Using Social Effectively to Promote Your Event

Image: TeerawatWinyarat / iStock / Getty Images Plus

You have an event coming up. Your talent is booked, your event landing page is created, and you have tickets set up. Now, you need to get those tickets sold and get customers through your door. That’s where marketing and advertising comes in.

I oftentimes see venues and events blindly posting information with no true strategy. They’re handing out flyers, vaguely posting messages, and doing promotions to one mass audience without any tracking measures in place. And it’s not surprising: In the past, marketing and advertising was a one-way street of communication, with businesses blasting messages and hoping someone hears it. It was nearly impossible to track results, and didn’t foster interaction with customers. But that doesn’t have to be the case anymore.

Today, you’re able to interact with your guests and have a two-way street of communication on social channels. You’re also able to track nearly every marketing effort to understand what’s bringing in the most guests and the biggest spenders. Not only does this allow for more engagement and more conversion, but it also allows you to easily see your ROI of your marketing efforts.

Social channels are one of the highest sources of conversion for most events. That’s because you’re able to target your audience on the channels they spend the most time on. You’re also able to boost content to expand your target audience reach, all at a fraction of traditional marketing channels and with the advantage of tracking its results. Here’s how to use social to get an even bigger return on your next event.

 

1.  Update profile content.

It’s imperative to have an online presence that matches the style of your offline presence. Your social channels should be updated to reflect the theme of your event. Change your profile pictures and cover photos on your social channels to coincide with your event images. On Facebook, add an events section on your profile page that gives full information about your event. When people click on either “Interested” or “Going” buttons on your event page, it shows in their newsfeed and reaches their audience organically, driving up awareness and social reassurance. You should also integrate your ticketing page into your Facebook fan page for people to buy tickets directly through social. Keeping it all consistent between your website, social channels, and venue will strengthen your presence and increase awareness.

 

2. Leverage organic tactics.

Customers now make purchasing decisions on multiple platforms – including social – and they expect you to be there. Make sure you’re contributing to the discussion with regular organic posts about your event, and don’t forget to use trackable links so you know which posts are working. Tease that you have an announcement before you release the event details. Regularly provide content and updates surrounding the events. Do contests or ticket giveaways to build engagement and interaction. If you’re posting on Facebook and you have your Facebook event page set up, direct your posts to your Facebook event page so your audience continues to engage with you on your channel. And always remember to reply to your audience when they have questions or comments – that’s what social is all about after all, and it helps you to build your momentum. Nurturing your community and having conversations within your posts is just as important as getting your post out there in the first place.

 

3. Invest in your marketing.

Paid social marketing can be a lucrative investment for your event. It’s what allows you to reach a broader audience than your current fan base, and with today’s tools, you’re able to make sure you target your ad specifically to the target personas that make sense for your event. And with many social channels, like Facebook, your audience is able to share your sponsored content with their followers, resulting in organic engagement from your paid sponsored post. And it’s always a win when your organic engagement is higher than your paid engagement. This level of reach is what builds prosperity with your audience. People look for social reassurance to see if their friends are going to the same events; that’s what builds your engagement and what leads to conversions. Again, make sure you’re tracking your paid efforts with your affiliate links, and always monitor your campaign results in your ads manager platform. This will allow you to understand your level of investment in your marketing efforts. It’s no longer about budgeting for paid social ads; it’s about getting an even bigger return with conversions.

 

4. Continue using social during the event.

Your engagement on social media shouldn’t be over once the day of the event hits. This is an even bigger opportunity to get your attendees involved and have them broadcast your event to their followers. This helps with your future brand awareness and with getting more people tuned in to the events that you’re doing. Have someone on staff live streaming your events. Invite your attendees to do the same or to post with an event hashtag. Use Snapchat to engage with your audience. Better yet, invest in Snapchat filters and stickers that are custom to your event for your attendees to use on their snaps. It’s these little things that keep your promotions going, and keep people engaged even after your event.