The Hello Bar is a simple notification bar that engages users and communicates a call to action.

Facebook

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

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?

 

1. Introduction to Social Media

This simple, charming SlideShare is a brilliant way to ease yourself gently into the world of social media marketing.

2. How to Master the Art of Social Media

Wanted to attend SXSW, but you couldn’t make it? You can now get in without a ticket! This presentation by Guy Kawasaki and Peg Fitzpatrick is from SXSW 2015. The key points from this presentation are:

  • Be valuable
  • Be clever
  • Be gracious
  • Be organized
  • Be dramatic
  • Be optimal
  • Be bold
  • Don’t be clueless
  • Be active
  • Be curious

3. Go Viral on the Social Web: The Definitive How-To Guide!

What is viral content? And how can you create it? This SlideShare reveals the ingredients of viral posts. You won’t bake the perfect cake every time you’re in the kitchen. But sometimes… magic happens!

4. A Complete Guide To The Best Times To Post On Social Media

What are the best and worst times to post on social media? TrackMaven reveal the results of their research. They cover Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Blogging and Email Marketing.

5. The World’s Biggest Social Media Team

Tourism Australia employ just three people as social media marketers – a small social media team. In this SlideShare, they reveal how they’ve multiplied their reach so they’re effectively a team of millions of people.

6. Pack a Punch with Visual Marketing

Want to know why images matter in social media, and how you use can them to engage your followers? This is the SlideShare for you.

7. What the F**K is Social Media?

Got questions about whether social media is right for your business? This is the SlideShare for you.

8. Why Social Media?

Need more convincing that social media is right for you? This blast from the past (2010) presentation shows that convincing arguments for social marketing have been around for several years.

9. The Number One Mistake Everybody Makes on Twitter

What’s the number one Twitter mistake? We’re not telling. You’ll have to watch the SlideShare to find out.

10. 6 Questions to Drive Your Social Media Strategy

Need some out-of-the-box questions to help you rethink what you’re doing on social? Mark Schaefer’s got that covered.

11. What I Wish My Kids Would Believe When I Tell Them Stuff

Successful social marketers have a unique mindset. They never stop learning.

We especially love the 3 steps on How to Pitch in this SlideShare:

  1. 10 slides
  2. 20 minutes
  3. 30 point font

12. How to Tell Your Story (the Right Way)

Marketers love stories. Why? Stories are fundamental to the human condition. More importantly, a good story grips us from start to finish. If you can tell a story, you can hold your audience’s attention.

Gary Vaynerchuk shares what it takes to be an effective storyteller in the digital age.

13. The Seven Deadly Social Media Sins

There are some social media sins your fans and followers can never forgive. Are you committing these? Watch and learn…

14. Social Media Secrets

Learn powerful techniques you never knew existed. Did you know you can add four images to a tweet? Or plan your life with secret Pinterest boards? Or track your social performance with Google ripples?

Shhhhh! Don’t tell anyone…

15. 20 Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn & Pinterest Features You Didn’t Know Existed (But Totally Should)

Want to know some more hidden social features? Here’s another SlideShare you should probably keep under wraps…

16. Fix Your Really Bad PowerPoint

Want to create your own SlideShare? In this presentation, you’ll find out the mistakes most people make with presentations – and how to avoid them.

17. How to Produce Better Content Ideas

Feeling stuck for new content ideas? Check out this SlideShare to find out how ideas happen, and to pick up techniques you can use to improve your ideas.

18. Crap. The Content Marketing Deluge

What’s the biggest threat to content marketing? Content marketing. You can’t just create any content. Your content must be mindblowing.

The problem is, most content stinks.

19. Top 10 Mistakes in Behavior Change

Getting started with social can mean a complete change to marketing mindset. Plus, you’ll have to remember to update Twitter and Facebook every day.

This SlideShare reveals how you can gently integrate new habits – including social media – into your life.

20. Social Media for Time-Strapped Entrepreneurs

Too busy to keep your Facebook page updated? Find out what you can do to have a big impact on social media in just a few minutes a day.

21. How To Make National News in 3 Easy Steps

Want your business to hit the headlines? Ryan Holiday reveals the exact techniques he used to get national media coverage.

