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The Top Three Ways to Leverage Social Media for Effective Engagement with Event Participants

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This guest blog post is from Tallen Technology Rentals, a sponsor of the 11th Anniversary Pharmaceutical Meeting Professionals’ Summit.

Meeting planners in pharmaceutical and life sciences can benefit immensely from a practical understanding of key aspects of social media, including how to effectively leverage social media to promote events as well as increase engagement and lead generation during and after meetings.

Pre-Event Promotion

Good event marketing strategies encompass a range of mediums and channels. That said, as a baseline starting point, every meeting and conference should create an individual presence on all the major social media platforms well before the date of the event. Creating an event page on Facebook, an event hashtag for Twitter and a group on LinkedIn are all best practices. Unfortunately, many planners stop there. The key to leveraging these various platforms is to go beyond simply posting event updates and sharing relevant information here and there. Consistent engagement and interaction with the event’s target audience over the various social channels is crucial. Planners and event stakeholders need to create pre-event buzz by actively prompting discussions, asking questions, and arranging meetups and connections at the event. In order to foster situations where this happens organically, planners should connect with the community influentials, thought leaders and evangelists, and prompt them offline to ensure they cross-pollinate the event’s relevant sub-communities within the pharmaceutical and life sciences industry. They can do this by sharing their pre-event excitement and a shared sense of purpose with their audiences (generally the same people the event planners want to reach) on their own social media profiles.

Generating Awareness Onsite

As with pre-event promotion, using social media to reach and engage with the key influencers during the course of the event will help generate awareness for the event and the brand of the event owner, as well as the issues on the meeting agenda. Leveraging social media onsite will also help drive increased awareness for the various brands that sponsor the event. From a tactical perspective, look at opportunities with mobile check-ins, event hashtags and gamification. Over the past two years incorporating live broadcasts over the web reached the point where, in 2014, we saw it become very much commonplace in a live meeting setting. Live streaming over social media is a trend meeting planners should watch closely in the coming year. Consider the recently launched live streaming app Periscope. Periscope, which launched in March 2015 and had 10 million accounts as of August, lets anyone broadcast live video by instantly notifying followers, who can join and comment in real time.

Maintaining Engagement Post-Meeting

Social media offers multiple opportunities to keep delivering the meeting’s messages to the audiences, in many cases, long after the event has wrapped. In fact, many annual events are able to use social media to maintain and engage with virtual groups throughout the year. Also, the event hashtags are effective as long as people are using it, and quite often this extends for months afterwards. Once the marketing and planning for the next year’s meeting gets underway, the meeting owners will be able to immediately leverage a ready-made community. Additionally, analyzing post-meeting social media conversations is extremely valuable. That same attendee who may never fill out evaluation forms might happen to be an active participant on social media and could be eager to post and comment on an event’s LinkedIn and/or Facebook pages.

There are a plethora of ways in which social media can be leveraged to reach audiences; raise awareness; drive sales; change opinions; and promote an event experience, before, during and after meetings. The right strategy, combined with expert tactical execution, will translate into tangible and significant value. We based these observations on feedback we’ve solicited from our many clients in the pharmaceutical and life sciences meetings industry, and we would love to hear your thoughts. Join Tallen’s CEO Andy Taffin at the 11th Anniversary Pharmaceutical Meeting Professionals’ Summit as he moderates a panel discussion titled “INNOVATIVE TOOLS AND TECHNOLOGIES: Advancing Meetings, Engaging Participants and Optimizing Education Through Innovative Tools and Technologies,” on day two of this event – Thursday, November 5, 2015 — from 9:00 to 9:45 am. Visit the online registration page or call (866) 207-6528 to reserve your seat.

About Our Company

Tallen Technology Rentals delivers unrivaled audiovisual and production services, spectacular customer care and a passion for our client’s message. Tallen is consistently vetting new and exciting technologies so we can empower our clientele with cutting-edge production resources to improve their event. Tallen’s commitment to customer service has enabled the company to successfully deliver over fourteen thousand events worldwide each year.

Tallen Technology Rentals is a proud sponsor of ExL Pharma’s 11th Anniversary Pharmaceutical Meeting Professionals’ Summit, taking place November 4-5, 2015 at the Hyatt at the Bellevue in Philadelphia, PA.

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