August 14, 2019
With everyone focusing on digital marketing, it can be easy to forget how effective “real-world marketing” can be. We’re talking about live event engagement — which actually combines both real-world marketing and digital marketing. A couple of things we at Applied Art & Technology know a lot about.
In our experience with live event production and marketing, we’ve found that attendees remember certain companies and brands most when there is a strong digital component to complement their “real-world” presence. Examples of digital experiences range from social media to virtual reality, and these tools can be applicable to events as varied as trade shows and shareholder meetings.
Take, for instance, our work with MidAmerican Energy Company at the Iowa State Fair. In addition to installing a pair of massive LED walls, we produce and display digital content, such as original videos and aggregated social media posts. This live event strategy is successful because it leads to halted foot traffic and fairgoer engagement with the MidAmerican brand.
Below, we list our five most important tips for live event success, using social media as a primary engagement tool.
1) Use an Event Hashtag
Aligning your company’s event presence with a hashtag can boost engagement metrics on social media and encourage attendees to interact with your brand both before and during an event. In our Iowa State Fair example (see video above), we use #iowastatefair, among other hashtags, to compile and sort fairgoers’ posts on a MidAmerican-branded display. Such a social media strategy helps connect positive event experiences back to your company. Fairgoers can pose for pictures anywhere in the Fairgrounds, use one of the hashtags and and then head to the MidAmerican building to see their post. And who doesn’t want to see a picture of themselves eating a giant turkey leg on a 40 foot LED display?
2) Encourage Sharing at Your Event
This goes hand in hand with our first tip, as it’s not enough to simply throw around a hashtag a few times before your event. You need to actively
encourage attendees to post their experiences to social media during the event itself. We recommend pushing out social posts of your own to remind
event attendees to do the same, as well as engaging with attendees face to face.
3) Live Stream Your Event Experience
Live streaming is a great way to maximize your reach to those who aren’t able to attend your event in person. Whether you want to share an experiential
trade show booth or tout attendance numbers, a live stream can help position your company as a must-see participant at industry and community events
alike. And best of all, you can reuse live stream videos later on as marketing content to commemorate your event on social media.
4) Post Questions and Polls
If you want to encourage even more direct engagement with your attendees, try posting event-related questions and polls on your social channels. These
can be as open ended as “Who was your favorite speaker at today’s conference?” or as survey-structured as “Did you prefer VR experience A, B or C?”
Such questions can elicit a rousing discussion among your attendees, even after your event is over.
5) Say Thanks & Share
This goes without saying, but it’s always a good idea to thank your attendees for participating once your event is over. This not only inspires good
will; it also gives you an opportunity to drum up interest for your company’s next promotional gathering. Another post-event tip? Share a photo (or
video!) gallery of your event experience, using your event hashtag to boost visibility.
Need any help with live event production or marketing? Connect with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.