Crafting the Perfect #EventHashtag

Event Planners, we know you’ve heard time and time again, integrating social media into your event is one of the best ways to create buzz and interaction among attendees and online viewers. Using an event hashtag to lasso up all the conversations, shared photos, tweets, etc. centered around your event is the best way to collect and organize content into one location. We’ve already given you some tips on placing hashtags around your event space so your guests interact with them.  But then, it hits you. What the heck am I going to name my hashtag?

Certainly you can come up with something more creative than #EventNameYear. Okay, we’ll leave it as plan B. But don’t give up on coming up with a creative and engaging hashtag for your event before considering the following:

 

What’s the Goal of your Event?

Is this a fundraiser with a goal of raising a certain amount of money? Creating the hashtag to reflect this goal can constantly keep it in the face of your attendees in a subtle way (win.) For example, Children’s Miracle Network Hospital hosts events all over the country with the catchy, #FTK hashtag, meaning “For the Kids”. The goal of the event is translated into 3 simple letters, easy enough for anyone to understand and engage with.

Keep it Short and Sweet

Remember that tweets can only hold 140 characters, and those can be precious when crafting a thought that still needs to include the hashtag. Avoid making your hashtag a mouthful for your sake and your guests.

Reflect the Mood of the Event

If the event is for party people and is not so serious, make the hashtag something clever! Rhyming and alliterations are a go-to way to get creative. This strategy in crafting an event hashtag is typically seen in the wedding space, but who’s to say it can’t be utilized for product launches, internal meetings and so on. If you can stay on-brand and sprinkle some humor into your event’s content, you’ve immediately set yourself apart from the next company.

Do your Research

It is very unlikely you’re the first person to use the event hashtag you have in mind. Most likely, the hashtag has been used for a past event or general conversation, but don’t panic. Search the hashtag across social channels and see what arises from the depths of Twitter. If the hashtag is not tied to a competing event, inappropriate content, or is has not been used in a year or two, you’re in the clear. Own it.

 

Looking for a creative team that can simultaneously create compelling content and make sure your event goes off without a hitch? You’ve found us. Tweet us at @EastofEllie to say #hello!

Why Instagram is an Event Planner’s Secret Agent

As event professionals we’re all about visuals, so of course Instagram is one of our FAVORITE social channels.  A few weeks ago, Instagram’s Explore page changed, and a buzz started generating about the updates that completely redesigned Instagram as we know it.

Although these changes are complex and some prefer the simpler Explore page, event planners have reasons to be all over it.  The goal of these updates are to allow its users to easily find photos from all over the world.  With the breakdown of People, Tags, and Places along with trending tags and discover themes, Instagram is easier than ever to navigate.

So, what does this all mean for event planners? Our lives just got a bit simplier.

Why we love the Instagram updates:

Search is magnified.

1 2 3

WHAT HAPPENED: When searching on the new Explore page, Instagram now automatically merges accounts, hashtags, and location photos within your search.  All relevant photos are included in your stream of search criteria, so the range of your results are wider than ever before.

WHY WE LOVE IT:

  1. Because we are able to see more pictures in one stream, it help us visualize and have a better understanding of what will work before the on-site visit.  Whether we are looking for pictures of a certain venue or events with a rose gold color scheme, these updates help event planners see if their ideas will work in a particular setting.
  2. The magnified search also helps us find photos taken at our events or other industry events.  Whether an attendee used the official event hashtag or tagged the location, the photos will show up in one place, making it easier for event planners to gather post-event or gather inspo for their next.

 Trending tags

5 copy

WHAT HAPPENED: Trending tags is a quick and easy way to see what is trending around the world.

WHY WE LOVE IT: Event planners can see what is relevant to the event industry and post to their social media accordingly so they can be featured on the trending page.  This will increase exposure and followers.

Curated content

4

WHAT HAPPENED: The newest feature Instagram has released is the curated content pages that are displayed at the top of the Explore page.  These pages are created by Instagram employees that want to show the world unique content and themes which rotate twice a week.  These pages show new perspectives of the world, which inspires creativity and innovation.

