Following on from my time spent driving the social media programme for the IBM Smarter Commerce Global Summit held in Monaco this June, I’ve been pondering the importance and real value of using social media effectively for events.

This week,  I stumbled across an infographic, titled ‘4 Incredibly Easy Ways to Use Social Media to Boost Events’ and I wanted to share some key takeaways and thoughts it sparked for me.

I was interested to note that 84% of event organisers use Facebook to promote their events, since for me, Twitter is the real winner when it comes to events (only 61%). I feel that my surprise here probably comes down to my bias towards B2B events, which I’ve had more experience of to date. Twitter is perfect for B2B experiences, since it generates quality conversation and makes thought-leadership sharing incredibly easy. With a more B2C slant, I can see that the real value of Facebook is the ability to make it visual. From a quick peek at the Facebook pages for Wireless Festival and Glastonbury, you can see how they are capitalising on the use of images to promote the events.

Twitter is also very much an important playing ground when an event is actually taking place, so maybe other platforms such as Facebook and Pinterest have more value in the run up and after an event? As Eventility point out, social media offers value with regards to the organisation and promotion of events, as well as opportunity to extend their lifetime value.

However, for me the really exciting part is the options available to us to enhance the live experience through innovative use of social media. You can read my recent blog ‘Events best practice: Creating a hive of social media activity’, where I reflect on some of the key insights I garnered from the IBM Summit:

1)      Create triggers

2)      Give people a reason to participate

3)      Experiment with gamification

4)      Demonstrate that you are listening

5)      Make it visual

Follow these simple steps and you will be on to a winner…

Lastly, I just want to round-off by stating that I believe the use of social media at events is still very much in its infancy. Not only do I foresee many more exciting developments rolling out (including the growth of event specific social platforms, such as Events for Vivastream), but with the usage of social media always on the up, the options and opportunities available to us social media and event folk will only become more wide-ranging and exciting.

Infographic, courtesy of Eventility, 4 Incredibly Easy Ways to Use Social Media to Boost Events Infographic

Infographic using social media at events

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