If you’re new to event planning and social media marketing, this is the article for you to read. We’ll break down some advanced social media tactics for event planners, even if you have no experience! The best part is, anyone with access to the internet can do this.
An Event Planner’s Advantage
Before we get started, you should know that event planners have an advantage with social media. The content that comes from events (pictures, video, memories, stories etc.) is usually fun and exciting, which allows you to easily create content and share your profession with the world. Ok let’s get into it!
Because most event planners work in a local market, there are really only four social media networks that will grow your business in 2019. These networks are Instagram, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter because they allow you to easily connect with local people!
So, here’s how you can use each of these platforms to market your business effectively.
Instagram Strategies For Event Planners
Instagram is a great way to show off your events by sharing pictures and videos but it’s also a great way to reach new clients.
Many people see Instagram as one-sided, meaning they only want to produce content and build a following. The real secret is to interact with other people’s content as well.
Here is a step by step outline to growing your event planning business using Instagram.
When you’re setting up your account there are a couple of things you can do to help you gain clients. Of course, you to have a good profile picture but you should also mention who you are, what you do, and how you can be contacted in your bio.
I would recommend not adding a website to your bio – I’d recommend adding in your bio, “message me for event planning” and here’s why.
If you have someone message you on Instagram you can help answer their questions which begins a dialog and helps you eventually convert them to a client much faster.
If you send them to a website with your contact form, you’ll most likely never actually get in touch with them. Most people don’t fill out forms and if they do, it will be hours or days before you reply to them or begin a conversation. There’s no reason to risk a missed connection when you can chat directly on Instagram.
Obviously, you must post pictures, videos, and Instagram stories at least once a day. But your content must have a purpose. In order to gain clients, you need to talk about what you do, in your content.
Posting a picture of a beautiful event venue is nice but posting a picture and telling a quick story in the caption about the event is 10x better.
Whenever you post pictures or videos to your feed, try to think of a quick story to tell people. Even better if your story includes details about your expertise in event planning.
When it comes to posting Instagram stories, you’ll want to take a documentation approach. Film little bits of your day and share insights, struggles, successes, and share what you’re doing! It doesn’t have to be hard, just take out your phone and film. Instagram stories help you develop a connection with people. Your viewers will learn about who you are and why they’ll want to work with you.
Hashtags On Instagram
Especially if you’re just starting out, using hashtags in your posts is going to help. Do some research on hashtags by looking at other event planners on Instagram and see what hashtags they’re using.
Since it’s most likely that you only plan local events, you’ll want to use hashtags for your town or city as well. You can use up to 30 hashtags per post, but, 5-10 hashtags should be enough. Don’t overthink it.
Pro Tip: Always tag a location in your posts for increased awareness in your local market.
Using Engagement On Instagram
It’s really important to engage your audience and also engage with your audience. A great way to get engagement is to:
- Tell relatable stories
- Ask questions
- Give insightful, actionable tips
If you do this, you’ll get lots of engagement on your posts and stories.
It’s important that you respond to all comments and messages that you receive on Instagram. By responding to everything you build trust with your audience, and once you build trust, people will feel comfortable hiring you.
Pro Tip: The more engagement the Instagram algorithm sees on your post the more it will show your post to new people. By responding to comments, you’re not only building trust, you’re creating more engagement, which is better for the algorithm.
Finding Clients On Instagram
What most people don’t realize is how easy it is to find your ideal clients on Instagram.
Here’s how to find clients and turn them into leads that come to you!
Under the search option on Instagram, there is a tab called “places”. If you search “places” in your town, the location will pop up on your feed and you can then see who has posted and tagged that location.
For example, let’s say you look up your local pizza restaurant, you can see pictures of everyone who has tagged themselves at that location.
So how can I use this to grow my business?
Look up locations near you that are popular with your target demographic. For example, if you plan parties for people in their 20’s and 30’s you might look up cool bars and restaurants in your area.
Or… If you plan corporate events you might look up companies in your area and see who’s posting. You could also target popular lunch spots around business centers.
Click on a location and start engaging with the posts from each location. You can like and comment on photos and you can even follow people.
Every time you like, comment or follow they will get a notification – and some of them will check out your profile. Everyone who goes back to your profile will see who you are, what you do, and how you can be contacted.
Some people will follow you, some people will message you, and some will end up hiring you.
The key to succeeding here is to stay consistent. You must do a little bit of this activity every day and your business will build. It’s a numbers and volume game, you can’t expect everyone to become a client.
Be patient because it will take time but eventually you’ll be gaining lots of clients with this strategy. Staying persistent, consistent and patient is the key.
Direct Messaging On Instagram
People tend to shy away from direct message prospecting but it can be one of the most effective ways to grow your event planning business. Some event planners make upwards of $12,000 a month just from direct messaging on Instagram. Here’s how you do it.
As mentioned above, the best way to find local clients is to think of where your ideal client might hang out, and then find those locations on Instagram. Once you find someone that looks like a good client, direct message them and just say hello.
You never want to pitch your services on the first message. Just say something like,
“Hi, how are you?”
And you’ll be surprised how many people respond to your message.
Once they respond you can say something like,
“Hi I was just reaching out to let you know that I love what you’re doing. I’m an event planner in the local area and I’d be happy to help you with any of your event planning needs or be a resource for information on vendors, venues, event ideas and anything else event-related that you may need help with.”
That’s it! Seriously, it’s that simple. The people who are interested in your services will continue the conversation. The people who are not interested will simply just stop chatting with you.
Again, this is a consistency and numbers game. You must message a lot of people and you must do this daily!
Instagram is full of business growth opportunities. When applying advanced social media strategies to Instagram, it can completely change your business. Always make sure to create quality content, engage with your audience, engage with new people, and start conversations!
