Social media has changed the landscape of marketing in a number of ways. Perhaps one of the most crucial way relates to the way brands can interact with their audience in real time. Corporate Events are a particularly good example of the power social media can have in connecting individuals brought together under a common goals and interests.
The team at SMB recently ran the social media for Concierge Preferred during one of their largest events of the year and the largest single-day gathering of hospitality professionals in Chicago, the Concierge Preferred Trade Show. Check out our four biggest takeaways, which might be helpful the next time your business participates in some “live social”:
Generating successful real-time content for an event is all about keeping things creatively simple. You want to stand out amongst the social clutter while also providing a low barrier for your audience to join in on the conversation. Creating a hashtag for the event itself that’s relevant and easy to remember is key, and allows for attendees to contribute to and follow conversations with ease.
Display the hashtag on signage throughout the event space and ensure sponsors/other contributors are well aware of the desired verbiage well in advance of the event date(s). Set the example and create content at the event that’s full of visuals (pictures, videos, etc.) and key takeaways. You want material that’s going to illuminate aspects of an event, expose your brand to new faces and help build the event’s popularity.
For the Concierge Preferred Trade Show, we used #CPShow to create buzz and stay on top of what attendees were talking about. An estimated 345 tweets used this hashtag, reaching 72,551 accounts and generating 127,635 impressions. This not only benefited event participants but the Concierge Preferred Twitter account itself. The event helped CP end the month of April with 144 new Twitter followers, 24,000 tweet impressions and 1,316 profile visits.
While most of your social content during an event may be created in real time, you don’t want to arrive without a plan for execution. If you’re fortunate enough to have a team dedicated to social media, break down responsibilities by platform or create shifts throughout the day. Have a “command center” of sorts set up with tools for monitoring and fielding questions if possible, and make sure everyone is on the same page when it comes to voice, hashtags and necessary mentions needed for various sponsors.
At the CP Trade Show, six members of our team were assigned hourly time slots and equipped with an iPad set up with all the necessary apps (Twitter, Facebook Pages, Hootsuite, etc.) and logins. Our booth at the event served as the central meetup location and allowed for seamless transitions.
Whether it’s the type of content you’re creating or the attendees with whom you’re interacting, events provide a platform full of opportunities for both creativity and cross-promotion. Promoting other companies/sponsors at an event benefits both parties – one company’s mention becomes another company’s tweet, one company’s tweet becomes another company’s retweet. Watch the impressions grow as you promote amongst each other.
When tweeting at the CP Trade Show, our relationships with other area businesses helped us spread the word, and provided further incentive for attendees to engage with content. Throughout the day, we introduced various giveaways with gift cards from participating booths, encouraging attendees to retweet, take photos and answer questions.
Our team also focused heavily on “showing not telling” with images and videos. This is an easy way to create the kind of material that can be repurposed and shared out on other pages. As an example, this is a tweet from Concierge Preferred (6,243 followers) retweeted by Garrett Popcorn (19.2K followers).
Live social media provides a unique opportunity for engagement because the attendees are interested in your brand and content almost by definition. This is a limited opportunity to build connections and engage with a truly interested and engaged audience. Search through individuals utilizing the event hashtag on Twitter, retweet, favorite, and start conversations. Set up keyword searches through whatever monitoring tool you’re using to track mentions based around the location, event name and sponsors. These relationships you build over the course of the event may translate into future followers and even more important, future influencers.Digital & Social Articles on Business 2 Community