WHY WE LOVE IT: For event planners, we are able to see some of the top locations around the world to keep in mind as locations or themes for future events.

Because of these updates, we find ourselves getting lost in the world of Instagram exploring all the amazing places now featured on the search page.  There’s truly nothing like stalking, or what we lovingly refer to as creeping in our offices, a venue on a social network…

Need a team that will search endlessly to find you the perfect venue?  Contact us today and let’s get planning!

 

 

Promoting Facebook Events

Facebook is one of the most important social media. It’s a great place to promote major events and get your audience involved. Creating events on Facebook are easy – but how do you make them stand out? EOE has found 3 easy steps to follow to promote your event the most effective way possible.

 

  1. Call to Action. Though attending an event is a call to action in itself, have ticket, registration and RSVP’s URLs available on your page. Also, make sure to capitalize all call to actions to make them standout.
  2. Be Specific. Be sure to specify time zones for your event because Facebook doesn’t show the time of your event. Also, if the event is taking place offline, give your Facebook users an address where to locate the venue. Even a map could help ensure guests make it to your event.
  3. Embellishments. Create two images that will engage your target audience and partygoers. These images are the first things that your attendees will see, so keep them interested. Make sure you allow for Q&A on your events page. It’s very important that users are able to verify unanswered questions and post of the event wall.

 

These three steps can help you successfully promote your event on Facebook. For those who enjoy visuals, check out our info graph for the three step break down.

5 Social Media Strategies Everyone Needs to Know

Social media is an effective tool for events and marketing campaigns. But there are essential tactics that will guarantee a successful campaign. EOE follows these 5 strategies and has seen their effectiveness;

 

Colour-social-media-icons-square1 Identify Social Channel. If you attempt to promote your event or campaign on a social medium that your intended audience isn’t using, you’re wasting time. Do some primary research to find which channel reaches your target market the best. An example is Facebook. Even though it is a major social media network, not all users are active, so it may not be your best option to promote your event.

 

Green calendar icon isolated on white Content Calendars.  You can’t post one time about an event or campaign if you want to be successful. Creating content calendars weekly or even monthly will help organize posts on all social media that you are using to promote your event to ensure exposure.

 

1341819744_2172_hash2Use Hashtags. A strong hashtag can help people discover your event. Hashtags are not limited to Twitter. They are an easy way for people to search for past tags and what is “trending.” If events create their own hashtags, attendees can promote the event as well when posting with your hashtag. See how to utilize hashtags at event through our past blog post.

 

Determine Top Influencers. At events, you will probably have key influencers. Follow their social media pages and interact. By engaging with them through sharing, retweeting and supporting their ideas, they too will endorseyour event. It’s social media etiquette to repay the favor.

 

Short and Sweet. Don’t overwhelm your followers with long-winded posts. Keep your posts to a minimum number that includes your hashtags or hyperlinks. Even though you have 150 characters on Twitter, you don’t have to use them all to gain the attention of your followers. Be catchy and fun to get information across effectively.

 

By following these 5 social media techniques, your events and campaigns will better engage attendees and followers and gain new fans. Need help developing your event’s social media campaign? Give us a call! Also check out our latest info graph for a step-by-step social media guide!

 

 

 

#IceBucketChallenge

Like everyone else, EOE’s timelines and newsfeeds have been filled with numerous #IceBucketChallenge videos. This simple concept of taking a bucket of ice water, dumping it over your head while on video and posting it to social media channels has grown into an infectious way to raise awareness and money for Lou Gehrig’s disease. Here’s 3 things we love about this social media phenomenon.

harryice

Call to action. By having each person nominate more friends, it sustains the trend. This social media storm can only continue to grow through the nominations of others; it’s a call to action! Either donate or dump ice water on yourself.  With no call to action the #IceBucketChallenge would have never continued on social media. All social media campaigns for a cause need to have a call to action in order to stay relevant and trending.

