How to engage fans before, during and after an event
In today's fast-paced business world it has become more and more difficult for brands to stand out from the crowd and engage their fans. Management is tasked with differentiating their brand from the competition and creating innovative ways of cutting through the noise. In this blog post Crowdsight assesses the best way of engaging fans before, during and after an event.
Social Media is an effective means of generating a buzz and atmosphere before your event. Posting a sneak-peak picture of your event setup is a great teaser to get people talking online. Similarly, revealing details of the event such as a music festival line-up can generate user engagement and drive earned media to support the event.
The use of Influencer’s to engage fans is an emerging marketing technique, however, successfully engaging influencers requires time. Creating shareable branded content that influencer’s can distribute on Social Media can leverage their followers and influence them into attending or endorsing your event.
During the 2016 Olympic games Coca-Cola targeted global influencers to spread #ThatsGold across the world. The list included influencers such as Australian superstars Cody and Alli Simpson, Canadian actress and blogger Allie Evans and British YouTuber Jake Boys. The influencers created engaging content portraying what #ThatsGold means to them whilst at the same time encouraging their followers to share their own personal moments on Social Media.
The digital takeover is well underway and brands are taking advantage by developing apps to coincide with their events taking place. One advantage of having a team or event app is the ability to send a real time push notification to its users. Push notifications can engage fans to take action or make them aware of one-off promotions. For example, a man of the match poll, weather notifications, health and safety updates or a meet the team event – the key here is timing and relevancy. The last thing an organisation wants is to pester users with notifications which will negatively affect event app adoption, therefore, keep push notifications relevant, precise and to the point.
A good example of this being implemented was during the 2014 NFL Super Bowl promotions. NFL sent location based push notifications to users of the app within the proximity of the stadium. The message itself is clear, offers value to the user and is specific. Kudos, NFL.
Showcase the event experience
We are seeing a turn where organisations are now marketing their event experience with less emphasis on the brand itself - social media being a main driver behind this. Social Media competitions allow your offline event to come online and enables followers that are not attending the event to see a narration or showcase of the occasion – perhaps inspiring them to attend the experience next time. The benefit of these competitions is that your brands reach is extended across Social Media and your supporters are building a long-term relationship with the organisation by recommending the event.
Business is not static, it’s fluid. Learn and adapt
Even after your event has finished, it doesn’t mean the social story has to stop. Smart organisations learn from data collected, develop a strategy and implement fan engagement techniques around it. Digital content such as 'after movies' are an affordable way to spotlight the event and engage fans that may have attended as well as those who have not. Music festivals have mastered this art and one prime example is Tomorrowland. The music festival released it’s after-movie just a few days following the festival on 5th August 2016 via YouTube and so far the video has over 5 million views! It’s a great example of how engaged fans can keep your event in the spotlight as they relive priceless moments.
Another way of reaching out post-event and getting users to engage is to utilise Email marketing. Email marketing can engage fans and build loyal relationships with users for the future. This can be in the form of a newsletter or simple ‘thank you for the support’. Encourage your fans to share the best content, review your event or perhaps fill out a questionnaire to suggest any improvements that they feel would benefit the event going forward.
The fact that engaged fans offer referrals and recommendations for a brand means that user engagement should be a key part of a brands strategy. Brand interactions create results that can be tracked by marketers, allowing both brands and sponsors to make better decisions and fine tune their business strategy based on data.
There, you have it! Get social, create appealing sharable content and be as targeted, customised and personalised as possible!