April 22, 2013; Eventility

Many nonprofits depend on events and fundraisers to build support and revenue. The transformation of event planning in the last decade has shown how essential it is to create social buzz. Eventility has published an infographic displaying the ways your organization should incorporate social networking into four key stages of an event: at the time of organizing, during the promotional period, in synch with the event as it’s happening, and in the days afterward. The organization looked at data reports along with several high-profile events that utilize social media to increase hype, such as SXSW 2013, London Fashion Week, and Nationwide Children’s Hospital’s Columbus Marathon.

You can view the infographic here:


Some interesting data findings:

Social networking from start to finish: Make sure your organization includes a social media campaign from the early stages of planning, and not merely as an afterthought. A unique hashtag is a valuable tool to track any mention of your event. Eventility suggests, “By asking your audience to vote for their favorite talks, speakers, bands, or activities, you can build up an event program that you know people will enjoy.” Cultivating a relationship with a social-media-savvy audience can aid nonprofits in generating discourse on what topics and speakers to include, creating a fluid dialogue that persists throughout the event itself and through feedback afterwards, helping your organization evaluate what was effective and what will need improvement in following years. SXSW is a great example of how successful social media can be in generating buzz; the Austin festival received 4,000 speaker requests and 280,443 tweets discussing SXSW during the five days prior to its start.

Using visual guides: Organizations are seeing a lot of success through building audiences on YouTube and Pinterest, because social media users, as we all know, love to share pictures and videos. Live streaming is another way to encourage engagement through audiovisuals and can keep your social media audience engaged from miles and miles away. Sharing presentations, workshops, and speeches in the days or weeks preceding the event is also an effective way to get viewers excited for the year to come—just look at the many viral TED Talk videos that spawn following conferences.—Aine Creedon