For over a decade social media has been connecting people online through their screens. According to the Smart Insights Global Digital Report 2018, there are 3.196 billion social media users worldwide, up 13% from last year. With more people than ever online, it is important to understand how to properly leverage social media to promote your live event.
There are so many outlets that an event marketer can use to get the word about their event out there. The 16 most popular social media networks as determined by monthly active users are Facebook with 2.2 billion users, Youtube with 1.9 billion, WhatsApp with 1.5 billion, Facebook Messenger with 1.3 billion, WeChat with 1.03 billion, Instagram with 1 billion, QQ with 803 million, Qzone 548 million, Tik Tok 500 million, Sina Weibo 431 million, Twitter 335 million, Reddit 330 million, Linked 303 million, Baidu Tieba 300 million, Skype 300 million, and Snapchat 291 million. With so many popular platforms it can be hard to determine which ones can be the most effective. Then once you choose one, each of them also has so many features that it can be difficult to know how to utilize all the aspects of each network to your advantage.
Facebook is the most popular social media and it is one of the most diverse. Over 1.6 billion users are connected to a small business on this network. Also it is estimated that users spend an average of 41 minutes per day on the Facebook app. One can virtually do anything on the platform. From sharing a link to your website to creating live behind the scene videos, the content that can be shared is endless. Facebook also makes it easy for others to share your content, allowing the event to reach an even larger audience. Having a page for your festival is important but creating an event or group can really take engagement to the next level and boost awareness about your it therefore increasing attendance.
Instagram is another platform that has a lot of options when it comes to marketing an event. Over 200 million users visit a business profile every day. This year the app even added a button where fans can buy tickets directly from an Instagram page. On this platform the story feature can be a quick and easy way to engage with users more actively. If your page has enough followers (10,000) you can even post links directly in the stories using their swipe up feature.
Leverage Pages for Ticket Sales
Before utilizing the fantastic features of these platforms it is key to ensure that the page you create includes all the necessary links and tools to funnel viewers to purchase tickets. The most important thing to remember is ease of use. The more easy it is for a fan to buy a ticket the more likely they will. It is critical that your purchase platform is optimized for mobile since many use these social media websites via mobile applications on their phones. Also ensure you are putting a link to the purchase page, not just your website in plain site. Fortunately, Facebook and Instagram both have a “Get Tickets” button that is easy to set up. Eventbrite has worked very closely with Facebook to make this process as simple as possible for users.
“Eventbrite allows you to sell tickets to your events directly on Facebook— to capture your audience where they spend their time,” Facebook Event’s Product Marketing Manager,
Virginia Maloney says to Eventbrite. “People are no longer redirected from Facebook to a ticketing page to buy or register for your event. Instead, their payment information is pulled directly into Facebook’s checkout, making it easier and more likely that they complete their order.”
Using Facebook Events to Sell More Tickets
The Facebook Events has changed the way that marketers can use this platform. Now people are not just going on it to see cute pictures of their friends cats or read politically charged statuses from a distant uncle, they are using it to create their social calendars. From hosting events of their own to see what’s going on nearby, Facebook has created a new way for communities to connect online by finding things to do in person. Now live events can use that ecosystem to promote their events.
“Anyone that isn’t using Facebook Events in the music industry is missing out on a huge opportunity. Creating an event on Facebook is the first thing we use when we promote our concerts. It is one of the best ways to fulfill our mission, which is to bring awareness to emerging local artists to the New York community.” Morgan Schafner, marketing manager at Ad Hoc Presents, tells to Eventbrite.
Another great thing about this feature is that users can see events their friends are going to as well as ones they plan to attend themselves. This means that your reach not only includes your followers but also their network as well. Creating an event page for your concert or festival is an important marketing tool. Remaining active on that page is also important. Year over year, Facebook events has seen a 40% in engagement. Utilize dynamic content in the Facebook event page like photos, videos, or even going live.
“We post once or twice a day on the Event page.” Joan Rosenberg, the director of marketing for Maker Faire, tells Eventbrite. “Our posts are a mix of schedule announcements, engaging news articles, reposts, and features on the makers and presenters who exhibit at our flagship fairs. We try to keep themessaging fresh and not just focus on ourselves.”
This creates an opportunity to not only market your event but also a chance to build a deeper connection with future attendees. This can lead to more engaged guests who spend more and come back year after year. Having an event page or group can also serve as a forum for attendees. They can ask questions, bond with others, and feel more like a community is forming around the event.
