Twitter for Events 101

If you keep up with the Eventbrite blog, you know that in general, the three most popular social media channels to share your event are Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. You also might remember from last year’s Global Social Commerce report that Twitter drives the most visits to your event page per share (see below). But with over 645 MILLION registered Twitter accounts (!!!), you might wonder how on earth you’ll ever be able to stand out among the noise. Lucky for you, we’ve put together the basics to keep in mind as you get started using this powerful tool to drive traffic and sales to your event!

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First things first.

You’re gonna need an account. Creating a Twitter account is relatively painless, and bonus? It’s free. Visit Twitter.com to get this Twitter party started. You’ll need to pick out a user name, or a handle. Your handle can be whatever you’d like (as long as it’s available), but keep in mind that people might be searching Twitter for you, your company, or your event, so make things easy for your adoring future fans. In other words, if your organization is called Allison’s Angels, it would be really confusing if your twitter handle was @RiDeOrDiE77. After you’ve picked your handle, upload a photo or logo for your avatar (nobody likes to tweet with the Egg avatar) you have 160 characters to write your bio. Don’t know where to start? This article is a great jumping off point.

Next: Learn the Lingo.

You’ve probably noticed some weird lingo when you’ve looked at tweets. RT. MT. H/T. DM. That ‘at’ sign. That ‘#’ sign. The list goes on and on. I started to write out a little cheat sheet of Twitter basics for you, but then I remembered that one of my favorite artists, Jessica Hische, created this awesome site called “Mom This is How Twitter Works.” It’s ok if you’re not a mom, it’s a quick read and really informative. Learn who can see what, how to send someone a ‘direct message’, how to retweet someone, etc. Once you’ve got that sorted out, you’re ready to begin!

Who.

If you’re new to Twitter, take a few minutes to think about who you are, and what you’re adding to the conversation. For example, many moons ago, I used to run the Twitter account for a famous piano bar in Chicago. It would be a total snore for anyone following the account if I had just tweeted who was playing each night or drink specials, so I decided that in addition to the bar news, we would tweet about music, booze, and Chicago. Building an online persona that discussed more than just ‘the bar’ helped us reach a far bigger audience, grow our followers faster, and gave us far more content to work with!

What.

Before you even hit ‘send’ on your first tweet, take a moment to think about the people you like to interact with, both online and offline. Do you enjoy spending time with people who only talk about themselves? Probably not, right? Zzzzzzzzz. Keep this in mind as you navigate the ol’ Twitter-mobile. Personally, I like to use the 70-30 rule: no more than 30% of your tweets can be self promotional. Use your ‘who’ from the section above to guide you next. For example, if you are promoting your upcoming 5k, you might want to tweet about healthy things to eat while training, or playlists of songs that are fun to run to in addition to sharing information about the race with the registration link here and there.

Additionally, it could be fun to collect Twitter handles during registration using Eventbrite’s custom questions, so you can ask individuals how their training is going! The sky is the limit here, folks. Just remember: don’t be annoying and talk about yourself all the time.

Why.

Unless you skipped the beginning of this article, you already know that of Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, Twitter drives the most traffic to your event page. So aside from the obvious, Twitter is an incredibly easy and effective way to build a community around your organization or event. Communities are a great way to crowdsource (‘Who should we have as the keynote at our next meeting?’), seek feedback (‘Whatd’ya  think of the roast beef sandwiches we served last week?’), and make your audience feel welcome and important (‘Hey Twitter followers, you get a special discount! Thanks for being you!’). The ROI of being active on Twitter is always positive.

When.

Twitter, unlike Facebook, is a fast paced conversation. If you post something on Facebook at 8am, if a lot of people are engaging with it, it might show up at the top of your feed much later in the afternoon. If you post all-day-erry-day on Facebook, you could come off as a little over the top. It’s much different on Twitter. If you tweet something at 8am it could be buried in a matter of minutes, which means it is ok to tweet multiple times a day. Heck, if you’re tweeting a lot, you could even tweet the same message a few times a day and I doubt anyone would notice. There’s no right or wrong number of tweets you should send per day (do keep in mind the 70-30 rule) as your followers probably all consume tweets differently.

What is important to keep in mind; however, is when your community is active on Twitter. Are you organizing networking events or hospitality professionals? They might work late and sleep in, so sending tweets at 7am would likely fall on deaf ears.  If you are organizing an endurance event, 7am might be a great time to tweet, when your community might be coming home from their morning run and checking Twitter before they get ready for work. Take some time to figure out the best time(s) of the day to tweet, and go from there. Pro tip: take a look at when your competitors are tweeting….they could be onto something!

Alright!  Now that we’ve covered the very basics, and the Who, the What, the Why, and the When of Tweeting about your event — you’re ready to get started! Got any tips you’d like to add? Tell us in the comments below, and let us know how these tips work out for you!