Social Media and Email Marketing Specialist
MIT Communication Production Services
12 March 2014
• Understand what to do before, during, and after an event
• Discover tools and approaches to support your efforts
Examples of events
• Multi-day conference
• Exhibit opening
• Career fair
• Panel of experts
• All-day festival
• Open house
• Holiday or anniversary
Some events are small, others
Some last an hour, others last
Some are outdoors, others
occur in a lecture hall.
Before your event
Do as much as possible in advance.
Plan. Schedule content. Obtain help.
Wake Forest University
included the event
hashtag on their
program (May 2013).
Schedule content that can be scheduled
• Morning-of tweet welcoming participants
• Photo or image of the program
• Facts about the program or speaker
To engage on social, many of your participants will need
good, strong WiFi.
You will have mobile users with data, but others may use
computers and tablets. Make sure people know the
username and password.
If you are live-posting for an event that you did not plan,
make sure you have access to WiFi or use a data plan with a
Figure out your camera-to-social situation
Will you take photos?
What camera or
will you use?
How will you get the
photos to social?
Prepare for battery issues
Using your smartphone’s camera
eats up a lot of battery. Start the
event with a full battery on your
laptop, phone, camera, tablet or
any other technology you might
use, and bring chargers.
Have links ready
Shorten and save all the links that you or someone else will
mention during the event.
One way to do this is to save them all in a bit.ly bundle, but
you can also shorten and save them in a text ﬁle or note you
can easily access and copy from.
Create Twitter lists so you don’t
have to hunt down handles:
• Speakers and panelists
• Organizations you know the
speakers will mention
• Inﬂuencers, press, etc.
In some cases, a recurring, large event that will be live-
tweeting actively can have its own account (e.g.,
In almost all cases, one-time events should not have their
own Twitter handle. Each year of a recurring event should not
have its own handle.
The month of your event is not the time to start a department
If you want to use Twitter for events, your department should
get on Twitter and use it actively and consistently for at least
LinkedIn, Google, or Facebook group
Create a group where conference participants can network
and discuss ideas relevant to the event.
Set up your HootSuite dashboard
Don’t try to ﬂip back and forth between your mentions, home
feed, hashtag search, Instagram posts, discussions, etc. Set
up your dashboard ahead of time.
If you can, get as much information as possible beforehand.
• Speech transcripts
• Program or agenda
Set a hashtag well before the event and include it in your
marketing materials, as well as in all the materials for the
• Start tracking it before you or anyone starts using it. Use
HootSuite archive, Hashtracking, or another service.
• Choose an easy-to-remember hashtag. Short. Memorable.
You may want to use the same hashtag for a recurring event
so people start to expect it (e.g., #MLtalks).
• Make sure no one else is using this hashtag!
Provide social maps
Use Pinterest to show conference participants visuals of
session locations, to provide a self-guided tour of campus, or
to share ideas on where to eat.
During the event
It’s not just about using social networks
(like Facebook or Twitter);
it’s about using social principles
and social technologies throughout the event.
Depending on the size of
the event and activity of
your Twitter following, you
may need to divide the
work between two people
or adjust your schedule to
give it your full attention.
Questions via Twitter
If you choose to take questions via Twitter, announce at the
beginning of the session that you will be doing this, not at the
beginning of Q&A part of your session. Remind participants of
Display the hashtag everywhere
• On each slide
• In the program
• On posters
• On screens
• On the wall
The announcer/moderator should mention it often.
Also, make sure the participants know your social accounts.
Events that take place on social media
It still takes planning
Sandy Pentland, Toshiba Professor of Media Arts and Sciences
Although Twitter chats
happen in the moment,
you will plan them ahead;
A Twitter chat can be the
event, or can precede or
follow an in-person or