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Discover The Power of Event App Plug-Ins

Sometimes your event calls for a little ‘extra’.

It’s why we’ve developed a series of event app plug-ins to give your app that custom feel…without the custom price tag.

Ready-to-go whenever you need them, CrowdComms plug-ins are the easy way to give your attendees the features they need for a compelling event experience.

1. Coffee

Want to give your attendees great hassle free coffee? Try our new coffee ordering plug-in.  Attendees can request coffee straight from their mobile device.

Whether they want a skimmed flat white, long black or soy latte, our clever little widget will deliver requests direct to the event’s on-site barista (who manages orders from his or her device).

Great coffee, ready in an instant, means attendees avoid the hassle of long lines and make a quick return to the event action.

2. Exhibitor Meetings

  

Need a comprehensive appointment feature? We’ve got what you need for accurate scheduling that streamlines exhibitor-to-attendee meetings.

A dedicated portal allows attendees to book appointments direct from their mobile device.  A daily appointments screen shows which exhibitor is available and when.  Attendees simply choose their time and book.

Exhibitors also get direct access to their appointment schedule that updates in real-time as attendees make their booking.

3. Digital Passport

Remember the days when attendees carried around sorry looking bits of cardboard to get visitor stamps from exhibitor stands?

We’ve made the card and stamp redundant and replaced them with smart QR codes and meaningful data.   Our passport plug-in makes participating in exhibitor incentives a breeze.

At exhibitor stands attendees tap the event app icon and scan the QR code for an instant stand ‘check-in’.  With their details registered, attendees are immediately in-play for whatever incentives, games or challenges the exhibitor and/or the event is running.

Attendees can chart their visits via a handy progress bar at the top of the screen.

Takeaway:  event app plug-ins are the easy way to custom fit your event app so it gives attendees, exhibitors and sponsors an experience they’ll remember.

How You Can Plan Sustainable Events

We think the key to a successful event is putting people first – and that means taking the environmental impact of your event into account while planning. We’ve brought together our top tips for making your next event a sustainable sensation.

Go paperless!

Even the best-looking leaflets, programmes, brochures and business cards end up in the bin eventually. Use technology to your advantage and aim to rid yourself of printed collateral for good. Whether you start emailing receipts, have online tickets or use smart codes to share information, make your event a litter-free zone.

Drink smart!

Your attendees will appreciate being fed and watered, but that doesn’t mean you have to hand out hundreds of plastic bottles. Why not encourage people to bring their own and provide jugs or refilling stations? If you have wriggle room in the budget you could even provide a limited number of branded reusable bottles – get creative!

Shop local!

If you need caterers or any other service providers, try and reduce your carbon footprint by supporting local businesses. Supporting local ecology and economy? Double win!

Commit to your vision!

Taking care of the planet isn’t just trendy, it’s important, so why not put it at the forefront of your thinking? From marketing materials to choosing service providers, set the bar high for ecological-friendliness. Look out for companies with environmental mission statements.

Consider scale carefully!

Remember Goldilocks: you don’t want too much or too little. This principle can be applied widely when planning an event to avoid waste while still accommodating your guests. Keep things simple and don’t leave yourself out of pocket and overburdened. Minimalism is chic, and better for the planet.

3 Unexpected Event Security Tips

Whether we’re talking cryptocurrency or bag searches, “security” has become something of a buzzword over the last few years. Regardless of your event’s type or size, you want to know that your attendees are safe, and they need that reassurance too. It’s tricky to strike the balance as either under or overegging your security measures can lead to an awkward or even uncomfortable experience for your guests, at best, or leave your event vulnerable to legitimate threats at worst. So how do we hit that security sweet spot?

Sometimes it’s unexpected touches that really make the difference. Here are some tips you might not have thought of – and some unexpected effects they could have on your ticketholders!

