As a former booking agent for a music venue, I tend to get excited about promoting events here at DragonSearch. Event promotion can very well be a part of your internet marketing campaign, and I have a keen eye for them. Time and time again I see people making the same mistake when creating event invites through social media. Events on popular social media, such as Facebook, have more or less become spam. With every day that passes, I seem to receive more event invitations than I can shake a stick at. (Who came up with that saying, anyway? Was stick shaking once a popular pastime?) Facebook events shouldn’t be viewed as an advertising tool. Instead, events should be used as a conversation piece. With a platform like Facebook, it’s easy to set up an event and invite hundreds of people, but what is often overlooked is the long term effect of constant broadcasting without audience engagement. Is your event reaching your target demographic? If not, how do you reach that specific audience?
Know Your Audience
Whether you’re a promoter, a band, or a small business, you should have an idea of who the people are you want to reach before you begin friend requesting. These people should have a relative interest in whatever service you’re providing. By recognizing this and proceeding cautiously when friend requesting, there’s a better chance that these people will add you as friends, and in turn are more likely to be interested in your event invitation. If you’re out there in Facebook world, just blindly friend requesting, you could be at high risk of gaining a reputation as a spammer. That’s the last think you want! This brings me to my next point:
Moderation, Moderation, Moderation
What do spammers do? They bombard you relentlessly. This is not what you want to do to your audience. Make sure to moderate your requests, updates, and especially your event invitations. As long as you’re providing content that is relevant and interesting to your audience, you don’t have to post the same thing five times a day. Repetitive posting can easily be compared to the child in the backseat of the car who constantly asks “Are we there yet?”. No matter how many times it’s said, the answer will remain the same, and it just becomes more and more irritating each time it’s uttered. Keep in mind that your audience is probably receiving invitations and updates from other accounts as well. Set yourself apart from the herd! Add something of value to your event. Make it unique. This can also be applied to your page’s daily updates. Remember: it’s not always about branding. It’s okay to talk about other things, as long as you do so in a respectable and positive manner. There is no room for negativity when it comes to selling yourself through social media.
“Come on out!” has to be the number one term I see used in event promotion on Facebook. If you want your audience to attend your event, you had better think of more interesting ways to promote it, besides saying “Come on out!” or “This is going to be sick!”. Let’s not forget that Facebook is a social network. Be social! Conversation is the best medicine. Ask questions, and give feedback. If someone has a question, answer it to the best of your ability. These people are your audience, and potential customers. Listen to them. Show them that you (and the brand you represent) are more than just a Facebook account. Trust me, people appreciate the authenticity. Get creative and use this approach to your event promotion, because honestly, “Come on out!” just doesn’t do it.
Creating an Experience
Some people might say that organizing an event IS creating an experience, but that isn’t what I’m referring to. As far as your event on Facebook is concerned, you need to create online experiences that your audience will want to be a part of. Maybe you can create a contest to win a ticket to your event, and as a requirement to enter the contest, you must RSVP to the event on Facebook. More than likely, you will gain more attendees. Guess what? When a Facebook user RSVPs to an event, that RSVP is posted in their news stream, and is broadcast to their friends’ news streams as well. Your event has just been broadcast to a wider audience than originally conceived. Of course, this is just a generic example. It’s up to you as an event creator to think of unique wants to get people to come to your events. Ivan Lajara (@ivanlajara), an editor at The Daily Freeman, retweeted an interesting article that discusses creating an experience for your customers. Interestingly enough, the article discusses strategies that internet marketing companies have been implementing for years. *Sigh* C’est la vie. When will people start listening to us?