Using Facebook Groups to Increase Event Attendance
The Facebook algorithm favors conversation building and community over passive posting. This means that businesses need to find more ways to interact with their audience rather than just pushing information out them. One way to accomplish this is through the use of Facebook groups. This can be done by creating a group around your event or participating in other similar groups.
Those who attend music festivals utilize groups to organize meetups, plan outfits, ask questions, resell tickets, coordinate travel, share memes and other activities within various groups. Creating a group is a great way to foster a community amongst attendees. It also give event marketers an opportunity to share information about the event, engage with guests, answer questions, and overall connect more with festival goers. The group can also be a great platform to attract new attendees. An active and engaging group can help tip the scale for a potential ticket buyer.
There are many ways to engage within a Facebook group without directly selling the event. Hosting challenges, offering exclusive updates, hosting giveaways, offering unique rewards to group members, and loyalty codes for pre sales for group members are all ways that an event organizer can create buzz in a group. An event can even have a Facebook group just for ambassadors to help motivate them and keep them excited and engaged throughout the sales process. After the event, the group can be a great place to share photos and stories of their experience at the event. It can be used year round to foster a community and create loyal attendees that attend year after year. You can also invite members from your group to your Facebook event, driving even more traffic to the event page.
Not only is creating a Facebook group useful but participating in others can be just as beneficial. Other groups represent an opportunity to expose your event to larger audience. This gives more chances for the event page to be seen by others and creates a relationship with the community in which you are trying to attract. This is a great place to generate new ticket buyers from other sources.
Using Instagram Stories to Increase Ticket Sales
Instagram stories are a dynamic, interactive, 24 hour posts that live events can leverage to connect to their audience and drive ticket sales. These can be leveraged in two ways, the content that the event page makes itself and the content that attendees make can both be very powerful.
There are several way that event marketers can get creative with Instagram stories. When creating content be sure that the first few seconds are exciting and engaging. This is the time when you have to hook the audience into continuing to watch your story. Getting creative with the various features is a great way to get the viewer to engage with the post. Adding a poll that asks a question, inviting viewers to submit question, adding a sticker that allows the viewer to rate the picture, and adding a link that swipes up are all ways to make the story more interactive. Live video can also be done via Instagram stories. When a page goes live, its followers are notified, putting that page in front of everyone immediately. This can be a fun time to give everyone a sneak peak of the venue, a special behind the scenes tour, or exclusive interview. It can also be done during an event to attract those who didn’t attend this year to put it on their radar for next. Stories can also be a great place to reveal an artist or speaker lineup. They can be a great place to build hype by posting pictures of blurred out lineups or play guessing games with the audience. As mentioned, there is a feature that allows you to allow viewers submit questions. This can serve as a Q&A session where they can get questions answered that also lets you gauge what kind of concerns future guests have.
A new feature they recently added is that if a user tags your page in their Instagram story then you can easily repost it. Given that an Eventbrite survey found that four out of five millennials enjoy seeing other people’s experience on social media this can be a powerful tool. User generated content is a great way to drive engagement on your page as well as reach new audiences. By encouraging your audience to share their experience, tag your page, and utilize a specific hashtag, you can generate a lot of reusable content without having to do much work.
There are several ways to motivate guests to post about their time at the event. One way is to host a contest where they have to share a photo or video from the event and tag their friends in order to be entered. Encourage all partners, artist, speakers, vendors, workshop organizers, volunteers, and others involved tag you in posts and use the chosen hashtags. Ensuring that your grounds are photo worthy and “viral” is another way to boost your user generated content.
Social media is a powerful tool when it comes to marketing and event. Utilizing the right tools and features can help convert online audiences into ticket buyers. The key is to know the right way to creatively maximize engagement on these platforms. Facebook is by far the most popular, with the most active users of any other social network, and also has some of the most useful features. Properly using an event page and group can increase your events awareness. Ensuring that you have the proper links and utilize the “Buy Now” button can push ticket purchases to new levels. Instagram has a similar button that can be added to profiles and if you have enough followers you can add a link to your stories. Instagram stories can be a dynamic and unique way that event marketers can engage with potential attendees. Creatively using this feature as well as those that Facebook offers can really set an event apart and drive ticket sales when done properly.