In today’s digital age, virtual events have become increasingly popular as a way to connect with audiences around the world. With the widespread use of social media platforms, promoting events online has become an effective way to increase engagement and attendance.
However, creating a successful social media marketing strategy can be overwhelming and confusing, especially for those new to the digital marketing world.
This article provides a step-by-step guide on how to promote virtual events on social media. Whether you’re planning a small webinar or a large-scale virtual conference, the steps outlined here will help you leverage the power of social networking sites to promote your event and attract a wider audience.
Understand Your Audience
Knowing your target audience is the key to effectively engaging them with your promotional efforts. You can start with the basic details like location, age, and profession, then work your way to more specific information like their goals, motivations, and online habits.
Understanding their interests and determining if they align with the purpose and goals of your virtual event will help you with the production of the virtual event and developing the right content later on.
This data will also guide you in creating promotional strategies that will encourage your target audience to engage and respond.
Choose the Right Platform
Nothing is stopping you from promoting your event on all social media platforms. However, this part requires a lot of time and effort since audience demographic and marketing strategies vary for each channel.
For instance, data shows that Facebook’s highest number of daily active users are from the Asia-Pacific aged 35 to 44 years old. That means your marketing methods and content must cater to the interests of this demographic to effectively promote your virtual event. The same sentiment goes for other social networking sites with different demographics.
Remember that you don’t necessarily need to focus on one platform just because the majority of your target audience is there. You can still promote on other channels as long as your content and marketing strategies align with the specific interests and needs of that platform’s audience.
Create Your Event Page
Now that you’ve understood your audience and determined the platforms you’ll use for your social media promotion, it’s time to establish your event page. This channel enables you to reach and engage with your target audience to persuade them in exploring your virtual event.
Your event page should contain relevant information such as the date and time, agenda, guests, highlights, sign-up links, and other things that attendees should know. You can opt to develop a dedicated website with attractive visuals or create pages on the social media platforms you want to use for the promotion.
Using your organization’s existing platforms is also a good option, although it may cause mix-ups and confusion on the audience’s side since these channels will likely contain information unrelated to your virtual event.
Develop Eye-catching Content
The next step to promoting your virtual event is creating and posting content. This strategy builds up excitement among your audience as it provides them with the information they need.
Release these details in small segments or teasers. It can be a cryptic post related to what the event is about, the event schedule, a sneak peek behind the preparations, highlights of past events, interviews with prominent guest speakers, and an overview of what the audience can expect.
As exciting as it is to tell everyone all the details, it’s best not to do so to maintain people’s interest. Save the biggest surprises for the actual event day.
Moreover, ensure that your content materials are appropriate for the platform you will post them on. While you can use the same posters or promotional videos on different sites, other elements may not be as flexible.
For instance, the information-rich caption on your Facebook post may not apply to Twitter due to the latter’s shorter character limit.
Launch a Hashtag
Creating an official hashtag is another part of the content development stage. It reinforces the image of your event while also enabling you to monitor people’s opinions about it before, during, and after.
Keep the hashtag short, easy to spell, and specific to your event to ensure that it doesn’t get mixed up with unrelated content. They are not exempted from the character limit that social networking sites impose, which is why hashtags need to be as simple as possible.
A short hashtag is also easy to remember and more likely to trend compared to overly complicated ones. Additionally, you should use the hashtag in every post and material that you put out. Doing so encourages participants to include it in their posts and even establish a feeling of belongingness.
Optimize Your Content and Event Page
Search engine optimization (SEO) can help you in reaching a wider audience and connect with the right people, making it an important part of promoting your virtual event. Optimizing your event and its content means using keywords that enable it to rank high on search engines.
Those keywords should be well-researched to ensure that they are relevant to your event’s topic and are within the interest of your target audience. You can use planning tools like Google Ads or run a quick internet search to determine what those words and phrases are.
Include these keywords in various content such as promotional copies, titles, descriptions, URLs, and meta tags. Note that not all of them will work well in engaging your target audience, so make sure to frequently analyze their metrics to make necessary adjustments.
Encourage Guest Speakers and Sponsors to Promote Your Event
Influencer marketing is a powerful strategy that you should take advantage of in promoting your virtual event. Getting your guest speakers and sponsors to share it can increase the event’s reach and visibility to another audience.
By leveraging their networks and social media channels, these individuals can promote the event to their followers, who may not have been aware of it otherwise. Having guest speakers and sponsors announce their involvement with your virtual event also increases its credibility and further boosts interest.
Maximizing the networks and influence of these high-profile individuals is a cost-effective and powerful way to amplify the impact of a virtual event. This can then result in increased attendance, engagement, and ultimately, the success of the event.
Running advertisements is an effective way to reach a larger audience and generate interest in your virtual event. They can be targeted to specific demographics and interests, helping you reach your target crowd.
By using tools like Google Ads, YouTube Ads, and Facebook Audience Insights, you can increase brand exposure and drive traffic to the event website or social media page. Moreover, advertisements can be used to create a sense of urgency, encouraging potential attendees to register and attend the event.
By following the steps listed above, you can leverage social media to reach a wider audience and attract more attendees to your virtual event. The key is to use a data-driven approach and tailor your strategies to the unique interests and behaviors of each platform’s audience.
With a well-planned and well-executed social media marketing strategy, you can make your virtual event a success and engage with your target audience around the world.