Promoting your event on social media: where do you start? If you feel like there’s an endless list of things to do to make sure you’re on the right track and drumming up ticket sales and attendance is becoming tedious, this social media event marketing crash course is for you.
We’re going to enable you to spread excitement through your social channels, create hashtags, design tasteful event follow-up posts, and everything else you need to feel in control of your social media event promotion with a creative social media events marketing strategy.
“What’s The Big Deal? Why Do I Need to Promote My Event on Social Media?”
Simple answer: social media is your platform to an almost endless audience of all kinds of people. Social media gives you the ability to reach out to a specific audience with specific interests and advertising and promote directly to them.
In addition, expanding your events as your business grows becomes significantly easier on social media. And you can continue adjusting your audience as you need; as many times as you want. Social media puts you in control of the situation and allows you to use all sorts of features and tools to create excitement and drive more ticket sales.
Another reason you should be looking at social media events marketing for your next big shindig: social signals are a powerful force in online marketing. In fact, they’re one of the most important.
Partly it’s because social media is everywhere and everyone is using it, but it’s also because when a potential customer is researching your event, they’re going to find your social media posts and this can be ultimately what helps them decide whether or not to go through with the sale.
This puts a significant amount of pressure on your social media events promotion posts.
Today, we’re going to dig a little deeper into the what, when, why, and how behind social media events marketing and promotion and help you get a better, data-backed grasp on the ways to kill the competition when it’s time to promote your next event on social.
Ready? Let’s begin.
Most Popular Platforms for Social Media Events Promotion
Yes, there is, in fact, a “more popular” platform for social media events marketing and it happens to be Facebook.
Everyone loves Facebook. And everyone loves a good Facebook event. Facebook is easy to use, it’s fun and it’s versatile. And while it does rank for #1 in most popular platforms for promoting your event across social media, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t put effort on the other platforms.
Most Effective Platforms for Social Media Events Promotion
- Facebook: 51.9%
- LinkedIn: 26.5%
- Twitter: 12.9%
- Instagram: 6.2%
- Other: 2.8%
Data from a study by Event Manager Blog.
“How Much Money Should I Allocate for Social media Events Promotion?”
While your budget is going to vary significantly depending on the size of your event and whether or not you’re vitalizing social media events promotion for an online event, it can be helpful to hear from others about how much money they typically put into an event.
The Event Manager Blog ran a poll to find the answer to this question. The results of this poll might surprise you:
“How Much Money Do YOU Spend on Social Media Events Promotion?”
- 28% > Less Than $200
- 25% > Between $200 and $1,000
- 13% > Between $1,000 and $5,000
- 6% > Between $5,000 and $10,000
- 2% > $10,000+
Again, this varies depending on your goals, your crowd, the nature of the event and so many other little factors. However, we hope this is helpful in the preparation phase of the operation.
“How Can Social Media Events Promotion Help My Business Grow?”
This question is excellent because it allows us to dig a little deeper into the “why” behind social media events promotion.
Yes, social media events marketing is incredibly powerful for promoting your brand, but what we’re excited to share with you is that it’s so much more than that.
Among other things, social media events promotion can help you:
- Stimulate Engagement With Your Brand Online
- Stimulate Engagement at Your Event
- Boost Your Online Following
- Boost Brand Recognition
- Improve Networking Opportunities
- Gather Feedback in Real-Time From Your Event Attendees
- Directing Attendees to Relevant Content (And You Should be the One to Provide it!)
“My Boss Doesn’t Want to Spend Money on Social Media Events Promotion!”
If you feel like you want to pull your hair out working with a boss who wants you to drum up sales out of nowhere and without the aid of social media, we want to help.
While social media is quickly becoming a more popular way of promoting your work, events, services, and all sorts of incredible things there’s still a lot of skepticism. And in some cases, this skepticism is fueled by uncertainty when there aren’t immediate results because business owners and marketing directors are afraid of losing more than they might gain through social media.
Obviously, your supervisor will have a unique opinion, but we want to help you get the conversation started with a few tricks.
If your boss is afraid of negative feedback online:
It’s a sad reality, but true: people complain far more than they compliment. And if your event gives people a reason to complain, they will. The thing is, if your event is spectacular, your audience will talk about that, too.
You don’t realize it, but whether or not you choose to utilize social media, in all likelihood there’s still people complaining about your brand or event online.
The best thing you can do is be present and respond to anger with kindness, transparency, and sympathy. You’d be surprised at how many dedicated customers can come from disgruntled customers who were handled well online. In the social media marketing world, we call this good community management.
If your boss thinks social media events marketing is only for large brands:
while social media is, of course, wildly effective for large brands, we have worked with a number of companies that are a variety of different sizes, including when it comes to their own social media events promotion!
If your boss thinks it’s a “cheap” option:
While cheaper than some advertising methods, looking at social media marketing as a “cheap” alternative is the reason many opt for social media marketing over other forms of traditional marketing.
However, a lot of times the reason customers think it’s “cheap” is that they envision creating a social profile, posting once or twice a week, and then letting it stand alone.
