You’ve taken the time to plan the perfect event for your attendees, now it’s time to market it. And while you have a variety of marketing channels at your disposal, when it comes to event marketing, social media (SM) will allow you to reach millions of potentially interested event-goers without spending thousands of dollars on a campaign.
That’s the good news.
The bad news is that you’re not the only one to leverage the power of social media marketing. At this point in time there are hundreds of thousands of other business owners all vying for consumer attention. You’ll need to deploy SM marketing strategies that will help you stand out from all the digital noise so you can drive the most ticket and registration sales possible.
Tips to Promote Your Corporate Event With Social Media
Images Speak Louder Than Words
Words will only go so far to sell your event to prospects. Be sure to include eye-catching images in your posts. The images could be of the venue, of last year’s event, of the event planning phase, etc.
Post at the Right Times
One of the biggest mistakes event planners make is to post whenever they find the time. But WHEN you post matters a great deal. If you want your post to get the maximum amount of views, and you do, then you’ve got to publish at the right time of day.
How do you know when is the right time?
To start, you’ll want to know who your ideal prospect is. Create a persona for this person. Is it a C-level executive that travels internationally often? Is it for management that sits in front of a computer all day? Knowing who you wish to target will help you determine the most likely time they will see your post.
You can also do a search to find out what some marketing experts have determined are the best times to post on individual platforms.
And, at the end of the day, you really want to do your own experimenting to see what times work best. When do you see the most views and engagements? Once you find that sweet spot, stick to it. If you need to, use a scheduling tool to automatically post at these times.
Use the Platforms Your Audience is Most Likely On
You’ve probably noticed that new social media platforms seem to crop up on a monthly basis. But if you try and have a presence on ALL of them, you’ll wear your resources too thin.
Again, you’ll need to understand who your target demographic is. What platforms are they most likely to use? If you’re trying to reach those C-level execs, then LinkedIn may be a better option than Instagram. Trying to reach middle-aged women interested in life coaching? Facebook may work better than Twitter. Understanding your audience is imperative to being able to reach them effectively.
Leverage Your Biggest Brand Advocates
They don’t call them social media “networks” for nothing. SM marketing is as much about networking as it is anything else. And chances are you already have a healthy network of followers who are enthusiastic about your brand and will advocate on your behalf.
First, identify who your most enthusiastic advocates are, then reach out to them with a mutually beneficial opportunity. For instance, you can ask them to share your latest post (highlighting your event) in exchange for free event tickets for them and a guest.
Get Partners Involved
Just as you want to reach out to brand advocates to help with marketing, you also want to leverage any partners that will be a part of your event. This means asking sponsors, speakers, and even local restaurants that may be catering your event. It benefits these partners to help with promotion, so don’t be shy about asking.
5 Common Social Media Marketing Mistakes to Avoid Like Week-Old Sushi
So now that you know some steps you SHOULD take, let’s look at some common social media marketing mistakes you should do your best to avoid.
- Having No Marketing Plan
Without a strategic plan in place, social media marketing can be a gigantic waste of time and ad spend. It’s easy to fall into the trap of “winging it” and sporadically posting content about your event on your pages. But this is bad. Really bad.
You must approach social media marketing the same way you approach planning your event. Set specific goals, budgets and create a robust plan of action that outlines the steps to achieve your goal. Also, be sure to have proper metrics in place to recognize whether your initial marketing efforts are hitting the mark or whether you need to make some adjustments.
And speaking of measuring results, let’s move on to mistake numero dos…
- Measuring the Wrong KPIs
KPIs stands for Key Performance Indicators. Selecting the right ones will help you accurately measure your marketing efforts. Selecting the wrong ones will waste your time and have you repeat tasks that aren’t really helping you reach your goals.
Many planners make the mistake of relying on what are called “vanity metrics.” These are things like fans and followers. But those numbers don’t necessarily translate into conversions.
Better to track engagement, link clicks and actual sign-ups.
- Using Too Many Platforms
There is a myth that suggests marketers must have a presence on every single social media platform. That is simply not true. If you even attempted that, you would spread your time, budget and sanity too thin.
Effective social media marketing means choosing one to three platforms that are used by your target audience. Where does your tribe hang out? What times are most effective to get your content in front of them? What kind of content do they like to consume? The more you know about your audience and about the specific social media platform, the more relevant and effective your ad campaigns will be.
- Posting But not Engaging
They don’t call it “’social” media for nothing. You can’t expect to share a few bits of information about your event and expect throngs of people to sign up. You’ve got to make the effort to engage with your followers and take part in the conversations they’re having about your brand and event.
Answer questions. Ask questions. Make some jokes. Educated. Inspire. At the VERY least, respond to comments, be they positive or negative. Remember, people use social media because they desire human interactions.
- Not Having a Social Media Policy
It’s incredibly important to have a company-wide social media policy to eliminate the chances of creating any public embarrassments. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter how much of social media marketing you get right if one, single employee can ruin your reputation by posting something considered offensive or inappropriate.
Be sure to adopt a clear policy and outline exactly what is and is not acceptable. For most organizations, content that is deemed racist, obscene, sexist, derogatory or sexually suggestive is OFF LIMITS by all employees. Make sure this policy is clear and known by all.
You’ve put a lot of time and effort into planning your event. It would be a shame to have only a small amount of people actually attend. Social media is one of the most powerful channels to market your event, putting your message in front of millions of prospects. If you follow these tips, you’ll have a packed venue with enthusiastic attendees.
Need some help with promotion? Get in touch with us by clicking here. We’ll take care of your marketing so you can focus on getting every last detail of your event just right.
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