12 Ways to Use Social Media to Promote Events

Do you have events which your business host? Are you wondering how to use social media to help promote those events?

Social media is a powerful tool to gain exposure, whether you are hosting a physical conference or an online event.

In this post, you will see creative ways to increase awareness, engagement and sales for your event.

Remarketing Facebook Ads to Prospects

Facebook custom audiences allow you to show ads to people who have already visited your website. This is called remarketing also known as retargeting. Advertisers can show event ads to Facebook users who left the website before purchasing a ticket.

Remarketing can be a very effective strategy because people rarely buy the first time they hear of an event or see an offer.  This is especially true for big ticket items like conferences and conventions.

Create a Highlight Reel

Video provides a unique opportunity to convey the energy and excitement of a live event. Great visuals and catchy audio are a potent combination that drives registration. It also creates engagement opportunities as the video is shared with friends. Create a video that conveys the excitement and fun of your event.

Keep in mind the following when creating a video:

– Remember your intended audience. Your video should convey the value of your event to prospective attendees. Make the benefits of attending crystal clear.
– Host on both YouTube and Vimeo. Each platform has different strengths, so take advantage of that. YouTube is the number 2 search engine in the world and the most used video platform on the internet. Vimeo, though smaller, offers more control over your brand and no distracting banner advertisements.
– Leverage it everywhere. Video can be shared almost everywhere, your website, event landing page, in your newsletter, in articles, with affiliates and on social media, including 15 second clips on Instagram.
– Facebook loves video. Uploading native video maximises your exposure in the news feed. Facebook videos achieves more viral reach that YouTube links. You can also set your video as Featured for maximum visibility on your Facebook page.

Power of Visual Testimonials

Do you have great comments in the exit surveys from previous events? Maybe you have interviewed attendees or speakers and captured statements of excitement about specific sessions, speakers or your event in general. Do not let those opinions go to waste.

Create simple graphic images with these quotes and comments. Share these visuals in your email marketing campaign, social platforms, blog posts and email signatures. Be sure to give attribution to the commenter. People love to see their comments used and they often share this type of graphic. Also, having these third party statements lends credibility because they provide positive word of mouth about your speakers, sessions and events.

Empower Fans and Attendees

Make it easy to share your event. Provide a web page with branded downloadable resources that fit any platform. For attendees, capitalise on their excitement. Provide a button to immediately share a tweet or post when they land on your thank you page after registering.

For fans, make it easy for them to share your event by providing a variety of downloadable content such as audio, video, an article, graphics, updates on social media, email/blog posts and newsletter updates.

Provide options to accommodate different posting styles as well as the image requirements of the various social networks. Rectangular images work best on Twitter, while square images look best on Instagram.

Use Photos of Attendees

If you have a repeat event, leverage those fun photos you took at previous events. Even better, share user-generated content on your social accounts.

Take a flattering, fun picture of some of your attendees and create a status update. Identify the people in the picture and be sure to tag them if you can. This gives people an opportunity to comment and talk about how much they learned or what a great time they had and how much they are looking forward to attending again.

Create a Hashtag

This tip may seem like a no-brainer but you would be surprised how many events skip this vital step. Create, use and market your event specific hashtag. You should be using this hashtag well in advance of your event dates and it should be included on everything. Every digital image you create, every piece of collateral, you email signature and share it.

By using an event specific hashtag, you will make it really easy for people to find not only what you are sharing but what other people are saying too. This is also a great way to create and participate in an engaging conversation with attendees and interested parties.

Mention Your Event in Your Bios

Now that you have created your hashtag, do not forget to add it to the Bio or About section of each of your social accounts. An event hashtag in the Bio section is an often underused tactic but it has the potential for big gains. Once you have a link to your event, update your Bio section and then people have a very simple way to find out more. They just need to click the link.

Not only does this create an easy way for people to see the event, it also ties that event directly to you. Ultimately, people connect to people and this is one way to give authenticity and transparency to your personally, not just the event.

Quote Overlays of Speakers

It is almost impossible to over emphasise the importance of using visuals in your marketing. While a headshot of a speaker might excite some people, it is important to share something worthwhile from that speaker as well. Take one powerful statement from each of your speakers and add that to a graphic containing a head of the speaker. This gives people something to tie that speaker, a glimpse into his or her personality or presentation.

This also provides another opportunity to give your speakers additional exposure.

Group post of Event Speakers

Odds are, you selected your event speakers because they are thought leaders in their fields. What better way to highlight the calibre of talent at your event than an expert roundup blog post?

Asking your presenters to contribute to this type of post has several benefits. Your speakers will feel appreciated when they are afforded an opportunity to display their expertise to your audience. Prospective attendees get a preview of the excellent content shared at your event. Your readers gain the wisdom from multiple experts in one post.

Some ideas for roundup posts are marketing tips, favourite tools, blogging tips and marketing predictions.

Share Behind the Scenes Content

A lot of work goes into pulling off a fantastic event. Give a glimpse into this exciting and sometimes chaotic experience by sharing images and videos of the preparations going on.

Share stories of how you are pulling everything together and do not forget, mistakes and challenges happen. Be authentic and share the challenges you face and what steps you took to resolve them. It humanises your brand and make you more relatable.

Posting behind the scenes photos and videos is also a great way to generate buzz and boost engagement. It builds an emotional connection by fostering a sense of being an insider to the event.

Create a Facebook Event Page

Most people log into Facebook at least once a day. Make it easy for them to keep up with event news by creating an event page listing. Your event page is also a great place to encourage networking before the event. The convenience of an event page also encourages sharing by attendees.

To help make your event a success, Facebook has added new tools such as targeted news feed ads and event insights to measure the effectiveness of your efforts. As the big day approaches, do not forget to send out reminders to encourage people to RSVP on your event page.

These are just some of the tactics you can implement to promote your events on social media. It is important to try a variety of tactics and see what resonates with your audience. If something works, remember to document it in your marketing plan to use it again.


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