Events are inherently social, and word of mouth marketing is incredibly important to your event’s success. Eventbrite gives you a powerful toolset to help you support and inspire buzz for your event, but we spoke with Andy Sernovitz, author and word of mouth marketing guru, to get his top five tips to get people talking about your conference:
1. Give presenters plenty to talk about
Your presenters, speakers, exhibitors — they all want to see your event succeed, and they make for great talkers because they’re probably already connected to the audience you hope to attract. Give them plenty of discounts, banners, blurbs, and logos to share with their fans leading up to the event. Help presenters to say more than “I’m speaking at this event” by interviewing them about the ideas they’ll share, inviting them to participate in a preview webinar, or maybe through something as simple as sending them a funky T-shirt.
2. Help your attendees share
Before the event, send registered attendees a friendly, polite suggestion to tell friends about your conference. It doesn’t have to be complicated — a simple event summary, links to some of your speakers’ interviews, or a little discount can be enough for them to forward it to co-workers and friends.
3. Give talkers passes to give away
Businesses and industry bloggers that your potential attendees follow are great at hosting contests to build buzz for your conference. And because the giveaways help them generate excitement for their content, these influencers generally love to help out.
4. Make it easy to share at the event
Just because registration has closed doesn’t mean the word of mouth has to stop. Encourage people to talk about your event online using a few social media tools like an official hashtag for Twitter (which helps organize all event tweets) and a Flickr group where attendees can post photos.
5. Follow up
Keeping the buzz simmering after an event makes it easier when it comes time to open registration for your next big show. Drip out videos from presentations, post recaps and takeaways, and invite speakers to participate in follow-up calls or webinars to expand on their big ideas from the conference.
Andy Sernovitz is the author of Word of Mouth Marketing: How Smart Companies Get People Talking and is CEO of GasPedal, a company that teaches word of mouth to brands of all sizes.