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promote event social media

Want to draw a crowd to your event or conference?

Social media is a brilliant tool for building up the buzz around your event, so your venue will be packed to overflowing.

Here’s what you can do to draw a crowd…

Create an Event Hashtag

If you only do one thing to promote your event on social media, make it this. An event hashtag is a fantastic way to subtly spread the word about your event.

  • Be sure to tell all delegates about the hashtag as soon as they sign up to attend. You want people to start sharing the hashtag as early as possible, as that gets the word out and builds anticipation.
  • An effective event hashtag is short, so delegates can easily remember it, and unique so that tweets about your event don’t get lost amidst the noise. #sxsw is a brilliant example of a hashtag.
  • Make sure that delegates use the hashtag during the event when they share any event updates with their followers. More on that in a moment.
  • It’s a good idea to have a new hashtag each year to generate extra buzz and excitement.

Retweet Any Event Mentions

Anytime your event gets tweeted about (you are listening for mentions, aren’t you?), retweet it to your follows.

Why? Because positive mentions are a form of social proof. You’re allowing other people to “sell” your event on your behalf, which is a much more powerful way of selling.

What’s more, it’s an excellent way to engage your delegates, as being retweeted always feels good.

Crowdsource the Organising

Setting up an event takes a lot of energy and creativity. You’ll have to come up with a theme and workshop ideas, then tap your network for potential speakers.

What if there was a better way of organising events, that also helped with promotion?

That’s where crowdsourcing comes in. You can involve your social media followers in organising your event by:

  • Asking them to suggest event themes.
  • Listening to their concerns and questions. If your event addresses these, then you’re onto a winner.
  • Asking them to propose speakers and workshop leaders they’d like.

Once you’ve got ideas from your audience, create a shortlist. Then get your followers to vote on their favourite.

This approach means that people will be invested in your conference at a really early stage. People who help you come up with ideas will be really excited to attend your event. They’ll probably want to help with event promotion too.

Plus, you’ll get people talking about your event. When you get people to suggest themes, ask them to include the event hashtag. That means more eyeballs on your event, which is good news when it comes to attracting delegates.

Write an Event Blog

When blogs are useful, they attract an audience. They pull people in. As such, blogs are a form of marketing.

Blogs dovetail perfectly with conferences. Why? Because both blogs and conferences are about sharing useful information. The more useful a blog is, the more readers it will attract. The more useful a conference is, the bigger the audience of delegates who’ll attend.

Creating an event blogs means you can demonstrate the value of your event all year round. And you don’t have to do all the work yourself. It’s a good idea to ask conference speakers to contribute to a blog. You can even ask delegates if they’d like to have their say on your blog.

Remember, your conference blog isn’t about sharing the joys and woes of organising a conference. The content on your blog should reflect the topics your event speakers will be talking about.

Have a Tweet Display In Conference Rooms

Want to get people talking? Conferences are great for sharing opinions. So why not get delegates to share their thoughts publicly?

Put up a screen in every venue at your conference. Let delegates know that you’ll display any tweets with the conference hashtag.

Tools you can use for this include:

Having a tweet screen encourages people to share their thoughts, generates discussion, and acts as a promotional tool.

Broadcast Your Event to the World

Tools such as Google Hangouts On Air make it super easy to share a live video feed of your event.

Of course you don’t want to broadcast your whole event, as that’s unfair to delegates who paid for tickets. But it’s a good idea to share one or two keynote speeches.

As a bonus, recording video of your event allows you to create a highlights video for promoting next year’s event.

(Still not convinced broadcasting your event is a good idea? Check out TED. If that doesn’t convince you, then you’re a lost cause.)

Take Photos of Delegates – and Tag Them

Social media is increasingly becoming all about visuals. That means if you want to promote your event on social media, you must have pictures.

The easiest way to get pictures is to take photographs at your event. Appoint an event photographer to take as many photos as possible. Then upload them to social media, and if you can, tag the people in the photographs.

