How To Give Your Event A Social Media Personality All Its Own
One of the most powerful ways to promote your event is to give it a voice and a personality. If your event can “speak for itself” it becomes an entity completely separate from any event organizer or organization and creates a brand attendees will start talking to and following.
The best way to create this event “persona”? Social media!
Social media gives your event an outlet to be creative, funny, informative, sarcastic or whatever personality traits you want to convey on a medium almost all of your potential attendees are already on.
Here's the inside track to making sure your event has a vibrant social media personality all its own.
Before setting up any social media accounts, the first step is deciding what personality you want your event to embody. The personality you choose should not necessarily mimic yours, though. Remember, you're trying to create a unique identity that reflects the event not its organizer.
Often times, it works well to imagine your event as a person. What would they sound like? How would they dress and act? If your event is a punk rock battle of the bands you may want to be edgy and rebellious. If you are a tech conference you might want to be witty and informative.
The persona you adopt should resonate with the typical attendee of your event. The goal is to engage and connect with them so base your persona around them.
Now that you have your event identity chosen, it's time to start creating social media accounts. There are thousands of different social media sites your event can be on but to keep things manageable I recommend using around 3-5 different accounts. If you're the punk rock battle of the bands, it makes sense to be on music oriented sites like MySpace or SoundCloud. If you're the tech conference you may want to try popular "techie" social media like Google+ or Snapchat.
To keep it simple, check out these 3 main and essential social media platforms to give your event a voice:
Creating a Facebook Business Page
Just like millions of Facebook users have a personalized profile page that tells their story, so, too, can your event. Facebook is a perfect starting point because the vast majority of your attendees are already on it and can easily connect to your page.
When creating you page the two main features to utilize to really let your event persona shine:
- Cover & Profile photos
- These are the first things people will see when visiting your page so be sure to make them both relevant and interesting. These images will influence how your event is perceived so make sure they are aligned with your persona.
- "About Us" info
- This is your first chance to say something on your page. Describe your organization and your event not as you would but as your event would. A comedy festival may choose to strike a jokingly sarcastic tone when writing the history of its event or its organizers.
Setting Up A Twitter Handle
When creating your Twitter account, the most important thing to customize is your handle, . The handle is the title people will tag you with when mentioning or tweeting at you. While you can keep your name simple (like the name of your event or organization) your handle is where you can get creative and establish an identity.
It's also important to remember to keep your handle relatively short. Every tweet has to be less than 140 characters so the longer your handle the less room people will have to write their message and add hashtags (we'll get to those in a sec).
Get Visual With Instagram
Instagram is a powerful tool to upload, edit and share photos related to your event. You can also add short snippets of text to accompany each photo as well.
This a great way to use imagery and visuals to bolster your event's identity and give people a sneak peek and what goes on behind the scenes. While a concert might would consider sharing highly stylized photos of its musicians, a small fundraiser might share photos of the event being set up to add a personal connection to the cause.
Share & Engage
Once you've determined your personality and created the accounts to display it, it's finally time to let it shine! While you should alter your strategy slightly for each social media you use, the tone and personality should remain consistent throughout.
They key here is to identify points of customization where you can demonstrate your event's unique personality. For example, "favoriting" somebody's tweet on Twitter is great but it does nothing beyond notifying them you enjoyed the tweet. There is no customization and minor engagement. A hashtag, on the other hand, is a perfect way to actively engage someone AND make a statement about what your event is all about.
Adding a hashtag makes your tweets easy to track and engage with on Twitter but, more importantly, it gives you an added place to add some personalization. If your event is a comedy festival, the hashtag #worstcomedyfestever is a sarcastic and tongue-in-cheek way to represent your festival and bring the humor to your attendees before they even buy a ticket.
Your goal should to find these hashtag-like points of customization on all the social media you use. Whether it be clever comments to match a photo on Instagram or educational daily statuses on Facebook, these points on customization are what will allow you to voice your event.
And once you've found these points, start engaging and communicating directly with not just your entire audience but with individuals as well. The best way to get a feel for someone (or, in this case, something) is to have a conversation and the same applies for your event. This is how you truly promote your event's personality and establish a connection that will, hopefully, lead your audience to attend your event.