Whether your business is attending a one day exhibition or a week-long conference, social media can be used to really take advantage of live events. Whether it’s B2B or consumer focussed, there are always opportunities to build your brand and social media is essential for boosting online presence, and creating that bridge between virtual and reality.
Printdesigns has put together this simply step by step guide to getting social media right before, during and after your event.
The months or weeks before your event are critical for promotion, and you should use all means possible (every social media channel) to get the word out to your followers, customers and beyond. It is a good idea to decide on an event specific hashtag for Twitter and set up an event page on Facebook. The key is to keep talking about the event without it getting boring – this can be quite challenging. Be creative and think of new things to mention about the event, share other exhibitioner’s pages, as people to share information for a reward, promote a competition you’ll be running on the day. Think about why people would want to come or should come to the event, and start creating posts from that.
Studies have shown that on average people are spending three hours a day on social media. Smartphones allow users to check all of their accounts frequently, and people do so on the move to ‘check in’ on Facebook or tag places and people on Twitter. Images of what people get up to are also shared daily on Instagram, so all of these platforms are essential for building a buzz about the event you are at.
Social media can be the difference between a fun, engaging event and a flat, boring flop. Real time social media interaction can bring more visitors to your stand or easily increase followers and likes on the social media channels as people search for posts related to the event. It’s also a good idea to encourage people to Tweet or post images while at the event – perhaps have a special offer for people who share your profile or page or check in, etc.
Social media means that now, your live event doesn’t have to be over once the doors are closed and the last visitors have left the building. You can keep the buzz and conversation going for days later, with news from the event and posts about what was popular/what you have learnt etc. You can also contact new followers or those who you met in person on social media to thank them for the follow, in addition to the follow up emails you will be conducting. (We hope you have a follow up procedure in place!)
So there you have it – the easy way to make sure you social media channels are fully promotional before, during and after the big day. These tips go hand in hand with all of the other real life interaction, marketing tools and promotional giveaways which you would have used in conjunction with social media at the event. Stay tuned on the Printdesigns blog for more exhibition and trade show tips!