9 Things to Consider When Creating an Event Social Media Plan
Our world is saturated with social media, and taking advantage of massive networks like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter is virtually required to effectively publicize any event. Using eye-catching images, snappy hashtags, and clever sharing, you can generate huge buzz and ensure that your event is a stunning and memorable success. But in order to do so strategically, it’s crucial to put together an event social media plan. To put it simply, it’s a systematic schedule for what you’re going to post and share on various social media sites, as well as when you’re planning to do it.
You decide all of this many weeks in advance — this way, you’re way less likely to forget any key steps as the date of your event approaches. Keep reading for a list of nine vital factors to account for as you’re creating your event social media plan.
1. Is your prospective event venue marketable?
In order to make your event as appealing as possible both in advance on social media and for in-person guests, you’ll need to pick the right venue: somewhere cool, unique, and perfectly suited to your audience. Peerspace is the ideal resource to use to locate your event space. As the internet’s largest marketplace for venues, it’s most event planners’ go-to site to find locations for corporate events, including launch parties, meetings, off-sites, retreats, brainstorming sessions, and more.
2. Which social networks will you use?
As part of your event social media plan, be sure to thoughtfully consider which social networks will be most effective. This depends on your intended audience and industry, as well as the kind of event you’re holding. For instance, a primarily professional, business-related event (particularly B2B-oriented) should take advantage of LinkedIn, but you won’t find many hip, youthful audiences here like you might on Twitter.
And Instagram is especially great if your content centers around beautiful or interesting images — say, if you’re promoting an art gallery opening or the launch of a new, aesthetically-pleasing product. Facebook is the largest social networking site in the world, so it’s probably a good bet for the majority of events. Consider what audience you’re hoping to draw and plan accordingly. This quiz from Eventbrite can help you decide what platforms to focus on.
3. How are your profiles looking?
Promoting events on social media isn’t just about the posts themselves! Whatever page you’re posting on, you want to make sure to start out with the best possible profile. Often, people will click on the page that’s posting an event to learn more about it — so having a professional-looking profile may make or break your overall image.
You should especially focus on having a concise, eye-catching bio that includes any relevant link(s), as well as pictures that are high-resolution and formatted properly for whichever site you’re using (for instance, you don’t want your page’s Facebook profile picture to be stretched or your cover photo to be cut off unattractively). For the sake of thoroughness, be sure to check how things look on mobile phones as well as tablets, as some sites may crop images differently, etc.
4. Have you considered paid Facebook ads?
One of the greatest things about social media is the fact that for the most part, it’s free. But Facebook ads can be the difference between only a small percentage of your followers seeing your posts and lots of engagement on your Facebook event, for instance. To learn more, check out Adweek’s guide to Facebook advertising for events.
5. Have you chosen the right hashtag?
Taking advantage of hashtags should be an integral part of your event social media plan. Numerous platforms support hashtags: Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, YouTube, Tumblr, and more. You’ll want to unite the powers of all of these sites (so to speak) by deciding on a hashtag that you’ll use across the board. Most importantly, it needs to be one that hasn’t been used extensively in the past; this way, your event becomes the primary focus when anyone searches for that hashtag.
In addition to being distinctive, it should be as short as possible — many sites have word count limits and people are more likely to take the time to type in a shorter phrase. Your event’s hashtag should also be easy to remember and to spell. That’s a lot of criteria, but if you take some time to brainstorm, it shouldn’t be too tough to decide on a quick and memorable phrase that’ll sum up your event.
6. How can you incorporate content from past events in your current advertising?
If you’ve held past events that are similar (or even better, previous iterations of an ongoing event), you can use photos, videos, quotations, attendee testimonials, and other content from those events to give followers a realistic and convincing idea of what this year’s event will be like. It’s a great idea to make use of this wealth of existing content by giving it a new spin.
7. Can your participants help promote the event?
Particularly if you’re involving influencers, you’ll want to enlist their influence via their huge social media following to help promote your event. Likewise, you can tag anyone who’s speaking at the event in your postings, and then ask them to post about it so their existing followers know about the event. Anyone who’s already interested in a particular speaker enough to follow them is going to be more likely to come to an event to see them.
8. Will your event be Instagram-worthy?
One of the greatest ways to get more publicity for your event once it’s happened: make it visually appealing so that attendees will automatically want to brighten up their Instagram and other social media feeds with images from the event. This means having your event be as aesthetically pleasing as possible — that’s heavily dependent on finding the right venue, so check out Peerspace to locate unique and beautiful spaces in your city.
For instance, imagine how many photos people will take if your rooftop party includes a great view of the city skyline! Or, if there’s a celebrity in attendance, people will definitely want to get selfies with them. You can also incorporate something like a photo booth (with event branding) or other backdrops that’ll make guests want to share photos. The sky’s the limit, so be creative.
9. Do you know how to live-tweet your event?
Even if everyone you’ve invited can’t make it to the event itself, it can still be a source of useful and eye-catching content for your brand or organization’s social media profiles. And Twitter may be best-known for this, as it’s a common practice to live-tweet (and not just events — people even live-tweet TV shows).
In particular, share the best photos and quotes from speakers and attendees, tagging their Twitter handles whenever possible to create more engagement. Designate someone to be in charge of live-tweeting your event throughout — it’s a great way to demonstrate the success of your event to all your Twitter followers. (And, in addition, or as an alternative to live-tweeting, you can also post videos and images to your page’s Instagram or Snapchat story as live updates.)