Social media is a tool of the time. It’s the in-thing and used every single day by millions of people from the likes of school children to Corporates.
Below are some of the reasons Social media can be your best tool for conferences.
- HASHTAG HEAVEN
A hashtag at a conference is the smallest most effective tool you can use. That small catchy hashtag you thought of opens a door where attendees can engage in conversation and discuss thoughts and ideas with others who are talking about exactly the same thing.
This one little hashtag is the foundation which links everything back to the same place.
To top that, a hashtag wall is an even better tool to use at a conference as it takes a digital conversation and turns it in to a visual conversation. Anyone’s tweets using the designated hashtag will be displayed on the huge wall for everyone to see which inevitably creates excitement and encourages a more likely response as users see just what using the hashtag can create!
- TWITTER TALK TIME
Allow audience members to ask questions via twitter. Although it’s less personable than the traditional pass the microphone along and introducing yourself method, this is so much better for those who are too shy to actually get up and ask a question. Some people with the biggest and best ideas are the most reserved.
Being able to tweet questions via twitter creates a level of moderation and gives the organisers the ability to select the most engaging and appropriate questions. Furthermore, it has the added bonus of helping speakers stay on track. As with point one, use a specialised hashtag for questions so these are easily recognisable and separate to the initial hashtag wall conversation.
- SHOUT OUT SPONSORS
That big hashtag wall everyone is looking at… do you see all that free space around the text? That is your valuable free advertising space where you can appreciate your sponsors. You can show sponsors in your banner; whether that be their logo or their hashtag. Or you make use of a new ingenious way which stops advertising looking so annoyingly obvious, called “in-line advertising”. Here, ads can be disguised as social posts mixed in within the stream of content that users are posting. It’s a less in your face and much more subtle method which minimises annoying users, yet still promotes and thanks your sponsors. #winwin!
- DON’T STOP THERE
The times before and after the conference are equally as important as the conference itself. A social media strategy should be planned before the conference to create a buzz and awareness so when it actually takes place, conversation is instant!
A really good strategy is to incentivise the use of the hashtag to win prizes at the actual conference such as behind the scenes chat with the speaker or V.I.P. access with front row seats? Whatever it is, it will encourage hastag use around social. After the conference, keep the buzz alive. Just because it’s over doesn’t mean conversation has to stop. Follow up opinions and thoughts about it online and even give early access invites for the next conference to those that are still socially involved.
Remember social media, whether you love it or hate it, is something that is ever growing and will forever be used. If you’re not already, start using it now and reep the amazing benefits that social has to offer!