Your conference is all set up and ready to go, but now you need an audience to fill those seats. Enter digital marketing. While conference management is very much about organising the logistics of an event. The build-up and promotions before the conference can make or break it. That is why we have put together a few ways you can leverage digital marketing and social media to get the most out of your conference.
 

Pre-event digital marketing

 
SEO is often overlooked and not considered but can be your best digital marketing tool. When you optimise your website with key search terms, you are making your website more discoverable. Thus, increasing the organic traffic to your site.
 
Stats show that 93% of online searches start from using a search engine. So, having a strong SEO strategy will improve the chances of someone visiting your site. In addition, it can make them aware and possibly interested in your conference.
 
It is important, however, to note that having a website is not enough. While it does bring in organic traffic, by using targeted email or targeted social media posts, you can reach the exact audience you require.
 
The correct demographic is considered. You can ensure your advertising is reaching those who would most likely attend your event. Narrowing your target group eliminates your communication from coming across as being spammy. Instead, it will appeal to the right people.
 
The power of social media is massive. There are many ways to utilise this tool to promote your event. The #hashtag is one of the best ways to build up, maintain, and track the momentum of your congress.
 
When you create a hashtag for your event you can use it to generate hype as your event nears. The more the hashtag is used, the more your event can be picked up as a trending topic for others to see.
 
Of course, check your hashtag is not already in use so that only posts about your event will show up when searched.
 
Creating a hashtag also makes it easier for people to find any info about the event in one place. Younger audiences often solely use social media to keep track of their upcoming events.
 

Going live

 
There is no better way to keep an audience engaged than by interacting with them. Audience engagement is a trend that has hit the events industry by storm.
It should be adopted by all-conference planners. You can encourage your audience to post during the event. Possibly, even incorporate the hashtag you established while promoting the meeting. One way to get an audience to post about your conference is by doing a live tweet session. This is when the whole audience tweets using a personalised hashtag. The person who tweets first with this hashtag can win a prize related to the meeting. Some likely many people came across your conference but were not able to make it.
Live streaming is a fantastic way to create a space for everyone to virtually attend the congress without missing out. You can also post these recordings after the event for your audience to view at a later stage. This is a great way to build momentum around your conference while it is happening, as well as once it is done.
 

Gaining momentum

 
Good conference management understands that it does not end once the conference is over. A well-run event has a long-lasting effect on attendees, so why not keep the buzz running online with social media or by email.
 
By reminding attendees of what they learnt and experienced, they may talk to others and share their experience, enticing attendance to future events.
 
You can even bring the hashtag back during this time and share what others have posted on social media about your event. By sharing content created by attendees, it can make them feel included in your event, allowing you the ability to forge a stronger connection or relationship going forward.
 

Where next?

 
Staying top of mind is tough when it comes to conference management. Keeping up with the fast pace in which digital trends are developing – in 2019 and beyond – is no easy feat.
 
Without proper digital marketing knowledge, you could be losing out on future opportunities. That is why having an experienced conference management team on your side may be the turning point for your next event.
 
 
At Congrex, we are professional association consultants providing flexible and integrated solutions. We strive to build forward-looking associations, so, if you need to achieve your objectives without losing long-term perspective, get in touch with us today.

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