The #summerglowsalon at 23 and 5th Ave is happening! pic.twitter.com/p3ccC7McpZ
— BeautyMVP (@BeautyMVP) June 18, 2014
What can your small business do to create newsfeed worthy events?
Events must be a significant component in any small businesses public relations plan. When joined with social media companies and brands may earn (social) media placement. Target’s recent #SummerGlowSalon event in New York’s Flatiron Plaza created awareness and got thousands of social mentions. The brand made news and trended. By creating their own news, they went directly to their consumers.
Free hair and nails at the #SummerGlowSalon from @Target I’m loving it pic.twitter.com/dyaYpu8ZaS
— Jessica Koby (@JaRealKoby) June 18, 2014
A new report from Vocus observes,
Events provide an interesting context. While events are a traditional tactic, they continue to be extremely worthwhile endeavors for both traditional and digital PR professionals. Seventy nine percent of PR, marketing and advertising agencies and 58 percent of nonprofit respondents surveyed rated events as successful distribution channels.
People can rally around live events. Photos, discussions and speeches provide fodder for online communication. Hashtags allow attendees to follow conversations and trends, and let PR professionals measure impressions, engagement and reach. Follow-up emails turn attendees and stakeholders into potential customers whose relationships can be nurtured through targeted and traditional marketing.
When planning social media worth events, consider your customers. Design the event to appeal to those who use social media. Create moments which have oomph for Instagram, re-tweetable quotes for Twitter and visually rich environments which compel guests to photograph and pin set-ups to Pinterest.
Have a specific goal or goals for the event. Identify the experience you want to create, the feelings you want attendees to experience, the stories you want them to take away.
Engage with your social media followers in the days leading up to your event to increase awareness of the event and the official hashtags. Remember when selecting your hashtags, you will want to be sure no one else is using that hashtag.
Consider delegating “reporter” duties to a staff member who can photograph, and capture content and to help make sure there is content streaming into newsfeeds.
Broadcast at the event by having screens with live feeds of event hashtags, photos and more. Services like Snapcastr allow you to bring everyone’s news feed into the event as an element.
The eyes have it—and experience events first
Don’t stint on your environment. Flowers, props and podiums will all find their way into the news feeds of attendees and their friends. Give them photo-worthy eventscapes to share. In Charleston, Mitchell Crosby of JMC Charleston worked with our public relations client Susan Hull Walker of Ibu Movement to create a luxe pop-up shop which set exactly the right tone for Ibu’s astonishing wares and wearables (see photo above).
Be engaging, not boring
Limit traditionally boring things like speeches. Instead, think theater, creating moments which not only entertain, but transmit essential brand messages.
Ribbon cuttings and Grand Openings are an old-fashioned tactic that still get eyeballs, but amping them up with unique opening activities provides memorable experiences.
When planning an auto service company grand opening, we staged a classic car show on the company lot, bringing in many enthusiasts to see amazing cars. And of course, they learned the location of the business in the process.
Put your imagination to work and you may be amazed with the creative ways to bring attention to your brand you dream up.
Having trouble dreaming up interesting events? Call us, we’re here to brainstorm and plan. And we’ll help you assemble a team to stage an incredible event.