Integrated Alliances (IA) started life in 2003 a a B2B networking events company. It was the same year LinkedIn launched and years before the term Social Media was even coined. IA still hosts a large Holiday event every year and each of these techniques is used to promote the event that is now in it’s 10th year.
Besides hosting the occasional event now and then, we have a little extra experience:
- 200 B2B networking events held
- 1,000 B2B networking events attended
- 500 LinkedIn Workshops and Webinars taught/held
We learned a lot of things along the way, used a lot of registration systems, build a lot of events on Social Media platforms. This is a short listing of ways to promote your event, promote your Webinar, promote your workshop to the general public and to specific sets of individuals.
Look for each of these 10 areas to be expanded to be expanded upon individually, some with fancy videos and all.
1. Select/Build a Registration Site
Build the registration for the event on an online event platform. We like EventBrite best, although there are many others that work well. In EventBrite you can specify a custom URL so it is easier to remember and promote. EventBrite has many social hooks for attendees to promote the event and they can send reminders to registrants.
2. Get a Pretty .com Domain
Buy a “vanity” domain name to use for the event. Think about one you can reuse. It will be redirected to the registration site (e.g. EventBrite) or to an information page (e.g. landing page on web site). We use www.DenverHolidayParty.com over and over each year for example. We could not use DenverHolidayParty2009.com over and over.
3. Write Tight Event Language/copy
Develop short and medium versions of the text describing the event. This will be used as a basis for posting information elsewhere. Keep it in a word processor. Use short tight copy with bullets and abbreviations. Customize the base text for the platform you are using it on.
4. Gather and Select Pictures and Graphics
Get some pictures and graphics together, including a logo. Event pictures are great. People enjoying themselves, people enjoying you, some pictures of you at an event “doing what you do” on stage.
5. Use the LinkedIn Events Application
LinkedIn has an application called Events that shows the events you are attending right on your LinkedIn profile. It is NOT one of the better apps., but it will give you better exposure. You can point to the event from the LinkedIn app.
6. Build the Event on LinkedIn
Build the event on LinkedIn. Use the prepared language and list the vanity URL as the web site. Make sure you and everyone you know visits the event and says they are attending. YOU MUST DO THIS.
7. Do a Blog Post
Create a blog post on your the event. Blogs are loved by everyone especially Google. It should have a “Featured Image” in the body. A WordPress Blog can be shown directly on your LinkedIn profile, some other blogs can appear there as well.
Point to the blog post from the LinkedIn profile status update, LinkedIn Company Page and LinkedIn group discussions.
8. Use LinkedIn Status Updates – often
Develop LinkedIn Status update language, 3-4 different variants for Personal Profile and 3-4 variants for Company Page (if you have one). Each highlights one thing you will learn or experience. All have a URL.
9. Create Discussions in LinkedIn Groups
Put an announcement about the event in LinkedIn groups. If you contact the group manager they might even feature the event. You want your event to be listed in the general discussions in most cases. You do NOT want your event to be listed in Promotions. People just don’t look there – its kinda’ like being on page 5 of a Google search. Nobody looks there.
When posting always use a URL. You might point to the registration site or you may point to a blog post about the event. Either way, images will appear from the post or site and you can choose one.
It is VERY important for the discussion post to LOOK BEAUTIFUL. Really striking.
Try and get other people to like it and comment on it. Ask a few close personal friends to get it started for you.
10. Sending Messages to Tier 1’s and Group Members
LinkedIn will let you send up to 50 messages to tier 1 connections at one time. For virtual events you might send to them all. For targeted events you target the recipients.
10+1 Use Twitter Tools to Schedule Tweets
Since LinkedIn interfaces with Twitter it gets covered. While it is tempting to ‘Tweet” your LinkedIn Status Update, you may want to rethink that. LinkedIn gives you lots of space and Twitter does not. This leads to ugly truncated text. The registration link may not make it to the tweet as a result.
Twitter should be used independently of LinkedIn to post in its native manner. We like to use tools like HootSuite so we can schedule promotional tweets well in advance and can repeat them easily.
Related Posts – Integrating LinkedIn with Live Networking Events
For more information about using LinkedIn to promote events or for other revenue generating purposes, reach out to Mike O’Neil at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 303-683-9600.