LinkedIn Strategies For Event Planners
Most event planners seriously underestimate the power of LinkedIn. Even if you are not planning company events, almost everyone is one LinkedIn.
You can find potential brides, executives, techies, partiers, and much more. But the best part is, you can find people in your local market. Here’s how you can use LinkedIn to build your event planning business in 2019.
Content Output On LinkedIn
Just like on Instagram, you have to put content out there regularly. You should share pictures and videos of your events use your posts to tell stories.
Many people go viral on LinkedIn by telling business stories about their struggles and successes. Stories let people know what you do and they create relatable content that people will engage with.
For LinkedIn, you only need to post about 3 times a week. The LinkedIn algorithm is a little different than other social media networks. The content takes longer to get seen. On the flip side, you’ll reach tons more people. That’s going to help you grow your business faster!
Hashtags On LinkedIn
You can use hashtags on LinkedIn, however, it’s best to only use them if they are extremely relevant to your topic and to keep it to 5 or less per post. Hashtags aren’t that popular on LinkedIn and they won’t help you reach that many more people.
Linked Engagement Tactics
Even more so than Instagram, the LinkedIn algorithm loves engagement! And you can actually get your post a lot more attention by using some simple engagement tricks.
1. It all starts with your content. Asking questions, telling a story, or giving a tip will usually get you engagement.
2. As soon as you get one comment, you need to respond. Even better if you can respond and then follow up with another question. If you can get your commenter to continue the conversation, you’re creating more engagement on your post.
3. Message a couple of friends and ask them to like and comment on your post as well. Once they comment, reply to their comments and end your reply with a question. Again, keep your people talking!
If you can successfully create engagement within the first 30 minutes of your post, LinkedIn will show your post to more people. This is exactly how people are going viral over the course of a week or two on LinkedIn. It’s huge!
Finding Clients On LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a people search engine. They make it incredibly easy to find the right clients for your event planning business. All you have to do is figure out what job titles people have, that you want to target for your outreach.
For example, let’s say you are planning a women’s tech event. You can search “startup founder” or just “founder” in your area, and LinkedIn will show you lots of results. All you have to do is look for the women in the results, check out their profiles, and request to connect with them!
The key is to be creative about who you’re searching for. As a business owner, you always want to know who your core customer is, and if you do, you will be able to find them on LinkedIn.
Most people will accept your connection request and once they do, there are a few benefits!
1. You can send them a direct message and open up a conversation.
2. They will see your content in their LinkedIn feed and learn more about you and your business.
3. You’ll have access to their personal email address, so you can email them. Just go to their profile, click “contact info” under their picture, and you’ll see their email!
LinkedIn Strategies for Event Planners – Action Items
1. Post engaging content about your business at least three times a week.
2. Send connection requests to tons of targeted potential customers.
3. Open up conversations (don’t sell) in direct messages.
4. Let people ask you for help.
If you do this week over week, here’s what will happen. People will start to notice you and your business. The people you’ve been messaging will see your content again and again. You become top of mind as an event planner within your network. When someone in your network needs to plan an event, they will come to you.
And that’s exactly why using LinkedIn as an event planner can be so effective for growing your business in 2020 and beyond!
Twitter Strategies For Event Planners
As far as advanced social media strategies for event planners go, Twitter is the hidden gem. Twitter has the “near you” search feature which makes it a great marketing tool for local event planners! Twitter is full of people talking, asking questions, taking polls, and sharing information. And fortunately for you, it’s all accessible. So how do you use Twitter to grow your event planning business in 2019 and 2020?
1. You have to optimize your profile. All that you really need to do is add who you are, what you do, and how you can be contacted in your bio. I’d recommend adding your LinkedIn profile URL as your website in your bio. Of course, make sure to add a great profile pic and header image. Once that’s done…
2. Find and join conversations! That’s it. You don’t really need to create that much content. If you want to look super professional you can add some original content to your feed on a weekly basis. Twitter is much more about joining conversations than anything else. And there is no end to the number of conversations that are being held on a daily basis.
What you’ll want to do is search Twitter for key terms that your ideal customer will be talking about.
For example, you might search “need help with this event” or “I need an event planner” or “birthday coming up soon”
It’s best to make a list of phrases that you want to search for to start but as you join more conversations you’ll be adding more ideas to your list all the time.
To search for these phrases just enter the search phrase into the search box on Twitter. If you put the search phrase in “” (quotes) like this “need a party planner” twitter will search for EXACTLY those words in that order.
It’s best to use quotations so you can find the right conversations. Otherwise, you’ll get a bunch of strange results. After you enter your search term, you’ll want to click the “latest” tab and you’ll want to click the “near me” check-mark. See the image below!
The more search phrases you can think of the more local conversations you can join. The more local conversations you can join the more people will learn about who you are and what you do.
I’ve found that many time people will “discover” me on Twitter and then connect with me on LinkedIn to talk about business! It has really been an amazing growth engine for my event planning business.
Other Social Media Networks
The reason I choose to use Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter is because they give me access to my local market and they produce results!
Unfortunately, many other social media networks don’t allow event planners like us to hyper-target a local market. And many other social media networks are great for branding but do not produce immediate business results.
Facebook does have some features that can help you reach a local audience, and I’ll write about those strategies in another article. And there are plenty of other social media sites that can help you grow your business in other ways! Subscribe to our email list and get more advanced social media tactics for event planners sent directly to you!
I hope you enjoyed this article. Please share this with a friend who is interested in using social media to grow their event planning business. And, check out some of our other blog articles to help you earn more as an event planner today!
If you have any questions about how to use social media for yourself you can ask them in the comments.