5 ways to use social media for a profitable return on investment
As an athlete, I often attend and participate in sporting events and sports-related tradeshows on both a local and national level. I make it my business to pay attention to how the attendees are responding to the various offerings, and lately I’ve noticed a pronounced “advertising fatigue” among event goers. Today’s tradeshow and special events audiences have seen it all, which makes it harder and harder to break through all the noise and get their attention. It takes fresh, innovative thinking to stop them in their tracks and show them something they’ve never seen before.
Many people thought that the rise of digital media would make trade shows obsolete, but I have found that the two worlds go hand-in-hand. Digital media, and more specifically social media, offers opportunities to connect with your audience in a dynamic way before your event, so you know exactly what they are looking for. And it allows you to keep the conversation going long after the event is over.
You can also use social media to educate yourself and prepare a strategic plan before the big event by leveraging:
• the ability to see what your competitors are doing
• new ways to track what’s hot in your industry
• insights into how your competitors are interacting with attendees
• avenues for building new relationships
Here are a five more ways you can use digital media to maximize your health and nutrition marketing at tradeshows and other sporting events:
Blog about it
Blog about your upcoming event to build excitement with giveaways, teasers about who will be at your booth (such as professional athletes or other spokespersons), and special promotions. Discuss your involvement in the event. Also, blog after the event to keep a buzz going about what happened at your booth. Share photos of the winners of your giveaway or promotion, or, if it was a live sporting event, share the details of who competed and who won. Be creative. People get more excited about upcoming events when they feel they are personally involved.
Set up profiles and utilize social media platforms
Depending on the size of the event, you may want to set up a Facebook fan page, group page, or send out an invite from your company’s page. There are many ways to utilize Facebook correctly for the size of your event or product. Also set up a Twitter page for your event or on your company’s page. Add your booth number and any other relevant information that pertains to the event.
Be sure to use hashtags on any social media post (Twitter, Facebook, etc.) to improve search engine optimization related to the event. Hashtags are incredibly important for facilitating searches about your product, your booth and the event.
Make a video
Post videos to YouTube before, during and after your event. Before the event, your video may feature products or giveaways that will entice your audience. During the event you can take live footage. After the event, create a video that features highlights such as which of your products was the most popular and why.
Stay connected during your event
At the event, you’ll want to have someone in your booth constantly updating social media using your event hashtag. Offer incentives for people to check in at your booth on Facebook. Tweet special offers throughout the show using your event hashtag. Create a QR code at your booth that visitors can use to get more information about a specific product. It’s important to create an experience at your booth for the visitors.
These are just a few suggestions for leveraging social media to make your sporting event or tradeshow a success. Remember, it’s important to set up as many social media platforms as possible to be sure you reach all attendee’s, because you never know who is using what.
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Jessica is a competitive athlete and the President of Energize HNM, a health and nutrition marketing agency. Jessica is committed to supporting health brands of every size by helping them define their missions and connect with their customers on a deeper, more meaningful level.