  1. Provide emergency response guides.

Think back to the last time you used air travel. Did you look at the air safety chart provided? Probably not. Did you listen to the stewards as they ran through the safety briefing? Maybe, but more likely you were thinking about your in-flight meal. But if you cast your mind back to your first ever flight, you probably paid a bit more attention!

In planning your event you should have created security plans and your staff should be well aware of any procedures or measures you have in place in case of emergencies or accidents. By publishing an emergency response guide for your guests you’re not only providing key information, you’re proving to your guests that their safety is at the front of your mind. Will they read them? Maybe, maybe not. But they have them if they need them, and you’ve won major brownie points.

  1. Provide an open channel of communication for your vendors

If you’re expecting to host vendors or exhibitors, you need to make sure you’re able to converse openly and honestly with them. This includes transparency with matters of security, and it should work both ways. By giving them an opportunity to raise queries and concerns, you allow them to alert you to potential issues.

These could vary massively from disgruntled former employees potentially causing a scene to the threat of organised protests from Facebook hate groups (both real examples!) Don’t underestimate the power of a well-placed question between your account manager and your clients. In this case, a simple “Do you have any security concerns we could keep in mind for you?” could avoid a huge amount of disruption, and it all starts with that key relationship.

  1. Use technology to your advantage

You know your event better than anyone, which should give you a decent insight to how your attendees and clients will behave too. However, nothing supports an educated guess better than cold, hard data.

Pre-registration will help you gauge numbers, which will help you anticipate how to best manage security. Making sure you know who’s at your event at any given time is key when it comes to evacuation plans, risk management and more, so why not consider self-service kiosks and lead generation apps, which will help you find out who’s checked in, where they’ve been and who they’ve spoken to, as well as allowing you to contact them directly via the app. Document management allows you to upload your security guides to the app, so your guests can have ready access to it at all times. You could even use you event apps to publish alerts, updates and advice. There are tons of ways you could use your event app to help keep your event safe and secure, so why not make the most of it?

Security is enormously important, and evolving threats mean we need to be creative with our solutions. To stay safe, we have to get smart.

Six Steps To Easy In-App Event Coffee

Need to deliver great coffee to your event attendees?

Want to avoid a coffee crush at morning, lunch or afternoon breaks?

Love a slick system that allows attendees to order their event coffee straight from their mobile device?

CrowdComms new in-app coffee ordering feature means event attendees can order their caffeine fix in moments and collect in seconds.

What you’ll need:

1 x CrowdComms event app

1 x Coffee Cart

1 x Brilliant Barista

How It Works:

1.CrowdComms add a nifty coffee order button to your branded event app

2. Attendees click on the coffee cup icon

3. Select their coffee type, milk and sugar (there’s a handy ‘notes’ box for additional requests)

4. Submit their coffee order

5. App confirms coffee is ‘in progress’

6. Attendees make their way to the coffee cart where your brilliant barista has their order ready for collection

Easy!

Read how our in-app coffee ordering feature made a difference at a recent event.

Want to know how you can make coffee ordering easy at your next event? Get in touch!

Case Study: Event Engagement With Added Caffeine

 

Have you had your coffee fix today?

The 60% of Australians aged between 30 and 70 who drink coffee every day probably have!

Given coffee’s popularity, it’s no surprise it’s a non-negotiable feature at most events.  While catering to the caffeine demands of a small internal meeting is easy, things can get tricky for large events hosting hundreds or thousands of attendees.

Do you serve filter or barista brewed? How do you avoid long lines and over stretched service?  What happens to a large crowd when they’re deprived of caffeine?!

The coffee conundrum made us dig deeper to find out more about the Customer Engagement and Loyalty Conference that took place in Australia’s coffee capital, Melbourne.

We chatted to event organiser, Elizabeth Hanlon from Global Loyalty, about how they pulled off a caffeine masterstroke to boost event engagement!

 

CC: Hi Elizabeth, can you tell us a little more about your event?

Elizabeth: It’s the Customer Engagement and Loyalty Conference.  The event has been running for six years and provides information, discussion and networking opportunities.

