Countless event planners have discovered the many benefits to sharing details on social media; it’s quick, it’s easy, and most importantly, it’s free. But, there is a difference between using it and using it well. Just having a profile or event page isn’t going to cut it. Likewise, there are some actions that seem positive, but can actually hinder marketing goals. Here are 5 mistakes planners are making on social media right now, and what should be done to fix it:
- Not having a social media team member
It’s hard enough to plan all of the ins and outs of your event. Now, try adding social media on top of your list of responsibilities. There’s no way it can get the attention it deserves. It may not seem super important, but provided all the opportunities social media gives for before, during, and even after, you can guarantee losing it will create a loss in your event.
What you should do: Assign one or two people to be in charge of all social media accounts. This should take place early in the planning process, as well as creating a social media plan, with a timeline of 9 months out to 1 month after the event. Having a dedicated person isn’t enough if they are posting willy-nilly. Changes can be made, but there should be a general timeline of what types of content should be posted when. TIP: try finding a younger person that has plenty of social media experience. I’m sure there is someone in your church that will know what to do.
- Ignoring interactions
It’s called “social” media for crying out loud. Part of the experience is interacting. Guests who put in the effort to reach out to your event, whether through tagging, reviewing, commenting or liking, will be very discouraged to know their communication efforts were in vain. Why would you post this information if you didn’t want their input on it?
What you should do: Respond to ALL notifications. This means good and bad. As quickly as possible. All the more reason to have someone dedicated to the event’s social media presence.
- Not using it DURING the event
Most people seem to think that social media is just an additional tool used to persuade people to partake in your event. But it is capable of so much more. Too many planners become so wrapped up in their event while it is happening that their profiles become checked out once guests have checked in.
What you should do: Remember that dedicated social media person we talked about earlier? They should be at the event taking pictures, posting updates and responding to questions and comments as they happen (which will be a lot, because people are there in the moment now, so they have to share with all their friends). Posts can be used to update parents on what is happening at youth camp, as well as informing non-attendees what they are missing out on. Or you could use it alongside the event, such as interactive polls and posts during meetings.
- Quantity over quality
A common misconception is that full feeds are better ones. Posting minor updates 10 times a day is not going to get them read. Instead, your event will become an online nuisance that requires too much time to read. And if even one post is deemed irrelevant, users might be hesitant to believe the rest of it is.
What you should do: Post quality content! Share videos, pictures, and updates that users both at the event and at home want to see. Provide important links, such as online registration, FAQs and venue website. A key thing to keep in mind before hitting the post button is, “How will this benefit users about my event?”. If you can’t come up with a good answer, you probably shouldn’t post it. A good rule of thumb is to post to Facebook and Instagram 1-2 times per day, and Twitter about 10 times per day. Going over either is sure to start overwhelming newsfeeds.
- Not live streaming
It used to be that only news teams could stream on the scene. But thanks to technology (and especially Facebook Live), users have become the reporters. However, not everyone has jumped into the practice.
What you should do: Make sure your social media guru knows how to use Facebook Live. Stream worship sessions and keynote speakers so that others can participate without being on site, as well as having them recorded for later viewing. There’s a pretty good chance this will motivate those people to come to your next event. You can also post little snippets of fun times, such as games and contests for a quick view of the fun.