I recently wrote about HOW to make your meeting or conference social-media friendly. A commenter then asked for more information about WHY you would want to do so.
I have covered the “why” elsewhere in my PodcastYourConference site and in various presentations and Webinars, but here is a quick list of the reasons why you should consider incorporating social media into your event planning.
- Running an event blog, or blogging about the event on your regular blog, will help to publicize the event among potential registrants.
- Tweeting about the event can do the same. In fact, Twitter, which encourages re-tweeting, may help your message spread even more quickly than will your blog. Of course your content has to be interesting. You can’t keep rebroadcasting the same “Hey we’re having an event” message.
- Ditto with building your presence on Facebook or any other venue where your audience gathers online.
- Pre-event podcast interviews with key speakers offer potential attendees, exhibitors and sponsors a glimpse of what they might be experiencing in your event’s keynote presentation, workshops, breakouts or other sessions. You’d be amazed at how much interest you can generate with a 10-minute audio podcast.
- Suppose you’re running an annual event, and your members, employees or customers are traveling from all over the world to be there. Do you think this is an opportune time to capture audio and video conversations, presentations, event feedback and so on? In my humble opinion, YES! The cost of recording, editing and publishing this content is likely to pale in comparison to your total event budget. USE this content now and in the future. Repurpose it. Repackage it. Make the most of it!
- If you take a few minutes to create an event hashtag (such as #iabc09), you make life easier for those who are blogging and tweeting about you. You also simplify your own tracking of the conversations about your event. Do you care what people are saying before, during and after your event? You should. This feedback is real and unvarnished, and can help you to organize even better meetings in the future.
Social media can help you to create buzz, boost registration numbers, foster a sense of community among attendees, entice exhibitors, and create relevant content for your Web site and marketing efforts.
Remember: Conversations about your organization and your event are happening, whether you’re listening to them or not. Be a part of them. Doing nothing is not a viable tactic.