Is it possible to have a successful event without a social media presence?

Building a social media presence for your event and growing a really engaged audience is such a time consuming process. But is it absolutely necessary? do you HAVE to do social media for you event? Are there any events doing it the old fashioned way and still thriving?

I’d be interested to know how important social media is to your event and how much time you put into it.

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If social media didn’t exist then I would push our website forum more. We have that as a back up place to chat but my event runs mainly through Facebook page and group, Twitter, Instagram, our app, our website, flyers, email newsletters and the 30+ festivals and gigs I go to each year chatting to our potential ticket purchasers! Social media does fall under the category of MOST of our ticket sales only because we push our news through that way. 25% of our event sells at the event the year before, then the rest is pushed online. 2018 is the first year we have gone fully e-ticket though putting faith in Eventbrite as normally at the festivals I go to I would take a book of tickets and sell them to people at other festivals!

I think the one big benefit you have is that your attendees are truly passionate about the subject matter and it lends itself well to social media chat. The challenge is for non-consumer events, say a telecoms conference or something like that. My question is, are Twitter and Facebook really the place for this sort of event and are the organisers wasting their time trying to build audiences here?

Ah that’s fair enough! I don’t know much about events outside of music festivals! My experience and expertise starts and ends there!

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Good question! I think if the target audience is old school then resources might better be invested in other channels. Also an event organiser might take the view that similar organisations/competitors aren’t utilising a particular channel so they don’t need to either. Some social media has worked better for me on certain events than others. I’ve still not seen Twitter ads work well in driving attendance and had heard mixed reports on LinkedIn but have since seen it work albeit at a higher cost compared to other activity I’ve run alongside it. Of the projects I’ve worked on I can’t conceive any of them not having at least some social media presence.

I see a lot of brands doing social media and not getting interaction i.e. posts going without likes or comments. I just wonder if this looks worse than not doing it at all?

I’d be inclined to agree with you. I think there’s a general pressure to have a string of social media accounts for your event but sometimes people don’t commit appropriate resource and believe it’s just a question of knocking out a few tweets rather than an ongoing dialogue. If you want it to work well for your event you’ve got to know it’s appropriate for your audience and push out quality content regularly. I always ask myself “will anyone care about this” and if it’s not a strong yes then I have to revisit the content.

Yep, the “will anyone care” test is a good one!

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