June 29, 2016
By Anderson Conte

Social media is one of those marketing strategies that you know is important, but all you really need is an event hashtag, right? Wrong! It’s time to go beyond the hashtag and utilize social media to take your event to the next level. Emily Vera, Social Media Manager at Cvent, and Emma Bica from PeopleNet welcomed a packed room of event professionals to discuss the importance of social media in meetings and events.

The state of social media is constantly evolving and changing. Social media is not just a spoke on the wheel of your event marketing. It’s becoming the entire way events are promoted, engaged with, and experienced. Here a five best practices to get you started:

  1. Know your audience. Don’t spend time on a platform that isn’t suited for the demographic you’re aiming to reach.
  2. How much time can you commit? Be careful not to get in over your head. Start off with a couple key platforms you can conquer successfully and add more as you become more experienced and have more time.
  3. Be aware of your industry. Know the rules and regulations associated with it as well as what is best suited to showcase what you have to offer.
  4. What’s your goal? Step back and know what you are looking to accomplish with each platform.
  5. Assess your resources. Will you need content or assistance from others? Have content created so you are prepared before you get social.

Next, let’s talk about some hashtag best practices. You don’t want to overdo it, but you also can’t ignore it. If you don’t create an event hashtag, you can bet your attendees will. Here are some things to keep in mind when coming up with your event hashtag.

Unique: Search Twitter for the hashtag you have in mind. If it has been used recently, you will need to rethink it. If not, have at it!

Short: Remember, on Twitter you only have 140 characters to use. Because that’s where most of the conversation will be taking place, you need to make sure to keep your hashtag short.

Related: Your hashtag should reflect your event. Ex: West Coast Jazz Fest (#WCJazz2014) or a Children’s Charity Holiday Party (#CCHolidayParty).

Memorable: You want your attendees to use this hashtag when they are talking about your event. This means that you want them to be able to remember what hashtag is associated with the event, without them having to try to find it every time they want to talk about your event.

Similar to any other marketing campaign, if you do not properly promote your hashtag, no one will know it exists. Your hashtag should be everywhere!

From understanding your audience’s social media preferences to automating social tactics, learning social media best practices will help amplify your event, boost onsite attendee engagement, and create an event experience that will live long after your attendees go home.

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