5 Unique Ways to Market Your Event Using Social Media

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We host events each quarter at MediaLeaders. Join our mailing list to get invites near you.If you want to do something to give your business a boost - how about hosting an exciting event? Sounds great, but how are you going to pay for the event and market it? Well, we have found 5 unique ways to market your event using social media. At MediaLeaders we've hosted dozens of events and usually it costs zero dollars (if you manage it yourself) and you have the potential to reach thousands of people. So we've come up with some tips on how to use social media effectively and uniquely to help market your event.

1) Use the phone to ask your customers and partners what they want.

Before you even finalize plans for your event, call a few of your customers on the phone and tell them you’re thinking of hosting an event. Get their ideas and have them help craft your plan. What industry would they want the speakers to be from? Who would they like the speakers to be? Do they want a panel, individual presentations, a quick talk and then a longer networking portion? Use a poll to decide what you should give away at the event, too. It’s a great way to get people involved, excited, and make them feel like you value their opinions.

2) Create teaser content from your speakers.

We have found great success when inviting our speakers to create some teaser content that highlights them on video before the vent. We did this for a few of our past panel discussions in Santa Monica. You can interview your speakers/panelists one-on-one (or in a Google hangout) to make a short video with a quick bio and a preview of what they’re going to talk about. Then, ask them to use their own social media avenues to get people excited, or to write blog posts you can put on your site. The more people can have a taste of what’s coming, the more they’ll want it. Also, you get to keep that video content on your site for great SEO juice, long after the event is over.

3) Design a #hashtag, then promote it at the event.

Come up with a unique hashtag, preferably something fun, unique and less than 8 characters. Use it constantly as you post updates on the event, tell anyone involved with the event to use it, and encourage your attendees to hop on your hashtag bandwagon, too. Then hook up Tweetwally, set up a screen in the event’s room, and let the attendees see (in real time) what other people are thinking about the event. At our Digital Growth Summit we created #DGS13 to track people talking about the event. Tip: Use search.twitter.com to see who’s using your hashtag before you announce it to the world. Think of your hashtag as a radio signal, you want to be the only ones using it, otherwise your signals will get confusing with all the chatter.

4) Partner with people that already have a great following on the web.

You’ve seen the bloggers, vloggers, and Tweeters out there with tens of thousands (even hundreds of thousands) of followers, right? If your reach isn’t quite in those numbers yet, why not partner with someone who has that kind of following and invite them to moderate, visit or speak at your event? Then they might then promote your event in a natural way. Also, they might end up becoming a friend, since you’re offering them value. Get them involved with your awesome hashtag and give them some VIP treatment at the event. Important note: Only ask someone to promote you if their online personality fits with your business and your brand. Otherwise, your partnership might do more harm than good. When in doubt, Keep it Light, Bright and Polite. :)

5) Create a (visual) countdown.

A picture’s worth a thousand words, and a trend in social media is proving it. Infographics, pictures, and videos are becoming the best traffic drivers out there. After all, they’re quick to read, easy to understand, and usually more entertaining than words alone. Take advantage of this trend and come up with a countdown to the event. Everyday, or every few days, release a teaser for your audience - a short youtube video, a cool Instagram or an infographic on the stats for your event. Follow this tip and you’re sure to build anticipation (just make sure the event lives up to the hype).

What social media event tips do you have? Let us know in the comment box below.

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