Attendees tend to be people in senior, decision-making roles in marketing managers, loyalty and data analytics.

CC:  So, people who are very likely to expect, or rather need, coffee at an event?

Elizabeth: Absolutely! In the past we’d serve filter coffee, but we’d find that people were nipping out to get a ‘proper’ coffee.

Given the 2018 event was being held near Melbourne where there is a strong expectation for great coffee we felt filter wouldn’t fly with our attendees.

CC: Did you bring in a barista?

Elizabeth: We certainly did. We hired two coffee carts to cater the event. One would provide a walk-up service like a normal café. The other would deliver coffee orders made via our event app.

CC: Wow! A clever idea.

Elizabeth: I thought incorporating a coffee ordering element into the event app would not only make getting hold of a coffee a lot easier but it would also encourage downloads of the event app itself.

CrowdComms came up with a clean and simple ordering feature for the event app that was exactly what we were looking for.

CC: Did it work?

Elizabeth: It did, almost everyone downloaded the app! We also made coffee ordering part of our gamification strategy.

For every coffee attendees ordered they would receive 25pts and boost their place on the leaderboard. It definitely helped with event engagement.

CC: And how about the in-app ordering, was that a success?

Elizabeth: It went down so well. It was really easy to place an order. People could specify their coffee preference and milk type. The order went straight to the barista who worked from the list of incoming requests.

Attendees could order throughout the day so we had hardly any queuing.

CC: What was the attendee feedback like?

Elizabeth: They loved it! Attendees could order as many coffees as they liked.  I had plenty of people asking me “where can I pay for coffee?” They were delighted to find out it was free!

We planned on three coffees per person and came in just under that for the event.

CC: Did you get any sponsor feedback?

Elizabeth: Mastercard sponsored the coffee cart. While they didn’t give any specific feedback they had done this before so it obviously works for them.

CC: Finally, do you think the coffee ordering gave your event a strong point of difference?

Elizabeth: Definitely. Coffee is an instrumental part of many people’s day. Making sure attendees could get their daily cup easily (and for free!) helped create a lovely, positive vibe throughout the event.

Case-Study: How Interactive Mapping Makes Event Navigation Easy

The Event

Farm World 2018.  Attracting over 55,000 visitors and more than 800 exhibitors, this four day event is a must-attend for anyone interested in growing, raising and harvesting.

The event is renowned for its forward thinking focus. Attendees can see the latest in equipment and technology, learn about sustainable gardening and connect with experts.

Where In The World

Lardner Park, Victoria, Australia.

Hosting over 120 events per year, Lardner Park supports a diverse range of celebrations and conferences. Whether they are holding weddings or music festivals, business functions or exhibitions, Lardner Park has a commitment to making a positive ethical and environmental impact.

Event Challenges

Event organisers needed an event app that would help visitors navigate the large event site quickly and easily.  With a huge range of diverse attractions and information stands, visitors needed an information source that would be simple and clear to use.

Event Tech Solution

Our biggest challenge was working with the sizeable event details.  With so much information to include we had to make sure everything was easy to locate, both within the app and the event itself.

Searchable Format

Breaking the event down into distinct categories (e.g. equestrian expo and exhibitors) we then organised the relevant detail so it was clear and ‘searchable’.

Each exhibitor app entry included map location details, plus a handy bookmark feature that would allow attendees to flag which exhibitors they would like to visit during the event.

Interactive Mapping

The Farmworld app was one of the first to use our wayfinder interactive mapping. The extent of the site meant getting around could be a challenge.  To help visitors get from A-to-B, we built an interactive map that would show app users the route they needed to take.

Takeaways: 

1.For large and complex events, breaking event information down into definable categories makes a big difference to attendees’ event experience.  For example, if you have a car exhibition, showing detail by vehicle make and model will enable attendees to see exactly what they want.