Quote ALL Quotables Your Speakers Share

Whenever a speaker or workshop leader at your event says something that’s worth sharing, share it!

Event better, ask the speaker if you can use their photograph. Then create a meme-style image, with the quote overlaid on their photo.

Decide on the Content You’ll Create From the Event

We’ve already looked at creating a promotional video from footage of your event, and using photos to share on social media. But there’s way more content you can get out of an event.

  • Conducting a live interview? Record it and turn it into a podcast.
  • Got a Q&A session? Take notes on all the questions asked. This is a excellent source of content ideas.
  • Get a transcript of the keynote speech, and ask the speaker if you can publish it to your blog.
  • We’ve already mentioned collecting quotes from your event. Why not combine them into a mega-post for your blog?

Over to You

Have you used social media to promote a business event? What worked well for you? Did you use any tactics that we missed in this article?

Blogging About Products

You have a blog. You write regularly, and people engage with your posts.

Yet, for some reason it’s not translating to sales.

Do you talk about your products and services on your blog?

Because it’s easy to forget to do that.

Everyone is focusing on audience engagement, Facebook shares, likes, and email subscriptions. But without regularly reminding your readers that you have stuff they can buy, your hard blogging efforts may not translate into more money coming in.

Here are 6 strategies for writing about your products, complete with templates…

Write about what inspired you to create what you’re offering

Also known as: showing people behind the scenes of your business. How did you come up with that information product/service package?

I had answered that particular question 5 times already that week. That’s how I realised: people don’t really understand this…

Write about a client’s experience (with their permission)

Make it clear that you are writing about someone who came to you for help.

My client had been struggling with [topic] for quite some time. They had tried [thing] and [thing] but nothing had worked. When they came to see me, I suggested [thing]. Here’s what [thing] looks like, and why you need to try it.

Answer a client’s question

Again, make it clear that one of your clients asked the question. Answering questions will also give you instant expert status.

I was working with [client] trying to solve [problem], when they asked me: ‘how exactly do you achieve [thing]?’ Ah, yes. Great question.

Explain to people how they can use your product

Also known as fashion’s Do’s and Don’t’s.

A client told me that they use my [product] whenever they find themselves in [situation]. I thought it was fascinating because you while you don’t want to use my [product] for [situation] you can definitely use it for [situation].

Write about your most popular product

Tell people it’s your most popular product, and explain to them why you think that is.

[Product] is by far the most popular product in my shop. At first I was surprised, but then I realised that it really resonates with people because [reason].

Write an excerpt of an information product and expand on the concept

Tell people they can find more about this in the product you sell.

I have a lot to say on [concept], which is why I wrote [information product]. But here’s a quick overview.

You don’t always have to review your product in a positive light. Honest constructive self-criticism works too. Just don’t forget to add a simple mention to your clients and how your product is making their lives better.

Internet of Things

Has the internet changed your life?

As you’re reading this, I’d bet more than just my pocket money that it has.

When you need to find your way in a new city, do you buy a new street map of that city? Or do you pull up Google maps on your phone?

Arranging to meet up with friends. Do you call them on their home phone? Or do you leave them a Facebook message?

What about the latest news stories? There’s no more waiting for the next time the news shows on TV. Instead, you can tune into a 24 hour news channel on your smartphone. Or simply follow those in the know on Twitter.

For most of us, the Internet is embedded in our lives. It’s hard to imagine a world without it.

Going forward, the Internet will become even more vital to our day-to-day living. It won’t only be your smartphone that’s connected to cyberspace. Your TV, your vacuum cleaner, your toaster, the heating system in your home, even your clothes. All will be hooked into the world wide web.

In some ways, it’s a terrifying possibility. The Internet will know more about you than you know about yourself. But wouldn’t it be great to have your dinner freshly cooked at the very moment you realize that you’re hungry?