Visual. By having nominees film themselves taking the #IceBucketChallenge it adds a visual element. If it were just pictures, friends would never know if it was truly cold water used, it gives the challenge credibility. Also it gives nominees a chance to have fun with the challenge by using a GoPro camera or adding your dog to the #IceBucketChallenge.

Celebrities.  Even famous athletes, singers and actors are drenching themselves with ice water. This shows celebrities not only will donate to the cause but will partake in a social media revolution. Lance Bass, Martha Stewart, Sidney Crosby, Aaron Rogers and many more have taken the challenge.

These three advantages of the social media world wind of the #IceBucketChallenge have dramatically increased the amount of donations to ALS Association. Donations have gone from $14,480 to $160,000 within a 10-day period with more contributions daily.

The #IceBucketChallenge has created great visibility for the ALS foundation. To see more #IceBucketChallenges visit our Cause Marketing in Action Board.

4 Reasons for Sponsored Snapchats

Like everyone else, EOE enjoyed Rio Live 2014 on Snapchat! This new and bold collaboration of snaps from average people was a great way to increase awareness of the final game. EOE believes a sponsored Snapchat story can be a great way to market any major event for 4 major reasons.

Captive Audience: Everyday marketers struggle with ways to bring their message to the masses with all the distractions of everyday life.  Snapchat by nature is a one and done type of program.  Once you start watching the story you know you won’t be able to get it back.  This factor created a captive audience from the moment the users touched the colored snap box for Rio Live 2014.Screenshot_2014-07-14-11-07-59

 Adds Meaning. The makers of Snapchat picked the photos for Rio Live 2014 from people close to the action. By using actual fans celebrating the World Cup, it added value to the storyboard. Just showing photos of the event wouldn’t have been an effective tactic because major sports channels were already broadcasting them. Showing photos of people experiencing the event gives the snap story meaning.

Geo-Fencing. A geo-fence is a virtual perimeter for a real-world geographical area. By filtering photos before streaming them, Snapchat was able to add interesting and exclusive photos, instead of irrelevant content. It allowed for Rio Live 2014 to reach a large audience in a much more appealing way by showing the excitement in Brazil. Major events can use geo-fencing as a way to narrow whose photos are chosen for their snap story.

Sponsored Story. Everyone wouldn’t have seen these photos if Snapchat hadn’t pushed the snap story. By driving the Rio Live 2014 onto people Snapchat feeds it was easier than having people search and add the account in order to view photos. It also made it harder for Snapchat users to ignore. Major events can pay Snapchat to add their event to accounts, similar to paying Facebook to boost a post. Doing this gives the event worldwide visibility.

Snapchat is a great social media tool for future events. Sponsoring a Snapchat story can build publicity in a new and interesting way for users. Which was your favorite snap from Rio Live 2014? Also, check our latest info graph of 4 Reason your event can benefit from a sponsored Snapchat!

Using Hashtags for Events

Hashtags have grown in popularity with the evolution of Twitter. By using these tagging methods, people are able to easily search for past tags and create trends. Using hashtags for events are crucial to media campaigns and major brands have recognized that. Here are some of our favorite campaigns from BizBash that took Hashtags to a new level.

Screen Shot 2014-06-04 at 9.38.07 AM

The Colgate’s Optic White partnered with the beauty station used for the Golden Globes this year. By placing decals on mirrors, with the hashtag #brilliantsmile , celebrities took photos of themselves and promoted Optic White with the hashtag.

Screen Shot 2014-06-04 at 9.37.30 AM

Backdrops call attention at large events! The producers of USA Network’s fashion presentation used a 60-foot-long video wall to promote the television show, Suits, new season with #suitstyle. Not only did this promote the show but it also created media conversations about men’s fashion.

 

Tide was one of the largest sponsors of the Coachella Music Festival this year. Tide decorated mirrors with flower decals, their logo and the hashtag #tideplus , encouraging guests to take a “selfie”. By combining the two latest trends, hashtags and selfies, Tide created a widespread social media campaign.