2. Always plan your event app with the user experience in mind. What challenges does your event present to attendees (e.g. location size, agenda complexity)? How can your event app help manage those challenges? Interactive mapping, agendas and real-time updates are all features that can turn the complex into the straightforward.

3. Allow plenty of time to collate your data for the app. Large events in particular will need a reasonable lead time to get the information together so the app can be launched ahead of the event kick-off.

What They Said

“Very happy with CrowdComms service and support.”

Josh Last, Lardner Park

 

 

 

Your Best Event App Notification Strategy

When you need to give your attendees the most up-to-date information, event app notifications and alerts are the go-to communication tool.  Ready to read in real-time they let people know time sensitive detail, such as room changes, speaker swaps and entertainment alerts.

While notifications are a hard working event app feature, did you know you can squeeze even more goodness from these handy pop-ups?

Set and Schedule

Alerts are great for last minute updates, but you can also pre-schedule your notifications.  Think about how they can fit into your event communication strategy.  Do you want to remind guests about the registration process? Or is it important to prompt attendees to complete the post event survey?  Maybe a late afternoon promo of the evening’s entertainment will boost energy levels!

Setting scheduled alerts means you only have to focus on last minute changes that crop up during the event.

Sponsor Messages

Make sure sponsors can maximise engagement opportunities by offering them pre-scheduled event app alerts.  Scheduled messages can include incentives to visit their booth, website links or exclusive promotions.

Not only does messaging introduce added value for sponsors, it is a key feature that differentiates your sponsorship package levels.

Gamification

Keeping event games fueled and fired is another feature in your alert tool kit. Incorporate notifications into your gamification strategy means attendees will be hungry for new alerts!

Schedule notifications that provide passcodes or maybe send out clues as to passcodes can be found. You can also issue updates on how the leaderboard is looking to ramp up the competition.

Targeted Alerts

Are you running a dedicated reception for first-time guests? Do you want to communicate with event speakers? Targeted alerts communicate with specific groups or individuals

This means you can send information to help drive attendee behavior, provide group-specific information and keep your communication focused to bring more value to your attendees and event guests.

Creative Content

Don’t limit your alerts and notifications to just text.  Digital marketers will always include rich content (such as videos and images) in their communication strategy. This multi-layered approach means information is delivered in a variety of formats to grab attention and keep recipients engaged and interested.

Do likewise with your real-time pop-ups.  Whether its sponsor messages or event entertainment info, a mix of formats will focus attendees’ attention where it’s needed.

Think Strategically

Like any communication strategy, your approach to alerts and notifications should be focused, relevant and timely.

Too many notifications will quickly lose recipients’ attention.  Always think about the purpose of the alert. Ultimately each message should bring value and add to attendees’ event experience.

As a guide, one message every few hours is generally a good frequency but this may change depending on event activities and attendee engagement.

 

Does Your Event Have Big Screen Power?

Mobile screens are perfect for the hard working event app. However, while small screens are beautiful, big screens can give your event a powerful boost when it comes to attendee engagement and sponsorship revenue.

CrowdComms Live Display provides an exciting focal point that inform, entertain and unite audience members.

Big Screen Power: Increased Sponsorship Revenue

Live Display screens offer an immersive and attention grabbing opportunity for sponsors.

Provide great ROI for your sponsors by showcasing their brand on the Featured Partners screen. The ability to rotate through multiple images or logos means you can create an equal amount of promotional space for different sponsors.

Big Screen Power: Real-Time Information

While an event is in full swing, attendees’ mobile devices may be tucked away in pockets or bags. Keep people informed of important event changes by communicating via the big screen.

Real-time updates, alerts, notifications and information pushed to the Live Display mean attendees can stay in the loop at all times.

Pro-tip: use the Agenda screen to remind attendees what’s currently taking place and what’s happening next.

Big Screen Power: Amplified Engagement

 

It all happens on the big screen! From social media activity to gamification updates and leaderboards, eyes will be glued to the Live Display for eagerly anticipated updates.

