Had enough of social media conversation, and just wanna have a party?
Reward your fans and customers by creating a world-class event. Let them know how awesome they are. Or, have a wine-tasting. Host an invite-only gallery viewing. Have an exclusive sale. Have a everyone-welcome bash and let the world know. Whatever you do, do something.
Social media is the perfect place to plan, manage, and promote the events that make fans love you and customers come back for more.
Set up a specific hashtag and encourage attendees to use it. Make sure they know about it when they arrive so they can tweet during the event and use the hashtag. Start using the hashtag in tweets ahead of time as you talk about the event to build up a little pre-event excitement. Repetition and frequency are important, since very few people will ever see everything you post. Twitter feeds move quickly.
Using a social media tool like TodayLaunch will make publishing and scheduling event updates easy. You’ll also want to monitor the usage of the event hashtag on Twitter, and get in on those conversations to build the hype.
Why Use Twitter: It works best alongside other social media event efforts as a way to spread the message, get people curious, and build community around your event via the hashtag.
Use Facebook Events
Facebook Events are almost the old standard at this point. They are simple to create, using the ‘Events’ tab in the upper left corner of your Facebook homepage (news feed). Facebook will walk you through the process. You can find out more about creating events here.
Facebook events allow you to connect to your fans easily, and they have the advantage of being on a social network with an very large and active user base. Facebook gives you the ability to control whether the event is public (anyone can see and join/attend) or private. In either case, you can invite specific fans as a way to give them a heads-up on the event. It is a good idea to regularly promote the event on your Facebook page in so that it stays in the news feed of your fans.
Facebook events can be synced to other calendars, including the very popular Google Calendar, but it is done through a multiple-step process of exporting and importing. This could be seen as a downside to those using other calendars and non-Facebook apps on mobile phones, particularly Android users. Unless the user has synced it to their calendar, you’ll have to rely on their use of the Facebook app and settings for reminders to give them a heads-up.
Why Use Facebook: Facebook is still the most heavily populated and used social media network. More people will hear about your event on Facebook, since they’re already there.
Use Google+ Events
Google+ Events are brand new, freshly announced at the end of June 2012. It’s unique as an events-planning solution in that it encourages activity before, during, and after an event.
You can easily set up an event in the left sidebar of your Google+ homepage. The extremely intuitive interface helps you choose the look of the event, and the level of information (ticket seller URL, YouTube URL, etc.) you want to provide guests. Google+ Events can also be online events only, either as a Hangouts, or as an “on-air” (public) event. Event attendees can upload photos and videos during the event if they have the Google+ mobile app and have it set to ‘Party’ mode. Attendees can also upload photos after the event and attach them to the event. For attendees who accept invitations or decide to go, the event is automatically added to their Google Calendar.
You can find out more about Google+ Events here.
The downside to all of this, of course, is that Google+ has a smaller user-base. You may still find that most of your fans exist over on Facebook. Additionally, just like with Facebook, you’ll want to promote your event on Google+ to keep in your fan’s feeds.
Why Use Google+ Events: As a business owner, your Google Place page is already in Google+. While the user-base on Google+ is smaller than on Facebook, the number of people using Google maps and making Google searches online and on cell phones will land them on your Google+ page at some point. Plus, the interface is super-smooth and easy, and integrates seamlessly with other Google products. It’s just a matter of getting users on Google+.
The Best Solution For Events
Which is the best solution for your event? Use all three.
Use Twitter to build the interest and excitement. Put your event on both Facebook and Google+ and hook all of your customers on the social network they prefer. That’s the best way.
And don’t forget to invite the dogs in the party hats.