Getting social media to work effectively in order to gain traffic can be an arduous task. Using an event is a great technique to get your social followers engaged and networking – and in a way that will benefit your company. This blog post will cover the different ways you can leverage an event to capitalise on your social media presence.

social media and events

Consider a Competition or Give-away

A give-away is a perfect opportunity to get attendees interacting with you on social media. Try using a tactic like ‘follow for entry’ or ‘hashtag #example for your chance to win’ and ask that each entrant tags your business handle. This is a great way to gain more brand awareness and use each entrant as a platform for gaining more followers.

Everybody loves a little healthy competition, so consider a competition instead of the simple give away. You can incentivise engagement by offering prizes to the participants who create the highest impact online.

People are always keen to get something for free but make sure you choose a give-away or prize relevant to your audience. This will ensure they feel it is worth entering.

Hash Tagging is Relevant

Make sure you have an event name that is easily hashtag-able. This is usually based on the theme for the event (e.g. #BuildingCommunities). Make sure that the hashtag is clearly signed around the venue, on the marketing collateral that people are given upon entry, and on the slide decks. Ensure the MC encourages all guests to join in on the conversation via social media as early in the event proceedings as possible. It’s a great way to gain more traffic to your social pages and encourages interaction.

Encourage Conversation by Making it Public

Take a projector to the event and project the event’s hashtag twitter feed onto a prominent screen. This conversation wall will be a constant reminder of the event’s conversation tags and it can encourage attendees to get involved in order to get their name up there as well.

Identify Prospects

Why wait until after the event to see an attendee list for prospects and contacts? Switched-on hustlers check the social media feed during the event to identify people that they want to connect with. You should use this strategy as the event organiser as well. Informed of their opinions and insights, you can network, join in on the conversation and build relationships with your guests much more effectively.

Find a Social Influencer

Make sure your guest list includes a couple of people that provide a strong social influence. You can use a tool like followerwonk to analyse their followers and their level of social authority. It’s not a crime to personally ask the selected influencers to create a stir that night – they’ll probably be flattered. Choose someone who isn’t afraid to ask on-topic, controversial questions in order to generate conversation. Any engagement that can be linked back to your event and social accounts is good engagement.

Analyse Data

Don’t fall into the trap of pure relief and relaxation after the event. Okay, you can go home and sleep first, if you must. But make sure you analyse your social media history within a day or two while it is still fresh in the news feed, much in the same way that you would debrief on your event coordination process. Look for opportunities to convert your most vocal social supporters into customers.

Stayin’ Alive

The engagement shouldn’t stop just because the event finished. You want your business and brand to remain in the attendees’ minds. Continue to engage with your audience for at least one week after the event, contributing to any ongoing conversations. Make an impression and stick in people’s minds. A little extra engagement might secure a loyal customer for life.

Both event and social media presences are great ways to engage with potential customers and grow positive working relationships. Try following these tips to increase your industry presence both online and offline.