Promote all the smart observations your attendees are making on social media by highlighting key posts and interesting insights.

The Leaderboard screen keeps your attendees engaged with your event games and fuels their (good-natured) competitive spirits!

Pro-tip: if your gaming strategy includes engagement with sponsor stands, don’t forget to include how Live Display will boost game engagement in your pitch to potential sponsors.

Big Screen Power: Smart Content

All this amazing activity has to cost extra time and effort, right? Wrong! Live Display will integrate with your existing event technology.

Live Display retrieves event data from the event app and organises it into sections (gamification, social media feeds etc.) without any manual intervention by the event organiser.

Beyond The Event: Getting The Most From Your Event App

We know how hard your event app works for your event. In the lead-up it’s helping you promote the event. During the event it gives your attendees a comprehensive and complete event experience. Immediately after the event it gathers data to tell you what worked and what didn’t.

….but what then?

There’s no need to mothball your event app until the next event, your app can keep on working for you right throughout the year.

Sharing Knowledge

You event app is probably abuzz with chat activity during your event. Direct messaging, forums, group discussion and activity feeds will all facilitate a vibrant exchange of ideas and connections around session topics and industry trends.

But there’s no reason conversations need to stop once the event doors close. Encouraging event app users to keep talking is a great way to prolong attendee engagement and build communities.

How to do this:

1.Introduce event related, but not necessarily event specific, topics that will inspire discussion for months to come.

2.Timely and discussion worthy industry development? Drop it into the chat platforms and use push notifications to alert participants to a new topic discussion.

3.Think of issues where an attendee would want to leverage their peer network for help or assistance

4.Set-up meeting hubs where mentor-to-mentee connections can flourish.

5.Monitor discussion so topic activity isn’t too busy or too slow. If a discussion thread has run its course think about posting a quick poll to gauge   concluding opinion then post results as an email update or SMS alert.

Building Connections

Networking at events is an art. Chatting with a potentially important contact over canapés is great – unless you miss the chance to exchange details and never see them again.

The event app makes connecting easy thanks to messaging platforms and in-app profiles. But what if you catch a name but miss the contact details? Or an opportunity arises post event and your attendee remembers a great person to connect with?

CrowdComms event app maintains chat threads after the event closes. This means attendees can hook back into key conversations to keep connections current.

Pro tip: Driving attendees back to the app to access contacts means they are likely to access additional app content, so make sure to keep your content up to date and engaging.

Multi-Event App

If you have a multi-event schedule it’s likely you’ll want your attendees to support your events throughout the year.

A multi-event app is the ideal way to communicate upcoming networking and knowledge sharing opportunities. Use an event calendar or individual apps within your multi-event app to make registration easy, see who else is attending and start engaging with fellow participants before the event even starts.

Using a multi-event app in your overall event strategy is a great way to let attendees know of other opportunities for them to meet their new network in person.

By leveraging an event calendar, or using individual apps for each event, within your multi-event app you can give attendees:

1.Easy access to register

2.A view of who else is attending

3.Participation opportunites

All before they walk in the door.

Pro-tip: Start the connection build from day 1!

Make sure your event community has all the tools it needs to build a great set of connections from the day you launch your event technology.

Have your group discussions ready to go, use alerts to send updates and have timely app content that will engage and enthrall your attendees.

Attendee engagement is critical. Show them that the app is an integral part of the pre-event and event experience  – plus the benefits it will bring to their on-going networking and knowledge sharing.

5 Tips To Get 100% Event App Download

It’s hard to imagine an event without an event app. They’re the smart, efficient and cost effective solution to information management and attendee engagement.

But just because event apps are a ubiquitous event feature doesn’t guarantee 100% event app download. Event organisers still need to utilise strategies to ensure attendees access and get the most from their event app.

We’re constantly analysing our high event app adoption events to identify the success elements. Here are some quick and easy tips for getting your attendees excited about your event app:

1.Registration PLUS Event App

The moment attendees register for your event is the perfect time to introduce your event app.