22. How to Create the Perfect Social-Media Post

Perfect social media posts pass the “re-share” test. When people see these posts, they just have to share.

Find out the secrets to turbocharging your posts in this presentation from Guy Kawasaki.

23. The 25 Basic Styles of Blogging … And When To Use Each One

Do you the difference between Meme blogging, Piggyback blogging and Detractor blogging? We didn’t until we checked out this SlideShare. It provides a fascinating insight into the different types of content you can create for your blog.

24. Why Content Marketing Fails

Content marketing is the buzzword of our times. But just because it’s buzzing is no guarantee of success. Rand Fishkin of Moz gets into the nitty gritty of the psychology of content, and why some content works, but most content is “meh”.

25. Competitive analysis using Social Media Monitoring

Don’t be put off by the boring title! This SlideShare reveals how to use social media to spy on your competitors. The info is gold, but it’s densely packed.

26. Social Media Is..

An alternative take on the basics of social media from Lee White.

27. 36 Visual Content Creation Tools the Pros Can’t Live Without

Want to create visual content, but you’re not an illustrator or designer? Donna Moritz will get you sorted. After watching this SlideShare, you’ll start creating visual content as if you were born doing it.

28. Best LinkedIn Company Pages

A LinkedIn company page can help you stand out from the pack. Learn from the best in this presentation.

29. Most Memorable LinkedIn Posts

More great case studies from LinkedIn. Want to learn how to create engaging content from the best in the world? You can’t go far wrong starting with these examples.

30. SOCIAL MEDIA – Statistics That Will Make You Rethink Your Marketing Strategy

Did you know: Businesses that use Twitter generate twice as many leads per month? This presentation is packed to bursting with nuggets like this. If you’re in the fence about social media, this is the presentation to sway you.

31. Social Media and Marketing: Evolution or Revolution?

Is social media an evolution from traditional marketing, or a completely new way of doing things? With over 2 million views so far, this is a presentation that’s not to be missed.

32. Is Second Life a Social Network?

When you hear “social network”, you probably think of Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, right? But social is actually WAY bigger than that. If you’d like to do some unconventional thinking about what makes up a social network, this presentation is a great place to get started.

33. The Sophisticated Marketer’s Guide to LinkedIn

One in three professionals on the planet uses LinkedIn. If you’re missing out, this presentation is a brilliant way of getting started.

34. How to Monitor Social Media in 10 Minutes a Day

In ten minutes you can run a mile, eat a snack, or drink a mug of coffee. You can also stay on top of your social accounts. HubSpot shows you how.

35. 36 Content Marketers Who Rock

Want to learn content marketing from the very best? This SlideShare profiles some of the greatest content creators who share their top tips for creating buzzworthy content.

36. Steve Jobs On Marketing: 8 Lessons Every Marketer Must Learn

Pearls of marketing wisdom from one of the greatest minds of our era. Here’s one of our favorites: “Innovation is saying no to a thousand things”

37. The 4 Most Powerful Facebook Advertising Tools Marketers Aren’t Using

Are you missing out on the power of Facebook ads? If you’ve ever wondered what Facebook ads could bring to your business, this is the presentation for you.

38. How to Thrive: A Redefinition of Success

Okay, this one isn’t about social marketing. But it’s an important reminder that life’s about more than going viral. So if you’re ever feeling stressed by social (we’ve all been there!), take a break with this.

39. The Paradox of Exceptional Marketing

Ever wondered why we’re on earth? Or what the Fermi paradox is all about? Or what any of this has got to do with marketing? If so – or if you just like a pinch of crazy to spice up your day – you’ll love this presentation.

40. Enterprise Winning: Big Companies Getting Value from Enterprise Social

We often talk about the benefits of social to small businesses. But how can social be of use to large enterprises? This presentation offers some interesting case studies of big businesses going social.

41. IBM’s Point of View on Social Business

“Social business starts when you put people at the center”. This SlideShare contains some fascinating insights. But IBM – you really need to work on your headlines!

