Live event marketing has diminished through the use of online advertising; with the majority of event marketing now being completed through social media channels. The main benefits to promoting an event online are that it is much more cost effective and a larger audience can be reached. Although your event promotion will be online, you’ll still need to do work to successfully market your event through social media channels.
Using Facebook is a fantastic way of marketing a new event; there are over one billion active Facebook users around the world so it’s an ideal marketing tool, particularly if you target customers who are social media savvy.
Let’s take a look at some tips to help you make the most out of promoting an event through Facebook:
TIP 1: NAMING THE EVENT – KEEP IT SHORT AND SWEET
Facebook members now view their invites in calendar format; which means that only three or four words of your event name will appear on their events page. If your event was created using a long title which does not clearly display what will be happening, your Facebook friends may overlook it, so it is best to give the event a name that is short and sweet.
The event description should also be simple and snappy. Only a few lines are provided before Facebook automatically trims the preview, so stick to detailing the basics.
TIP 2: THE EVENT BANNER
Take advantage of the event banner space by uploading a high quality, professionally designed image. You could use an image of your company’s logo or you could use a promotional graphic containing details about the event.
TIP 3: INVITE
After successfully creating your Facebook event, it’s tempting to invite every single one of your Facebook friends (the more the merrier right?) Remember that you want to avoid annoying your friends and having them ignore your future invitations! Instead of spamming your friend list, carefully select only those that I think will be interested in attending or benefiting from the event. By targeting the friends that are more likely to respond and join the event, you will maximise the engagement level.
This may take a while but thankfully there are a few things you can do to speed up the process such as inviting your friends by their location, list or group.
This method makes it easier to target the friends that are more likely to respond to the invitation and it saves a lot of time because it will enable you to skip those friends that are in different city.
As well as inviting your own Facebook friends to your event, you can also ask others who are involved in organising the event to do the same by adding their accounts as an admin of the event page. Depending on how many people you can persuade to help you out, this can increase your reach dramatically. Ask any companies, organisations and performers involved to post the event on their Facebook walls, blogs and other social media sites.
TIP 4: ADVERTISE
Spread the word by posting a status announcing the event with a link to where people can join. However, only do this a couple of times as a constant barrage of posts asking people to attend will make you appear desperate and will annoy those connected with you!
Use the event wall to post daily content. Talk about what will be taking place at the event and who will be involved. Don’t forget to tag anything relevant to boost exposure. Include images with posts as people are more likely to pay attention if there is a visual presence. Increase the frequency of posts in the final few days leading up to the event to build hype.
TIP 5: COUNTDOWN
Create a countdown clock and post screen captures every couple of days to build up a buzz leading up to the event
TIP 6: COMPETITIONS
Running competitions is a fun way to get people involved and build a buzz too. Offer to pick a person at random to give away a free prize to if they share the event on their Facebook wall. The better the prize, the more people will be willing to share
TIP 7: CUSTOMER INTERACTION
If you are running a monthly event, ask previous customers to post images of the last month’s event that took place and tag the event and anyone relevant or involved in the images; this will entice others to come along to the next event you will be holding.
TIP 8: MONITOR AND MAINTAIN
Never let a customer inquiry go unanswered. Be sure that your social media manager or team keeps updated on any notifications relating to the event. Be sure to answer any questions as soon as possible and try to ”Like” whenever someone joins or shares the event. Monitor your event wall daily and make sure that you delete any spam posts or ”hide” them. This will ensure that the page will maintain a professional look.
Image courtesy of BYLEI | Creatief organisatie en evenementenbureau, Flickr.