Congratulate your attendee on a successful registration. Tell them the next step is to download the event app. Position the app as a must-have feature using compelling (but short) copy.

Example: Download the XYZ event app NOW! Don’t miss out on important event information. Get all the detail you need delivered straight to your mobile device

Even if your event app content isn’t quite complete show the current viewable content and let them know that more information is on its way. You can alert them to new material via push-notifications, which is a great way to get them using the app.

2.Email Alert

Reach attendees via email to let them know they have a viewable profile in the event app. Who isn’t keen to make sure the very best version of themselves is out there for all to see?

Let attendees know they can access the app to edit their profile.

Promote the benefits of having a great in-app profile. Meaningful networking and enhanced personal brand are compelling reasons for attendees to get busy with the event app.

3.Make a Movie

Want to give your attendees a fast and effective introduction to the event app? Make a movie. Video is proven to boost email opening rates and improve target engagement.

Create a short 30-second video showcasing one or two marquee features of your app plus instructions on how they get the app on their device.

No need to show every single feature, attendees will discover these once they start using the app!

4.Utilise Registration/Check-In

Make event app download part of the registration and check-in process.

As people check-in, ask each attendee:

“Have you downloaded the mobile app?”

If they have, they are all set to go. If not, point to a simple instruction to do so e.g. printed on the back of their name badge or signage at the registration desk.

If attendees ask for specific help to download the app, an app help-desk next to the registration point is the perfect place to send them. Channeling attendees to an app help-desk avoids bottlenecks at the registration desk and ensures people get expert help when they need it.

5.Welcome Note

An opening or welcome session is the perfect opportunity to get those last remaining people to download the app before the event kicks off.

Ask your session speaker to mention the app and include a slide that details download instructions.
 You can take this a step further by asking the audience to put their hands up (or the lights on their phones) if they’ve already downloaded the app.

Then ask your speaker to say:

“Hold them there. If you haven’t downloaded the app yet, it is going to be an important part of the event. See all the people nearby you who can help show you how to get it! We’ll give you a minute.”



This is a great way to make sure that final segment of attendees to download the app. Keep it light-hearted and maybe ask for another show of hand or phones once the minute is up!

 

 

The Event App Features You Need Right Now!

Is your event app primed for a year of great events? Like any technology event apps are constantly evolving. What was innovative and forward thinking in 2015 may not be as fresh and effective in 2018.

While your tried and tested event app may do a perfectly adequate job, are you getting the ROI you deserve?

Here are the event app features you should expect right now:

Smart and Easy Experiential

Check out any of the 2018 event trend lists in circulation and experiential is up there as a major focus for event organisers. It may feel like a term that is hard to define, but in short it means creating a more immersive and exciting experience for event goers.

Yes, that can include the spectacular and jaw-dropping (which is often the focus of experiential marketing) but it can also extend to a simple exchange of ideas between speakers and attendees.

Forget static sessions where speakers deliver a didactic talk on a given topic to a passive audience. Think about turning audience members into participants.

Q&A sessions or polling via your event app gives attendees a voice. They enable a dynamic learning environment where attendees can actively shape session content and outcomes.

It may not make create a social media storm, but offering attendees the chance to actively engage with your event content delivers meaningful outcomes for event organisers, sponsors and attendees.

Gamification With Impact

Gamification has been around for a while now but it’s moved on from the novelty status it once had.

Gamification is now a hard-working stalwart feature of forward thinking events. In its infancy gamification was a neat way to inject a bit of fun into events via emerging technology. Now, it’s an important tool to deliver a whole range of event metrics including attendee engagement, sponsor ROI and networking.

While gamification is an event app must have, success depends on smart deployment. Linking activities to tangible outcomes, e.g. quality lead generation, will ensure efforts are targeted and measurable.