Just having a hashtag isn’t the most important thing it’s placement! Key locations at events will make the hashtag, as well as the brand or company, a top of mind propriety for guests.  Some of the best places to draw attention to an official hashtag according to BizBash are:

1. The Wall- by placing a hashtag on the way, it’s a call to action. It’s a simple and noticeable!

Screen Shot 2014-06-04 at 9.38.17 AM2. Video Screens- like #suitstyle , video screens can display the posts where the hashtags are used. This is becoming a common tendency at events.

3. Make the Staff Wear It- adding the hashtag to shirts that workers wear, guests will be sure to see and use the hashtag themselves.

4. Mark It on Tickets- Handing out colorful wristbands or pamphlets encourage guests to upload photos with the hashtag.

Making a hashtag is the easy part, but in order to make it a trending tag, placement matters! It should be anywhere and everywhere to promote your event, brand or company. Hashtags can translate into measurable exposure, helping adjust into larger long-term strategies. Using hashtags for events are key to a successful media campaign! For more of our favorite hashtagged events and placement, visit our Pinterest board.

 

 

EOE’s Favorite Marketing Activations at Coachella

https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10152315549651648&set=a.10152315549471648.1073741859.20281766647&type=3&theater

One of the most popular music festivals of the year started this past week in the deserts of California. We’re talking about Coachella, where thousands of young people come together for 2 weeks to celebrate music, show off their boho-style fashion, and have an overall great time. It’s no surprise that since there are thousands of people at this event festival that there are hundreds of Corporations right there with them setting up their own tents to market their brand. Inside these tents are activities and free products for the Coachella attendees. For brands that have a target demographic fitting the profile for the young people who go to Coachella, marketing at this event is absolutely genius. Here are EOE’s favorite marketing activations at Coachella.

Instagram Madness: Don’t worry about your target market that didn’t attend the festival – chances are, your logo will appear somewhere in the background of their friend’s Instagram picture. Currently under the hashtag #coachella, there are 865,000 images and counting. H&M has the right idea by incorporating a photo booth in their Coachella tent. Though they won’t directly upload to the photo app, who doesn’t love Instagraming their photo booth strips?

Events at an Event: That’s right, brands are hosting their own events at Coachella. Lacoste hosted a live pool party at a private estate near the festival, and yes, it included blow up alligators in the pool. To incorporate more branding, the event included a pop-up shopping area of Lacoste products with proceeds going to the Voice Project. An event, their product, and marketing of their cause marketing efforts? Well done, Lacoste. With Kendall Jenner in attendance sipping on her Lacoste branded coconut drink seen on her Instagram (also seen by millions of her followers), we’d say this was a huge success.

Haircuts and Alcohol: New Amsterdam took a completely out of the box approach when setting up their marketing station by incorporating an old-school style barber shop around their products. Guests could have their haircut or a shave for free. We’re not really following the connection to the brand but we appreciate its uniqueness and the fact that people are going to look and admire it. Some guys that have been camping out for a few days may definitely need a shave, let’s just hope the stylists haven’t had to many samples of New Amsterdam’s product before they get behind a razor!

We absolutely love seeing creative branding at events and believe it’s one of the best ways to get the most positive exposure for a brand. Coachella is more than a music concert, it’s a complete experience and these Corporations delivered on contributing to that for the attendees. To see more branding at Coachella see our Pinterest board here.

4 Key Take Aways from the 2014 Oscars

http://s1.ibtimes.com/sites/www.ibtimes.com/files/styles/v2_article_large/public/2014/01/16/oscars-2014-nominees.jpg

In case you missed the 86th Annual Oscar Awards that took place this past Sunday, there is a list of the winners online. However more importantly for event planners, we’ve recapped the top 4 take aways for you to use in your own events.

1.   Find an amazing host – The Oscars is known for being an overly formal event, so by finding the always entertaining Ellen DeGeneres to host, the award show became much more relatable for the thousands of viewers at home. We also noticed how often Ellen interacted with the audience for some hilarious candid moments to break up the show. If your event has a host that can keep guests involved and lively, you are sure to have a successful event.

