People love to tweet about conferences and whether you are capturing the tweets or not, people will be tweeting about your event: before it happens, while it is happening and even afterward. Let's check our complete guide for Twitter!
A) Before Your Events
1) Pick a Hashtag
The most important thing you need to do is pick a hashtag for your event and promote it.
The hashtag which you select should be:
- Not Already Taken
If you start engaging an audience on Twitter early enough, potential attendees can even help you shape the event itself. After all, you're organizing an event for attendees, so why not ask them what they would like to see from your event, what topics that they want to hear addressed, what's important to them in terms of sustainability, and so on.
If your event is an annual event, you need to decide whether to attach the year to your hashtag or not. Your hashtag should be unique to the event.
Once you've picked the hashtag, you may also activate a tweet archive for that hashtag and with an active archive, you can rest assured that you won't miss a tweet with that hashtag in it.
You should announce your hashtag officially, and do it early. Otherwise, attendees will often take it upon themselves to create one, and you could end up with two or three different versions, which makes it more difficult to track engagement.
There are lots of things you can do to promote the hashtag and start getting value out of it before the event:
2) During registration: At the conference registration process, provide a mechanism to allow the attendee to tweet that he/she is going to the conference, automatically inserting the hashtag for them.
3) In communication with attendees: In emails sent to attendees before the show starts, encourage them to tweet about the conference using the hashtag.
4) On the conference website: On the conference website's session pages, encourage attendees to tweet what sessions they are excited about.
5) Have speakers use the hashtag: Your speakers are your ambassadors. Let your speakers know about the hashtag.
B) During Your Events
During your event, Twitter can be a great back-channel conversation about how the event is going. Again, it is important that attendees know the hashtag to use, so make sure it is posted on signage around the conference and on the speaker's opening and closing slides.
Once the conversation gets going, you can bubble up the conference. Here are some ideas:
6) Display the top user visualization as a leaderboard: People love gamification and leaderboards. By displaying the Top User visualization, you can start a (friendly) competition for who tweets the most at the conference.
7) Promote the Top Words Visualization: Top Words visualization is a beautiful word cloud of what people are tweeting about. It often captures the themes of a conference quite compellingly.
8) Capture pictures with the Top Images Visualization: If your attendees attach images to their tweets, they will be displayed in the Top Images visualization.
9) Capture pictures with the Top Images Visualization: Did someone famous tweet about your conference? Use the influencer index to find out!
It is worth noting that when you embed the visualizations in a webpage, they auto-update once an hour. So, you put a visualization up on a monitor and attendees can always see the latest.
C) After Your Events
The event doesn't stop when the event stops. There is plenty more interaction to be had, especially when it comes to Twitter. Here are some things you can do after your event:
10) Post a blog post about the event: Give your top takeaways or even do an embedded tweet post where you showcase some of the best Tweets.
11) Reach out to your new "connections" via Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook by retweeting their blog posts.
12) Keep engaging in lists and groups.
13) Remember to offer valuable content and not ask, but to give your help, expertise, and content without expectation of anything in return.
14) Be sure to share the posts of others, if you don't write a post after the event.
15) Keep an eye on the main event hashtag for a few weeks after – the buzz will continue!
16) Scour the tweets for attendee complaints: When you find a complaint, tweet the attendee back and/or use the data for improving your conference next time.
17) Find out what you did well: Discover trends on what attendees liked about the show.
18) Figure out who your influencers are: The Top Users chart and Influencer Index chart are mechanisms to find the most vocal and most influential people tweeting about your conference. Reach out to them so that they are in your campaign!