Social media for trade shows – or rather effective social media marketing means taking the proper steps before, during, and after the show. To ensure you cross everything off your social to-do list, refer to the following checklist:
- Create a calendar for event marketing.
- Work with your designer to conceptualize any infographics, Twitter cards, Pinterest Pins, social display ads or other visuals for your campaign.
- Add your event to your email signature.
- Create an event page on LinkedIn, Facebook, and/or Eventbrite, as well as on your own website.
- Submit the event to the relevant directories, so that it shows up ASAP in listings.
- Create a highlight reel from last year’s event, and upload it to your YouTube channel. This can also be repurposed for Facebook and Instagram, and used a teaser for the next event.
- Find out what the show’s official hashtag will be, and come up with your own company hashtag.
- Designate a social media leader to be the primary voice and driver for your messaging.
- Commit to doing X posts per day/week on each of your social platforms
- Amplify your updates via promoted posts, tweets, and updates to reach new, lookalike audiences
- Send a LinkedIn InMail to prospects you’d love to see at the conference and expo, to alert them to your attendance.
- Upload any and all email lists to AdWords, Facebook, and LinkedIn, and create Custom Audience campaigns to serve display ads to just these people.
- Participate in any discussion groups on LinkedIn that are relevant to your event.
- Start following the show hashtag several weeks in advance to stay up to date on what’s trending.
AT THE SHOW
- Use Facebook live to capture and webcast the most exciting moments as they occur.
- Use photos of attendees in your social updates. ID the people (with their permission) to encourage social sharing and interaction.
- Utilize HootSuite or another social scheduler to post on your behalf when you are busy at the show.
- Use the Twitter @ sign to engage directly with your sponsored speakers or other known social brand champions in attendance.
- Engage in social listening to see what topics and events attendees are interested in. Respond to other attendee questions, rather than just inviting people to come to your booth.
- Go through any leads you gathered, and connect with those people on LinkedIn, follow them on Twitter, or like their business page on Facebook.
- Follow up with your leads and connections via email.
- Post an event summary on your blog, with photos of the show highlights.
- Create and share a Twitter Moment of the event highlights.
Most importantly, nurture your social leads and build your network year-round, rather than being a fair-weather user. Effective social media usage means being an active and engaged part of your social community!