2.  Support local vendors/businesses – Lately there has been a push for everyone to support small businesses for products and services, and vendors for your event should be no different. One of the most memorable moments during this year’s Oscar’s was when Ellen ordered a few pizzas for the hungry guests in the crowd (see #1). Though national pizza chains such as Pizza Hut or Papa Ginos could have paid tens of thousands to make that delivery to receive huge marketing benefits, Ellen chose Big Mama’s & Papa’s Pizzeria, a Los Angeles-based franchise instead. Props for supporting local business!

3.  Incorporate Social Media – The Oscar’s made social media history Sunday as it took the most famous “selfie” of all time. Shortly after Ellen tweeted the star-studded photo, to say it went viral is an understatement. Twitter was momentarily shut down by the amount of activity as tweeters rushed to see the picture on Ellen’s page. It quickly became the most retweeted tweet of all time and currently has 3.2 million retweets. By incorporating social media at your event, buzz will be created by guests. Encourage hashtags, retweeting, tagging handles of important people relevant to your event will open the lines of communication between the guests at your event and the ones that are only connected by their cell phone.

4.  Brand Identity – For the past 86 years, The Oscars have always been known as one of the most formal events in the entertainment industry. A lot in our society has changed in the last 86 years, yet year after year the Oscars continues to stay true to their traditional theme while allowing certain aspects of the ceremony to be relevant.  In 2014, serving pizza to women in fancy gowns, Jennifer Lawrence being applauded for her fall, and encouragement of being distracted by social media on your cell phone is acceptable. Simple features like this create a fresh event every year without the awards losing their predominantly formal brand identity. Balancing tradition with relevancy is key in planning events for corporations that have carried traditions for decades; however as an event planner it is just as important to plan an event that belongs in this decade.

Do want your next event to run as successfully and smoothly as the 2014 Oscars? Contact us today and let’s get planning

Case Study: The Adrenaline Rush Project

In our research of new and upcoming non-profits, we found an organization created in 2012 founded by only nine college students in California. The Adrenaline Rush Project helps the physically disabled participate in extreme activities to give them a rush of being completely alive and invincible.

A great cause marketing partnership for this non-profit would be Red Bull.  They are so much more than the sales of an energy drink. Over the years they have branded themselves as a company who is involved with extreme sports, extreme athletes, and all things giving you an adrenaline rush. Their slogan “Red Bull gives you wings” could even tie directly into the campaign, and be symbolic of mental and emotional aids for the participants, showing them that just because their physical limitations may alter their daily lives. Red Bull even hosts a TV series that is displayed on their website featuring sponsored athletes, their stories, and achievements that revolve around their experience with how adrenaline rush’s affect their outlook on what is possible.

WHY IT WORKS: With all of this gathered information, what we see is a great marketing opportunity for both Red Bull and the Adrenaline Project. Recent gathered statistics about philanthropic efforts show that Red Bull would benefit from a business perspective from this proposed partnership.

According to the 2012 Edelman Good Purpose Study: “47% of global consumers buy brands that support a good cause at least monthly, a 47% increase from 2010.” Consumers are consistently becoming more attracted to companies that participate in philanthropic efforts. Whether companies are partnering with non-profits or coming up with a project themselves, statistics show that these companies will have increased sales compared to ones who don’t.

THE EVENT: Red Bull will need to create awareness in order to reap the business rewards. The best way to launch such an amazing marketing campaign is to have an event that creates awareness for this new partnership and is prolonged by social media involvement following the event launch.

A great event opportunity for this campaign would involve Red Bull’s sponsored athletes meeting the physically disabled participants, talking about experiences, and sharing stories. The Red Bull athletes would then help out and engage in activities designed for the participants, making them feel alive and able to achieve happiness through an adrenaline rush. This serves as a whole new level as inspiration to The Adrenaline Project’s participants.

