they've got their outfit picked out, any music suggestions or any guesses about who the surprise performer for the night will be. By getting these key influencers involved in a public discussion you're drawing more eyeballs than you would if you were just tweeting about yourself.

Be open and available

Don’t think that once you’ve set up your profile properly and populated it with interesting bits of news, tips, questions, videos and whatever else you can think of, that your job is over and you can walk away. You will need to respond to comments made on your Facebook page, search relevant Twitter hashtags, follow people you feel relate to your event, and keep up an active, lively profile in general. Try an get people involved as much as possible; your community is 100% your best asset. Producing social media content can be time consuming so get your followers to do it for you! Get them to send in images, opinion pieces, questions etc about your launch or product. This way you're establishing a real connection with your audience and also getting to know the way your future customers work.

Social media sounds like an arduous task, but it is powerful and can be the difference between a raging success of an event or a raging failure. Just remember, once your event is in full swing isn't the time to lose shop on your social media campaign. Set up some AV equipment so that tweets, images and videos can be streamed live throughout the event. This will not only give you plenty of content to pull together after your event so you can succinctly close the chapter on that part of the campaign and move onto the next stage, but it ensures your event space is contemporary and dynamic.

Want to know more? Read how to boost tech tech cred at your next product launch here.

Remember that not everything in the infographic below will be relevant to you, but it's sage advice to have a plan, a check list and a goal in mind before you get your event off and running.

The Ultimate Social Media Event Marketing Checklist

by Marketo.
Explore more infographics like this one on the web's largest information design community - Visually.