With the internet tracking your every move, that’s not outside the realms of possibility.

For the science fiction view of what’s going to happen, check out The Beam by Sean Platt and Johnny Truant. It’s a rip-roaring read by two incredible writers. And their vision of where the internet is headed will blow your mind.

But what about the here and now?

Here’s how the Internet will change your life in the very near future.

1. Your Car Will Book Itself In For Maintenance (And Drive Itself to the Mechanic)

Cars that self-diagnose their faults have been around for a couple of decades – even if it is only mechanics who can access the computer systems.

It won’t be long before cars hooked up to the internet will check your calendar against your mechanic’s calendar, and suggest a time for servicing.

Even more surreal: Self-driving cars are already on the road. It won’t be too many years before they go mass market.

Imagine this: your car will book itself in for a maintenance check, then make its own way to your mechanic. All at a time when it knows you won’t be driving.

Now that’s what I call a real smart car.

2. Your Pacemaker Will Dial 911

Have you been fitted with a pacemaker to regulate your heartbeat? That in itself is a miracle of technology.

But it won’t be long before even your pacemaker can hook itself into the world wide web.

Let’s say you’re driving, and you suffer a heart attack. That’s a potentially fatal situation not just for you, but also for the drivers around you.

Your smart pacemaker immediately jumps into action. It drops a message to your car, telling your car to do three things:

  1. Pull over safely to the side of the road.
  2. Determine your location.
  3. Raise the alarm with the nearest emergency room.

3. Your Year-Round Sweater Will Keep You Warm (or Cool)

Clothes with built in nanotechnology can warm up or cool down “at the press of a button”.

If you really wanted to, you could wear the same outfit all year round. Just like Steve Jobs.

And when clothes with nanotechnology get smart, there will be no need for the button. The clothes will monitor your temperature, and the ambient temperature, and adjust themselves accordingly.

Smart clothes will also track your health and fitness – like Fitbit and Jawbone wristbands do now, but in a more advanced way. And if you need a checkup with your doctor, your clothes will schedule that for you.

4. Your Medicine Cabinet Will Order the Drugs You Need

Running low on a prescription drug? RX bottles are set to come with built in microchips, so the medicine you need will automatically be ordered for you.

These smart RX bottles will also mean you doctor can monitor whether you’re taking your medicine as you’re supposed to.

5. Your Home Will Take a Goldilocks Approach to Heating and AirCon

Remember the story of Goldilocks and the three bears? She liked her porridge not too cold, nor too hot, but just right.

Is your home always as cool (or as warm) as you’d like it to be?

With smart heating, your home will be just the right temperature. Your home will know when you’re out, so the heating can be turned low (or off). And it will know when you’re on your way home, so it will warm up for your return. Just the temperature you like it.

That means less wasted energy, and more comfort.

The same is true of lighting. Smart sensors will mean that lighting only comes on when you’re in the house, and turns off when you leave. What’s more, your lights will brighten or dim based on the level of natural light coming through your windows.

6. Even Sports Matches Will Be Enjoyable

Love watching sports, but hate the hustle of match day? There’s the fighting for a space to park your car, then getting to the stadium onto to realize you forgot your tickets. Then when you’re inside, finding your way to your set through the crowds.

The Internet of things will change all that, as Lee Odess explains:

The personalized ballpark experience could involve your connected device, the iPhone in your pocket, notifying the arena of your arrival while at the same time sending a list of available parking spaces to your phone and directing you to the closest one. When entering through the ticketing gate, your identity and tickets would be authenticated without so much as taking your phone out of your pocket. Once in the stadium, the device would map out the best route to your seats, taking into consideration factors like foot traffic, potential hazards (if you’re allergic to peanuts, it will avoid passing any peanut vendors) and your favorite food stalls. By the time you get to your seat, your experience will have been custom tailored to you and your needs.

The Internet of Things is set to change the world. What changes are you most looking forward to?