These athletes could have a tremendous impact on the perception that physically disabled people have about what’s possible when it comes to living life to the fullest. Though physical boundaries may be more limited for some, both participants and athletes at the event could share stories about the mental boundaries they have overcome for their love of an adrenaline rush.

SOCIAL MEDIA: The best way to gain social media attention is to include The Adrenaline Rush Project and Red Bull together on each posting. That way,The Adrenaline Rush Project will get so much more attention from Red Bull’s consumers and Red Bull’s consumers will see the company getting involved in a good cause. Pictures could be shared via Instagram at the launch event of the Red Bull athletes talking and mentoring the participants. In the caption space; a link could be provided to a video on YouTube with the hyperlink saying “Check out how Red Bull athletes help with The Adrenaline Rush Project.” Then the hyperlink will lead you to a Youtube video covering the event, interviewing participants and Red Bull athletes, and explaining how The Adrenaline Rush Project makes a big difference in the lives of the physically disabled. To check out our infographic on how to use social media in events click here.

Events aren’t just a PR service for increased sales and to threaten competitors; they start conversations and build relationships. In this case, creating relationships between the corporation and non-profit can make differences in lives and help both groups in exposure.  To learn more about how events can enhance any cause marketing campaign please contact us.

How to Market your Cause Marketing Campaign in Social Media

It’s always inspiring when influential companies partner up with non-profits to help out disadvantaged groups. While chatting in the office one day, a great idea jumped into our heads about a perfect potential partnership.  We thought that partnering Ann Taylor Loft with Dress for Success would really benefit young women in the workplace.

Ann Taylor Loft is all about “inspiring and connecting with women to put their best selves forward everyday”, something that Dress for Success does by providing women with outfits for interviews and jobs! Ann Taylor Loft would also be targeting a previously untapped consumer base by working with women who need help getting back on their career feet, and purchasing office- style clothes would be a great way to connect with them.  By partnering up together, both Ann Taylor Loft and Dress for Success can shine light on the importance of empowering women, and giving them the confidence to step into a boardroom with pride.

There are so many ways to incorporate social media into this event, from both execution and marketing angles. A great medium to use when marketing this event would be Instagram. Women of all ages are obsessed with Instagram, its such a visual app and its easily accessible for everyone, not to mention very fun to play around with! Here is what we envisioned when marketing this potential partnership…

  • Have women upload pictures of themselves in a workplace outfit that boosts their confidence with the hashtag #myDFSpowersuit to Instagram
    • These pictures could also be uploaded to Facebook and Twitter on a page created specifically for the ATL and DFS partnership
    • There would be a Facebook liking contest to attend a speech sponsored by the partnership
  • A forum would be created on LinkedIN ran through the “Professional Women’s Group Program” organized by Dress for Success, a program that supports women making the transition into the workplace
    • The forum would be available to the public and feature topics such as financial planning, stress management, and the “unwritten rules” of the workplace
  • The LinkedIN forum would lead up to a speech given by an influential business woman that would be attended by the PWG participants and the winner’s of the Facebook liking content
  • A Youtube page would be made specifically for the partnership that featured videos of lectures, helpful tips, Q&A sessions given by influential women in business
    • This page would be accessible to everyone, and allow us to reach women who didn’t win the Facebook liking contest or weren’t part of the PWG program
    • There would also be “behind the scenes” videos of the speech previously given
  • A blog post could be written that revolve around the ATL and DFS sponsored speech that featured “behind the scenes” information about the event and pictures from the event

How to Market a Cause Marketing Campaign Using Social Media

This partnership is only one example of the many great potential partnerships that could be created and effectively marketed. Utilizing social media mediums is a fast and inexpensive way to promote any partnership. If you liked this post, or have any great ideas of cause marketing partnerships and ways to execute and market them through social media, please don’t hesitate to contact us at socialmedia@eastofellie.com.

To learn more about Ann Taylor Loft’s mission to inspire women, click here.

To Pin our Inforgraphic, please click the image!

Drop us a line!

We want to hear from you!