18 Proven Tactics to Become an Event Social Media Superhero
Inspired by the research, tips and strategies explored in detail in the Social Media eBook I have created a quick fire list for how to be a social media superhero for your organisation and events!
For more detailed strategy and approaches join the 10,920 Event Professionals that have already downloaded the eBook!
1. Content is King
Ensure that you provide quality content which appeals to your audience. Provide unique and exclusive content such as back stage pictures, teasers and interviews. Give them a reason to follow and engage.
2. Little and Often
Ensure you post regularly and have an active account. It sends out the wrong messages and discourages people from following/liking/connecting with you if your channel is silent or shows irregular activity.
If you work to build a community for your annual event ensure that you continue to post all year round too, don’t commit the ultimate sin and only pay attention to it around your approaching event date to try to stimulate sales.
3. Mix it Up
Strive to provide information in a variety of formats – pictures, blog posts, questions, slideshare, video, polls, memes, etc. Visual content always has a much higher engagement and click through rate.
Social media is a fantastic listening tool and provides a wealth of information for you. Take advantage of the fantastic opportunity to listen what people are saying about your brand and events and find out what makes them tick. Tap into popular hashtags and chats, communities, etc to keep ahead of trends.
Never forget that social media is about the conversation and cultivating relationships. Closely monitor and strive to improve your engagement levels.
Who are the top influencers in your event niche? Cultivate a relationship with them. This may even help you determine the speakers or performers for your next event. Social media top influencers getting involved and endorsing your event to their networks can result in a spike of interest and ticket sales.
We have even bypassed the gatekeepers and traditional methods of approaching a speaker and occasionally reached out directly to some top level speakers via the power of Twitter in this modern world!
Think about how you can stand out from the masses. How do you cut through the noise and get noticed? Research what your competitors are doing via with their social media channels and differentiate and do it better than them!
7. Respond Quickly
Social Media is active 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and it is important that you can respond swiftly. Event attendees will often expect a response within the hour. This is particularly important if you encounter any negativity – ensure that you can react promptly and resolve the issue and/or take it offline.
Set up notifications so you are aware of direct mentions and messages and in the best position to respond quickly.
Ensure you have the relevant apps on your mobile device so you can check and respond to social media channels in any free moment, even when away from the office
8. Know Your Audience
Spend time understanding your audience and working out their personas as this will help you to plan your campaigns more accurately and effectively. Make sure you are on the right platforms that your customers are on.
Understand the reasons why your audience engages with social media. This post gives further background reading: The Social Attendee: The Psychology behind Social Media for Events.
9. Quality vs. Quantity
Cultivate quality followers. It is best to have 100 engaged and loyal followers rather than thousands of silent or irrelevant followers. Remember that with social media:
“Numbers are vanity, interaction is sanity”
It is better to focus on doing one or two networks really well rather than several networks badly. The Social Media Cards within the eBook give useful tips and etiquette for the main social media networks, such as how they are used, how regularly you should post, what to avoid, what the optimal post/update should look like and ideal uses and engagement.
If you do use more than one network try to ensure that your handles and profiles are standard to ensure you can be found easily via a search.
If you are on several channels you should ideally have a different approach to each social network, rather than posting the same content. Give people a reason to connect with you on more than one channel if they so wish.
11. Don’t Broadcast
Resist the temptation to broadcast and sell. This is not engagement, this is a sure-fire way to lose your audience. On Twitter for example if you need to promote limit it to one ‘salesy’ tweet per 8 or 9 quality and informative tweets.
12. Team Effort
Have a team of people trained and confident in terms of using social media for your business and events.
Engaging on social media is publically portraying your brand. It is an important job and so ensure you have the right people for the job. Question if you really want to leave this to the office junior?
There is evidence that your CEO should be tweeting. Various surveys have found that customers trust a company more if their Chief Executive actively engages with social media and this sets the tone for the organisation.
13. Social Event Tech
Does your event tech encourage interaction and engagement with social media?
Even better does your app log in and connect via the attendees social media profile and give them the option to import their details directly to create their event profile easily?
14. Measure and Monitor
Think carefully about how your success will be measured. What do you want to achieve? What measurements will determine whether you have been successful? What tools will help you to measure this?
Monitor what works and what doesn’t, test new things and then spend time on the things that help you achieve your objectives and bring rewards and forget about the things that aren’t showing results.
Ensure social media is incorporated into your event right from the start, rather than an afterthought or late addition. Hashtags are not just used on Twitter, they are also found on Instagram, Google Plus and Facebook. Understandably people expect an event hashtag to be set and utilised right from the registration stage of the event.
Conversations and mentions will still happen so it is best to encourage these conversations to be easily catalogued via a hashtag to make them easier to monitor, follow and engage with, rather than trying to find and respond to fragmented conversations.
Think of ways to communicate the hashtag clearly via the pre event marketing and at the live event via the branding and in all the key places such as on the big screens, signage and messaging.
16. Integrate Social Media Firmly into your Event
Ensure you have a dedicated and active social media team in place on site at the event and that they have access to reliable internet (preferably a wired connection or dedicated wifi bandwidth), power supply and also access to the people, information and resources they need to do their job in a fast-moving live event environment.
Encourage maximum social media activity in the lead up to and on the day of the event so that attendees are really inspired to join the conversation and contribute. Can you get your event trending on Twitter for maximum visibility outside of the event rooms?
17. Make it Fun!
Twitter leaderboards, robots that blow bubbles the more Tweets that are sent, unlocking rewards when keywords are mentioned using the hashtag and photobooths that can share pictures to social networks are all ideas we have used and love in our events.
How are you rewarding the top and most active influencers in your community? At TechFest 2014 the Event Organiser announced that the top tweeters at the event should come for free to the next year’s event as they were that valuable to him. Perhaps this approach is something that will become more and more common going forward?
There are lots of things to think about to become a social media superhero but the superpowers it can give you can work wonders for your next events!
These are my 18 top tips and takeaways for how to ensure you are a social media superhero. What other pointers would you add to the list?
For detailed research, statistics and strategies for using Social Media effectively for your events download the free Event Manager Blog eBook: Social Media and Events.