10 Ways to Use Social Media to Promote an Event

Are you wondering how to promote an event with social media?

Whether you have a small local gathering or a large conference, social media can be used to get the word out in a powerful way.

In this article I’ll reveal 10 creative ways to use social media to increase your chances for a gangbuster event.

#1: Create Video People Will Share

Because events take place in person, they engage the senses in a way online content can’t.

Creating a stellar video with great visuals and sound can not only help drive people to your event, it also increases the chances people will want to share it with friends.

Check out this video from Social Media Marketing World 2013 for creative ideas.

Here are a few tips for creating a video:

  • Leverage it everywhere, including on your event page, in articles and with affiliates. Click here to see how we used it on our event page.
  • Host on Vimeo and YouTube. We host the video in both places to take advantage of the flexibilities of each platform—Vimeo’s branding control and YouTube’s access to a large audience.
  • Upload to Facebook. This maximizes your exposure on Facebook.
  • Focus on the value for attendees. In the above video, you’ll notice it is all about what folks will gain by attending.

#2: Give Away Tickets to Create Buzz

Nothing motivates people more than the opportunity to win something free! So why not give away a ticket or two for your event to really amp up the buzz?

Contests provide a rapid way to generate interest in your event—especially if you have the right prizes.

win free smmw tweets
Here’s a sample from the thousands of folks who wanted to win free tickets to Social Media Marketing World.

Here’s how we do our contests:

We start with a blog post where we describe the prize (the event!) and then how to participate.

free tickets smmmw
Here’s what a free ticket contest can look like.

In the post, we invite people to participate in one of two ways: first is through a tweet contest and second is through commenting on the blog post by answering a question we’ve asked. For example “What is your greatest social media challenge?”

Here are some tips on contests:

  • Recruit judges who will help extend the reach of the contest.
  • Keep the requirements super-easy to maximize participation. For example, a simple one-click tweet to enter is ideal.
  • Run your contest at a time that will be helpful to your sales cycle.
  • If you have a podcast, consider creating a special episode explaining the contest.

#3: Socialize Your Google Ads

Are you using Google AdWords to promote your event? Do you have a Google+ page?

If so, you can actually add social proof to your paid Google ads. This increases the credibility of your ads.

socialize google ads
Notice how this ad for Social Media Marketing World showcases how many people follow our Google+ page.

You can add social proof to your Google ads by going under Ad Extensions and selecting Social Extensions from the drop-down menu. Here is an article on how to do this.

Written by

Chris Piper is the Founder and President of CPMarketing. CPMarketing advises companies with their digital business strategies, brand management and online reputations.