42. Social Content Marketing with SlideShare

SlideShare means business. It’s a brilliant social marketing platform in and of itself. This presentation shares what’s possible with SlideShare, with a focus on SEO, lead generation and integration with other networks such as Facebook and LinkedIn.

43. Building A Content Marketing Strategy

“Wandering works in fairy tales. But it’s disastrous when it comes to lead management.” Without a coherent strategy, your content marketing efforts are likely to fall flat. Save yourself from wandering down the rabbit hole by watching this presentation.

44. 23 Simple Methods to Promote Your Business for Free

Need to make a splash on a budget? Social media is a great place to start. But if you need results sooner, this SlideShare will help you conjure up some fresh marketing ideas.

45. How Growth Hacking Rewrote Marketing’s Best Practices

Growth hacking is all the rage, because it’s a really effective way of growing a business. It’s also ideal for creating viral content. This presentation shows you the basics of Growth Hacking, so you can start to adopt a growth hacker’s mindset.

46. 120 Awesome Marketing Stats, Charts and Graphs

We love a good chart, and this presentation is bursting with them. If you’re into social media metrics, this presentation will make you one happy gal (or guy).

47. The Who, What, Where, When, And Why Of Social Media Lead Generation

What’s one of the main reasons businesses use social media? To find new customers. This presentation gets to the heart of the issue by showing you how social media can help generate leads for your business.

48. 20 Signs You’re Probably Not Working For a Social Business

You might have a Twitter account. But that doesn’t mean you’ve got a social business. Find out whether your business really is social by checking it against the benchmarks in this SlideShare.

49. Get People to Open your Emails

Email is one of the most powerful tools in the marketer’s toolbox. It may be old school, but it’s here to stay.

How can you make sure your emails are opened? Find out in this SlideShare presentation.

50. 50 Random Twitter Rips for Business

These Twitter tips might be random, but they’re also highly effective. Every one is gold, and we’re sure you’ll find at least one you’ve never read before (we found several!).

Get Noticed on Social Media

This is a guest post by Stephen Moyers of SPINX Digital Agency.

Social media is the new frontier of marketing. The relative youth of the platform means that it’s ripe with potential and exploration, but as there are few proven paths to success, pursuing it can also be a frustrating endeavor. So why use it at all?

According to a study by Shareaholic that followed 300,000 websites for over 4 months, social media referrals now account for 30% of sites’ overall traffic.

While there was no one single, effective social strategy identified in the study, clearly something is working. Or, more accurately, a combination of somethings.

Most businesses know that posting regularly across their Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts is important. And by now, the people tasked with managing those accounts understand that there are basic tactics for driving engagement and increasing sales.

Unless, of course, those tactics don’t apply to you.

The key to using social media marketing effectively is to try a variety of posts to see what sticks. Sure, generally speaking, visual content works well, as does responding to individuals through comments, tweets, etc.

But if you’re looking to expand your arsenal, shake up your strategy, or are trying to replace old, failing tactics, check out some of these creative ways to build an audience in social media.

 

1. Tailor content to the platform

Many businesses make the mistake of posting the same content on all of their social media pages. If your company just hasn’t allotted enough time to create or manage a campaign, then it’s understandable. However, this tactic probably isn’t going to get you much overall traction. In fact, it may actually be a waste of time.

Every channel has its own particular demographic that expects specific types of posts. If you want to increase engagement, make sure your Pinterest pins aren’t all duplicates of your Facebook content. The posts should reflect the medium.

Pizza Hut is well-known for its humorous and effective social media pages. While some of the content overlaps, the company does a good job of using Facebook for visual and promotional posts, and Twitter for short, funny thoughts on pizza.

 

Pizza Hut

 

2. Re-purpose old content

Evergreen content can be a goldmine for social media. If you have a blog post from a year ago that scored particularly well with users and wasn’t topical, make a few tweaks or update the context and post about it again. Or, if the subject is suddenly relevant to a current trending topic, re-post and re-frame it.

Re-purposing not only adds to your well of content, it saves time. Making a few quick changes or simply linking to it through a new Facebook post consumes a much smaller chunk of your day than writing an entirely new blog.

