In a recent move by the social tech giant, Instagram made an aggressive attack to soak up some of Snapchat’s loyal users. The Facebook-owned photo app released “Instagram Stories” a near replica of Snapchat’s story feature. With this new update, users are able to post short videos to their profile for all to see. In a familiar fashion, the videos then disappear in 24 hours.
So what does this ground-breaking change for Instagram mean for the event industry? For starters, event planners can now create a sense of urgency through the “fear of missing out” to reach their entire Instagram following. For so long organizations and events have struggled to convert users from their Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter into Snapchat ‘friends’. However now that Instagram is offering a similar set of features, planners are able to create this same exclusive, immediate, and captivating content on a more established user platform. Below we will explore 5 ways event professionals can use this new feature in order to make a more interactive and engaging experience for your event’s attendees.
1. Empower Your Speakers
Allow keynote speakers access to your Instagram account leading up to the event, so they can introduce themselves to the potential audience. This will also give attending audience insight/background information about the speaker, while generating buzz about the event and attracting more last second attendees. By providing a platform for the speaker to push some of their own content, you’ll also be able to leverage the speaker’s own audience and marketing power, to drive impressions for your event.
2. Create Guest Interaction
Create a contest between attendees, on who can publish the most inspiring or captivating Instagram story during the event. They will be entered into the contest if they post to their feeds and include the hashtag/handle of the event. This will garner interaction with the attendees but also be free advertising to everyone who follows them! The contest could be set up in the form of a scavenger hunt. Have guests move about the event and post stories of certain clues left behind. This offers an extremely interactive experience for guests while also publishing multiple aspects of your event.
3. Promote Exclusive Content
Release exclusive content through your Instagram story – you will draw people to you hashtag/handle and keep them interested in your visual content. A good piece of exclusive content would be offering registration coupons through your story. This will keep you users engaged in your content and give them a reason to keep up to date with stories you post down the road for other events. Using other social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter to let your audience know you’re releasing exclusive content to Instagram Stories, will help drive more followers to IG.
4. Promote Event Transparency
Backstage content is an incredible way to drive viewership and keep an audience interested. Filming the behind scenes of the event will give users a sense of involvement/understanding of how the event really works. Instagram stories are an awesome way to give attendees up to date updates of the going ons of the event both before and during.
5. Attract Guest Feedback
Another great way to have attendees get involved in an event in the months leading up is to post a promo story of the event. Request your followers to respond to the post with ideas for hashtags or catchphrases for the event. Use the clever and creative responses to name different sections at the event. A good and easy example is to create a story about the post-event happy hour, and allow followers a chance to post ideas for what the happy hour will be called! This idea will also work for post-event recap videos and guest feedback.
Use these tips to help you reach a broader base and make a more engaging experience for your attendees. Of course, customize these tips to make them the most practical and engaging for your specific event!
Be sure to leave a comment below on what worked for you, we would love to hear from you!
Planning the buffet, placing the mics, laying it all out — it’s not easy making the little details come to life. So in 2011, we set out to change the way events are designed by introducing better collaboration between planners and properties. Today, we’ve evolved that vision into an innovative platform offering the industry’s leading solutions for event sales, services, and group distribution. All to help the world create the best face-to-face events.