In order to be successful, you must first put in a significant amount of effort, time, and money. Something that isn’t easy all the time. It can be an expensive thing to begin, however, the audience is vast and the opportunities endless.
If your boss thinks your audience isn’t on social media:
In order to combat this view, you’ll have to get some numbers. A careful analysis of competitors, attendee research, and an event registration form asking for social network handles is plenty to convince anyone
That being said, if you pull the information together and you find that your audience isn’t on social media, or if they are don’t tend to engage in a way that will be helpful to you, you may very well be in a niche where social is almost irrelevant to your audience. But keep an eye on it, because these things tend to change fast.
The Planning: Setting the Stage for Proper Social Media Events Promotion
Before you can start doing all the fun posting, graphic, and hashtag creation and all that fun stuff, you have to set the stage for success. A way you can easily do this is by creating a social media “policy” around your team.
If you don’t want a disaster, you need to outline the rights of your employees when it comes to social media, how social media will be used for specific things, who is in charge of updating it, etc. These rules need to continue to apply through the event and afterward. A few important places to begin would be:
“Who is Managing Your Social Media Accounts?” Make sure they have login information, a good idea of brand voice for during-the-event posting, and know under what circumstances they should be using your company VS event profiles.
“What, Who and When Can They Mention Specific Details?” Before the social media events promotion begins, make sure your team knows what they can mention about the event and when.
If you have specific rules about conduct, contacts, and anything related to company policy and posting, this would be the time to get it out in the air and make it part of your social media policy.
Five Steps to Killing Your Social Media Event Promotion Efforts
The first step to killing it when it comes to your social media events marketing is defining the specific ways social can benefit your customers and your business during the event. Can you use this event as a catalyst to drum up business or possibly drive more website traffic?
Ask yourself why this event is important and who you’re trying to reach. Why should they attend? These are all things you’re going to need to answer before you can ever begin the process of event promotion.
Step One: “What Kind of Content is Best for Promoting My Event on Social Media?”
Social media allows for a significant amount of creativity within the bounds of your social media strategy and what will appeal best to your targeted audience.
Within this wide variety of content, you can post things like:
- Blog posts
- Status updates
- Photos and videos
- Animated graphics
There are also a number of different ways to take advantage of the hype around your event. Things like live-streaming, early-bird promotions, facts, image galleries, and more are all wonderful additions to your event page and make excellent before and after posts about the event.
Step Two: Optimize Your Social Media Profiles
Before you can create an event on social media, you need to take the time to optimize your social media profiles.
The first step is to make sure your profiles are up-to-date. Are they sporting the newest version of your logo? Do the about sections need updating? If your event page still features an old itinerary or an outdated website, this is the time to make those problems right.
Focusing on one platform at a time, go through and update bios, about sections, logos, website URLs, itineraries, and anything else you spot that needs to be updated.
Step Three: Create a Social Media Content Calendar for Your Online Event
The art of creating content around your event isn’t a complicated one, but it does take some masterful creativity. Whether you decide to create a photo booth lens on Instagram or Snapchat, design a masterful event hashtag, take advantage of each holiday for a particularly fun buzz around your event or have a particular quote or post you want to share for each week leading up to your event, a content calendar is a crucial step to social media event promotion.
Remember to include creative things like memes, .gifs, humor, and plenty of emojis! (But don’t go overboard.)
Step Four: Choose a Creative Event Hashtag
We’ve had lots of fun as a team putting together hashtags for various events that we have hosted as well as promoted for our clients over the last decade or so.
When it comes to your hashtag, there are four crucial elements that will lead to success. This includes:
- Legible (No, seriously.)
If you can purpose to stay within these bounds, we can guarantee that guests will be more likely to use it as well as enjoy using it. And you’ll have better overall results.
Step Five: Tricks for Spreading Some Pre-Event Excitement
Get the party started before it ever begins with the right message on your early with some pre-event excitement on your social media channels!
Some excellent ways for doing this would be:
- Share Pictures From Your Previous Event!
If you host a recurring event, posting pictures from a previous year is an excellent way to drum up lots of pre-event excitement.
- Set Some Pictures to Music
As long as you can use relevant images and peppy music, this is a great way for people to get a glimpse of all that they’ll miss if they don’t attend! This also works great for one-time events, live-streaming events, or smaller events.
- Build Trust With Visual Testimonials
Did someone enjoy your last event? Is someone excited to be coming to this year’s event? SHARE ABOUT IT! These types of testimonies lead to more trust and greater success in an environment when we aren’t face-to-face.
- Give Your Supporters Perks
Whether it’s a special VIP ticket or swag, giving your biggest supporters and promoters a little “thanks” in physical form is a great way to encourage their loyalty, grow your audience and build more brand recognition online.
- Say “YES” to Countdowns and Teasers
If there’s anything that grows a little excitement and sets the tone for great anticipation, it’s teaser posts and countdowns. And don’t forget to make it branded!
Social media marketing is essential to any successful event marketing campaign. Hopefully, we were able to make your job as a manager or events coordinator a little easier and the path a little more straightforward.
Can we help you promote your event across social media? We’ve helped a number of businesses promote large events, webinars, and trade shows across the world with incredible results.