Twitter is more than just a space to chat, share pictures of your food and see what your friends are doing. It’s also a fantastic tool to promote your conference, raise awareness of your subject matter, encourage and facilitate conversation and stay in touch with your delegates long after the actual event is over.
So how do you effectively use social media to enhance your conference?
Make sure everyone has access to WiFi
It may sound obvious, but make sure to include WiFi usernames and passwords in any delegate packs or information you hand out. That way, you can make sure that everyone is connected and can participate in online discussion.
Set up a hashtag
Set up a hashtag for your delegates to follow, make sure your chosen hashtag isn’t already in use and avoid using specific locations and years so that you can use the hashtag in the future. For example, #eatinghealthyconf would have more longevity than #royalhollowayeatinghealthy or #eatinghealthy2014. Make sure that everybody knows about the hashtag in advance by including it in any pre-event information, and use it yourselves to encourage others to follow suit.
Give your delegates incentives to tweet
As well as cultivating an engaging conversation on Twitter, give your delegates an added incentive to spread the message far and wide. A discounted delegate rate, a product or even a voucher or prize for the best tweet and follow will encourage people to get involved for a minimum outlay and increase your Twitter fan base.
Display incoming Tweets
You can set up a Twitter stream through a projector so that all of the latest hashtag discussion is displayed in real time to your delegates. Make sure you let everyone know that their tweets may be shown on the screen.
Keep the conversation going
Don’t lose valuable connections just because your event is over. Stay in touch with your delegates by interacting with them regularly on Twitter, posting photos and any media coverage resulting from the conference and continuing to use the designated hashtag.