If your organization is considering using a social media wall at its next meeting, consider the following opportunities, limitations and parting words of caution and encouragement:
- Feature event sponsors:
Sponsors are always looking for additional ROI. Feature and thank your event sponsors on your social media wall. Show organizers can display a photo montage of sponsor logos with their booth numbers to raise sponsor visibility.
- Build greater event enthusiasm:
Another tool in your social media wall toolbox is promotion: announce contest winners, post photos of attendees networking or attending sessions! Capture moments where they are learning and having fun during your event.
- Drive social conversation:
Every industry has a hot button or some trending topics that become the prevalent buzz during an event. Observe your attendees’ social conversations and engage them by asking questions and seeking feedback on their interests.
Risks and Limitations
- It’s a slow news day:
Social media traffic usually picks up exponentially during an event. If your attendees don’t actively Tweet or post, however, your social media wall will quickly become flat and boring. Arrive prepared with a list of event-related questions, updates and conversation starters to post to your feeds in case the online dialog begins to stall.
- Managing rogue posts:
Despite your best efforts, some posts about your event will be just plain negative. Your responsibility here is to address the complaint promptly, professionally and authentically. Profane, offensive and inappropriate posts should be removed immediately. A dedicated and attentive social media monitor must be prepared to respond to rogue posts within a few minutes if not instantaneously.
- Time is not always on your side:
No meeting planner whom I’ve met has the luxury of spare time to actively stay on top of event-related social media chatter during the event. In order to effectively manage social media conversations – particularly those that will take place in a public venue, online and on your on site wall – a dedicated social media monitor is a must.
Utilizing a social media wall at your next meeting may be a great way to build community, to foster networking, to encourage the exchange of ideas and to generate revenue. Social media walls can be particularly effective when your attendees embrace and actively consume social media. Consider how actively your attendees engage in social media, build your strategy and execute!