We’ve all seen it before: someone plans a really great event — a birthday party, a night out with friends, a summer barbecue — and despite lots of hard work, attendance is lower than expected. Nobody wants that to happen, and you especially don’t want it to happen when the event is a fundraiser for your nonprofit organization. To avoid sparse attendance at any of your functions, here are four easy ways to raise event awareness using social media.
1. Tell Us About It
I know I’ve talked about it before, but telling your story is the most important way to get people to pay attention to your organization. It’s no different when you take it down to a smaller scale; building a narrative for your event is an easy way to garner support and attention and to attract registrants.
The elements you should include in your event story are virtually identical to the ones you include in your organization’s narrative. What are you doing? How are you doing it? What are you going to do with the proceeds? Your constituents are more likely to attend an event if they’re sure they know what to expect and what you’re going to do with their money.
2. Link to Your Event Page in Every Promotion
Whether you’re sending an e-mail blast promoting your church’s spaghetti dinner or plugging your huge walk-a-thon on Facebook, make sure you always link your promotion to the event registration page. Most users spend just under a minute on any given webpage – many visits last as little as 10-20 seconds. If someone visits your site and can’t quickly find your event page, they’ll lose interest. It should take 1-2 clicks for potential participants to navigate from your promotional material to the registration page.
3. Ask Your Strongest Supporters to Share Your Event
As of March 2013, Facebook has just over 1 billion monthly active users, and that’s just one social media outlet that people use on a regular basis. Ask your more web-savvy supporters to share your events on their social media pages to ensure that your event gets as much attention as possible.
4. Post Pictures and Videos to Keep People Excited
If the event you’re promoting is an annual occasion, try posting pictures or videos from previous years. You can also post promotional graphics or flyers, take photos of event setups or stockpiles of supplies – the possibilities really are endless. Occasional posts can keep your supporters’ attention, pique their interest, and build anticipation for your event. Be careful, though: posting too often is an easy way to annoy your constituents instead of engaging them.