By Toby Britton, co-founder and CMO of social media aggregator Miappi
Once upon a time, events were about meeting people in the room and engaging in conversation, being inspired by the keynote and having a night away from your young kids.
Little has changed. In fact, the physical event, in the digital age has had a resurgence in popularity.
While the social age means we are all now ‘connected’, those connections are largely virtual. The traditional idea of community is long gone. Your ‘tribe’ is now digital and it’s spread out across the globe, rarely, if ever, to be seen in the flesh.
In this context events, conferences, breakfast, dinners and casual gatherings have become vital; real people meeting in the real world turns out to be a good thing. Who knew?
What’s important for today’s event is connecting the conversations and content from the event with the outside world. So, the rules for events have changed. The discussions and meetings are now taking place way beyond the room thanks to technology.
We have some handy tips for managing events in the social age:
Broadcast the Wi-Fi network
If people are not connected, then the conversation remains in the room.
Agree and broadcast the event #tag
Pre-the event and during, ensure everyone is aware of the hashtag for the event. The unique identifier helps attendees track conversations; it allows those not attending to engage in Q&A and helps event owners analyse the reach of the event conversation.
With discussions taking place inside the venue and online it’s vital that human moderation is in place. There are too many people who’ll find amusement in hijacking the hashtag or posting inappropriate content. This behaviour is a real risk for the event brand, owners and venue.
Blend your story
Don’t rely on one social channel. It can get a little one dimensional. Think about the visual aspects of Instagram or YouTube video playing alongside the written word; this adds diversity and visual appeal to your social content.
Consider a platform
Managing social media at an event can feel daunting. It’s LIVE; it’s real and there for it’s a risk. Here are some platforms that can take away the risk:
Use a social wall
Add all your feeds in one place, display it on a digital screen and the event website: Consider: www.miappi.com
Hootsuite and Sprout Social both provide excellent management tools to write your messages and monitor other conversations.
Buffer or Feedly provide simple ways to plan and schedule tweets, Facebook post of Instagram updates.
Post event follow-up
Don’t let the success or excitement from the event dissipate the moment the doors close at the venue on the last day. Add the social conversations to your venue website, collate the best content and use in follow-up emails, find analytics on the reach of the conversations around the globe to promote the success of the event.
Toby Britton, co-founder and CMO, Miappi, can be contacted via: www.miappi.com