Photos on Instagram are like Videos on YouTube. Influential, networkable, and experiential. Posting on social media has become more popular than ever in recent years. It’s become an important aspect when marketing your events on social. Instagram is second only to Facebook as a place for sharing information and generating hype.
On Instagram alone, there are approximately 800 million users, the majority of which are keen to engage with content created by businesses. Of the vast user base, approximately 50% of them utilise Instagram Stories – a platform additional to the image feed that allows 15-second videos to be posted. All stories have a 24-hour expiry period.
The question is, how should event organisers use Instagram to draw in attendees? How can you capitalise on the buzz that’s generated during an event, and use it to drive momentum for the brand? Let’s look at what you can do with Instagram before, during and after an event.
While still images are the stock in trade for Instagram, Instagram Stories is a terrific way to break down barriers and increase relationships with followers. Stories are becoming increasingly more popular. It’s an easier way to convey what is going on throughout the day. The short videos can be customised with filters, added text and other effects that creates a largely personal and informal atmosphere. As these stories only last for 24 hours, it allows people to see what’s going on at your event, while not “clogging up the feed.”
Planning & Engaging
Before you start posting, it’s a good idea to create a plan for you how want to use Instagram as part of your overall event marketing strategy. Think about the narrative you want to tell. You’ll need to consider the tone and style of the event along with the demographics of your attendees. Lock down an event hashtag so you can start using it early and often.
Get your audience engaged prior to the event. Depending on your ticketing arrangements, you may be able to add in-app purchase options directly within Instagram. This can help reduce barriers to ticket sales. Build excitement as the event gets closer by including sneak peek glimpses of the venue, stall-holder previews or teasers about guest speakers.
Generate FOMO (fear of missing out) by using Stories to promote flash ticket discounts, VIP packages and other perks (the 24-hour expiry provides a natural time limit that’s well understood by the audience).
There is so much content you can post throughout the event as well. Use Instagram Live to capture moments like: speakers coming on stage, delegates arriving, registration crowds, or highlights from evening events. It helps to share the atmosphere with those who couldn’t make it and may encourage last-minute sales for multi-day events.
Create Online Chatter
Use the event hashtag wherever you can and encourage attendees to use it to create conversations online. Generate interaction with guests by asking for panel questions to be submitted with the hashtag, for example. Cross-posts or guest posts with sponsors, collaborators, and influencers helps to build a larger community and increases overall impression figures.
Post official photos of attendees and share to provide social proof for your brand and event. If your budget doesn’t extend to an official photographer, do some research on how to take excellent smartphone photos for Instagram. Alternatively, recruit some volunteers who are willing to manage this side of the event for you! Always seek permission to repost images from your event account and do so with full credit.
During and after your event, promote and thank your sponsors along with any other brands or individuals that contributed. Have a plan in place to continue your exposure once the initial buzz is over. Planning ahead will ensure you have quality content to share with your new followers to bring them on board with the brand/company.
For more ideas on how to effectively utilise Instagram, ask your event organiser if they have any recommendations. Using Instagram effectively thought an event has the potential to open your business to a whole new range of prospects.
For more information on Nectar CC and how we can help market your next brilliant event, please contact Peta on 1300 878 815 or firstname.lastname@example.org.