Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Using Social Media for Offline Events

Tomorrow night, The Boston Globe's office is host to the Mass Innovation Nights. Insights will have a booth at the event, so in addition to looking at what the @massinno Twitter account is doing to promote the event online, we've been thinking about how we can be using social media for offline events such as this one. Here are a few ways I think we can all use social media to promote events and increase attendance.

1. Create a Twitter hashtag - To encourage attendance and promote your event, create a Twitter hashtag and include it on all promotions created for the event, so it's known to attendees and prospective attendees prior to the event. A twitter hashtag easily allows for sharing info and networking prior to, during and after an event. It also allows people to see who's attending an event prior to committing themselves.Twitter hashtag use is a great way to improve attendance numbers and keep people in touch about an event. It provides a social feel online and offline during the event.

2. Promote your presence at an event prior to and during an event - Prior to and during an event a social media strategy is crucial. We've been tweeting about the Mass Inno Night event and our booth using the Twitter hashtag that Mass Inno developed (#MIN45). We've also been promoting our special offer for the night to entice people to visit our booth tomorrow night. If you have a giveaway or sweepstakes that people can enter, it'd be great to use social media to get the word out that people should stop by your booth to enter to win, and more importantly learn about your business offerings.

3. Upload pictures during and after an event to your social media accounts - As the old saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. Posting pictures at an event makes the offline event even more social online. Pictures help to encourage people to stop by your booth and allows you to share all that you have to offer at your booth or event. (Don't forget to use the event's Twitter hashtag!) Posting pictures after an event helps encourage future attendance and humanizes your brand. In the pictures you upload include any special offer or giveaway as well as your business offerings you had at your booth or event to show prospective attendees what they can expect at a future event.

Do you have more tips for using social media to promote an event? Add them in the comments!

P.S. If you're attending #MIN45, be sure to stop by our booth!

*Offer valid through 12/31/12

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