In addition to gaming specific features, utilise other event app capabilities (such as social media feeds) in your strategy. Photo or wordplay challenges can have a viral effect that delivers widespread results.

End-to-End Communication

How well does your event app communicate with the rest of your event tech? Event apps can now exist as part of a suite or family of services.

Where providers once focused on specific platforms, such as registration or event app or lead generation, it’s now possible to work with end-to-end solutions that can help manage your event from ticket sales and promotion right through to post event data analysis.

The benefits of an end-to-end solution include streamlined processes that minimises downloads and log-ins for attendees.   Data transfer between systems (e.g. registration to event app) also reduces data entry for organisers and ensures information passed through the event tech chain remains consistent.

Even if your event app doesn’t exist as part of an end-to-end solution, having the capability to communicate effectively and securely with the rest of your event tech is important so ask your provider about compatibility and reporting capabilities.

Next Gen Branding

Of course, a decent event app will offer a level of custom branding. Event apps at the cheaper end of the scale may offer custom options in combination with the provider’s own branding.

But for sophisticated and high profile events it’s reasonable to expect that the event app design will be highly flexible, beautiful and customised.

Forward thinking event apps offer organisers a range of creative options that allow the event and sponsor branding to shine. An organiser’s graphic design team should have the same flexibility as a web designer. From animated graphics to pop-up banners, a modern event app will deliver sophisticated branding options that meet aesthetic objectives and wow attendees.

How To Avoid Event Social Media Pitfalls

Whether you’re running a school fete or global conference, your event needs to have a social media profile.

Social media provides a forum for you to connect and share ideas and information with your attendees. It can generate buzz and enthusiasm for your event, boost ticket sales, create lasting positive impressions and inspire raging FOMO in those who missed out.

However, it can also go horribly wrong.

While the examples given the Inc.com post are extreme cases, it’s easy to trip up on social media. Here are some tips to avoid your hash-tag turning sour:

Have A Policy

While posting on social media can seem like freewheelin’ fun times, in reality it pays to have clear and widely understood policy that provides an engagement blueprint for you and your team.

You may have a social media/content manager who fully understands the event social media brief, including content language and tone, but what about team members who may post event related content across their personal channels?

Team cheerleading across social media can be important and influential, so help them understand them how to craft their event related posts. Issue guidelines around language, hot- button issues, personal opinion vs. company line and appropriate image use.

Pro tip: a useful analogy is to ask team members who want to post event related content to think about how they would act if they were at the event in person – and post accordingly.

Don’t Ignore Reputational Weaknesses

If you’re running a conference for an industry renowned for poor service or terrible time-keeping or low quality standards tread very carefully when attempting to spark conversation on social media.

The weaknesses may be a necessary by-product of low-cost, for example, but pretending they don’t exist or glossing over them with an inappropriately upbeat hash-tag could backfire. Understand how people engage with the event industry or brand you’re promoting and use this to craft your social media strategy and posts.

Keep Watch For Timely Issues

Your on point hash-tag might be the perfect reflection of your event, but don’t forget that every post will exist in the wider social media universe.

Whether it’s an emerging natural disaster, a political movement or troubled brand ambassador – a hash-tag that inadvertently connects to a divisive or important issue will appear clumsy at best and wilfully ignorant/malicious at worst.

Research your event social media themes and hash-tags in the hours leading up to posting. If a situation emerges during your campaign, don’t be afraid to change strategy. A few explanatory posts with the new hash-tag makes any negative associations easier to avoid.

Monitor and Respond

Keep an eye on your event mentions and respond to any potential difficulties quickly.   Include referral guidelines in your event social media policy. If team members encounter complaints, negative feedback or inflammatory event related content they are best referred to (and dealt with by) the appropriate marketing or customer relations expert straight away.

Fast and appropriate responses avoid public arguments that can quickly degenerate into a viral nightmare.

Pro tip: if your social media posts go awry, take responsibility and apologise where necessary – don’t ignore and hope it will go away.