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How to Promote Your Events Through Social Media (Vol 1)

Does your business conduct events?

Are you wondering how to use social media to promote those events?

Social media is a powerful tool to gain exposure, whether you’re hosting a physical conference or an online event.

Read on to see various creative ways to increase awareness, engagement, and sales for your event.

#1: Use Facebook Ads to Remarket to Prospects

Facebook custom audiences allow you to show ads to people who have already visited your website. This is called remarketing (also known as retargeting). Advertisers can show event ads to Facebook users who left the website before purchasing a ticket.

Remarketing can be a very effective strategy because people rarely buy the first time they hear of an event or see an offer. This is especially true for big-ticket items like conferences and conventions.

#2: Create a Highlight Reel From Prior Events

Video provides a unique opportunity to convey the energy and excitement of a live event. Great visuals and catchy audio are a potent combination that drives registration. It also creates engagement opportunities as the video is shared with friends.

Things to keep in mind when creating a video:

  • Remember your intended audience. Your video should convey the value of your event to prospective attendees. Make the benefits of attending crystal-clear.
  • Host on both YouTube and Vimeo. Each platform has different strengths, so take advantage of that. YouTube is the #2 search engine in the world and the most used video platform on the Internet. Vimeo, though smaller, offers more control over your brand and no distracting banner advertisements.
  • Leverage it everywhere. Video can be shared almost everywhere: your website and/or event landing page, in your newsletter, in articles, with affiliates and on social media, including 15-second clips on Instagram. 

#3: Harness the Power of Visual Testimonials

Do you have great comments in the exit surveys from previous events? Maybe you’ve interviewed attendees or speakers and captured statements of excitement about specific sessions, speakers or your event in general. Don’t let those nuggets go to waste!

#4: Empower Affiliates, Fans and Attendees With Shareable Assets

Make it easy to share your event. Provide a web page with branded downloadable resources that fit any platform.

For attendees: Capitalize on their excitement! Provide a button to immediately share a tweet or post when they land on your thank-you page after registering.

#5: Use Photos of Attendees in Social Updates

If you have a repeat event, leverage those fun photos you took at previous events. Even better, share user-generated content on your social accounts.

Take a flattering, fun picture of some of your attendees and create a status update. Identify the people in the picture and be sure to tag them if you can. This gives people an opportunity to comment and talk about how much they learned or what a great time they had and how much they’re looking forward to attending again.

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Event Planning Mistakes to Avoid

We make mistakes. Everyone does. While some mistakes are unavoidable, it’s important to learn from them so that you can avoid making them in the future. Check out some common mistakes below and how you can avoid them!

  1. Not asking for help (enough) – no matter what stage of life or business you’re in, asking for help can change everything, but it’s important to create a relationship with the person you need help from before you ask for help. Ask for help, but build a relationship first.
  2. Not paying attention to your financial situation – It’s easy to have a financial advisor take over your finances or never open your bank statements, but sticking your head in the sand only leads to more insecurity and worry. Make sure to keep track of EVERYTHING you spend money on. Use spreadsheets, software systems…whatever works for YOU, do that.  And you shouldn’t just be keeping track of the money spent on planning an event, but also everything that is spent on running your business as a whole! Take accountability for your finances – no matter what.
  3. Not celebrating your accomplishments – it’s easy to let things pass because they’re “no big deal.” However, if you don’t celebrate even your smallest accomplishments then it’s hard to keep going when things get tough. Celebrate your successes. Always.
  4. Avoiding setting up systems – this takes time but start setting up systems as early as possible. Start by identifying what you love doing and are good at vs. those tasks you avoid because you don’t want to do them. Once you’ve got your list, find someone (whether you find an intern or hire an employee) who loves doing the tasks you don’t enjoy. Allow them to focus on the things you dislike so you can focus on the parts of planning events and running your event planning business that you love. Do what you love and delegate the rest.
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What is Event Planning?

When you’re first deciding how to be an event planner there are many things you need to do.

There’s an overwhelming amount of information and action to take – especially if you’re looking online.

How do you move forward and take stride when you’re just starting in the industry?

First, decide if event planning is right for you. Many newbies love the idea of planning events but they don’t ask themselves, “What is event planning?”

With so many job titles and job descriptions, many people confuse event planning and event management.

What is Event Planning?

Event planning is the process of budgeting, scheduling, choosing a venue or event site, coordinating permits and licenses, arranging entertainment including bands and speakers, and meeting with caterers to choose a menu. The term event planning is used when planning weddings, meetings or parties.

Event Management is the process of overseeing and managing the entire event from start to finish, including the event team and/or volunteers. Typically, event managers have more experience than a planner and manage the entire project. The term event management is usually used when referring to large-scale events like festivals, conferences, or concerts.

Regardless of which title you choose to give yourself, there are 3 key qualities that an event planner must have to succeed.

  1. Time Management – you must be able to coordinate multiple schedules at once, in order to be a successful event planner.
  2. Resourcefulness – thinking quickly on your feet is critical to planning events – no matter what size – because even the best laid plans don’t always go as planned and you’ll need to know how to seamlessly fix issues without your client or the event guests knowing.
  3. Budgeting – one of the most important skills to have as an event planner, yet often ignored because many of us like the creative side of event planning more than dealing with the bottom line. However, in order to be a successful event planner and make a profit, you must know your numbers. If budgeting scares you, sign up for a class at a local college to learn the basics.

3 Reasons Event Planning is Not For You

What if you love planning events but you aren’t sure it’s the right career path for you?

Giving yourself permission to plan events on the side or for fun is absolutely OK, but if you’re wondering if it should be a full-time job, ask yourself if you struggle with these 3 skill busters.

  1. Procrastination – if you’ve been dabbling in event planning for more than 6 months, this may not be the right career choice for you. Taking action quickly, being responsive and decision-making is all part of the job.
  2. Discretion – lacking discretion and understanding how and when to send client updates is fundamental. If you feel the need to update your client about ever (little) detail when you should spend time fixing problems and/or finding solutions, event planning is not right for you.
  3. Listening Skills – not having the ability to listen and understand client needs leads to mistakes and bad decisions. Effectively listening to your clients, vendors and team make your job a lot easier.