 

3. Try longer posts

The common wisdom about social media is to keep your posts short. This isn’t a bad idea as many successful posts typically consist of limited characters. However, each social network is different, and with the exception of Twitter, you can experiment with your post lengths to drive engagement.

Typically, B2Bs can be expected to have a little more success in this realm. Their audiences generally are more interested in information than, say, a cat video. Social networks like LinkedIn and Google Plus are ideal for auditioning long-form messages to your audience.

G+ user and consultant, Mike Alton, published a massive (at least by social media standards) post on how to create an ideal LinkedIn profile – with great success. The post earned over 100 +1’s and shares, and generated dozens of comments.

 

Google+

 

4. Throw a curveball to your audience

It’s important to keep a consistent brand voice in your social media profiles. Varying it up too much can reflect poorly on you, or even worse – confuse users and followers about who you are and what you represent.

However, the important caveat here is that, for some brands, spontaneity is an important value as well. If you post the same kind of content over and over, it becomes routine and boring. People are more apt to tune you out.

Netflix has recently become an example of how to unexpectedly vary up a social presence with great results. Rather than following the standard procedure for dealing with a customer, a service rep suddenly started communicating with a frustrated user as if they were in separate space stations.

The conversation eventually went viral on Reddit.

 

Netflix

 

5. Change up the format

Along the lines of providing unexpected content for your users, you should switch up the format once in a while. The typical structure is copy followed by a link, hashtag or image, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Indeed, people are more likely to notice if you present content in a unique way. Most networks allow you to tweak the format, and customize the look of your post.

 

Tweet

 

Does this provide more value to your users? Does the alternate format mean that the content contains greater importance than usual? No. But in the world of social media marketing when posts are more often scanned than read, making this small change can make your post more attention-grabbing.

 

6. Focus on inbound traffic

According to Hubspot, social media has a 100% higher lead-to-close rate than outbound marketing. This statistic highlights one important thing to remember: social media is a great way to drive traffic to your website.

That doesn’t mean that every single post should be self-promotional. Always look to provide value to your followers by including posts that link to other profiles / articles. However, everything you create should be relevant to your brand either indirectly, or through direct calls to action that encourage people to visit your website.

Not only will inbound traffic help improve your chances of securing leads and sales, it’ll boost your SEO rank as well. Google factors social signals (i.e., clicks, shares, etc.) when determining the popularity and legitimacy of your website. It’s yet another reason to create compelling inbound traffic.

 

7. Provide structure for your replies

Asking questions or polling your audience can be an effective way to increase participation, as long as you provide some structure for people to follow. Tossing out an open-ended question might inspire people, but if you ask something like “Happy Friday! What are your plans this weekend?”, most users will just keep scrolling past your post, uninterested.

Instead, get specific about your question and your desired response. It almost becomes more of a game that way. You can try fill-in-the-blank queries, or compare 2 options, and ask people to state their preference by Liking for one, Sharing for another.

Target does a good job of utilizing this tactic with success.

 

Target

 

8. Stand out from the crowd – stay positive

For all of social media’s great potential, it’s also an open forum for jerks to criticize people and brands behind a cloak of anonymity. But at this point, negativity has almost become cliché online.

You can separate yourself from the herd and add some pleasant optimism to people’s days by only posting positive content. In fact, according to one study, brands that posted happier tweets gained more followers than those who posted only about themselves, used swear words, or employed other neutral or negative tones.

9. Turn mistakes into opportunities

At some point in your social media game, you’re probably going to make a mistake. Whether it’s a poorly worded tweet, a not entirely appropriate image, or you forget to sign out of your company account before posting to your private account, blunders are pretty much inevitable.

The good news is that there’s most likely an opportunity to be found here. Your audience is human and appreciates that no one is perfect. If possible, find the humor in the situation and make it work for you. Apologize if necessary and humble yourself with a self-deprecating joke. It will undoubtedly endear the brand to your followers.

Stephen Moyers is an active tech-savvy blogger who loves to write about online marketing, social media marketing, and various technology topics. He is currently associated with Los Angeles based SPINX Digital Agency, which provides a range of digital services like social media marketing, website design & development and many more. You can follow Stephen on Twitter @StephenMoyers.