Instagram is an undeniably powerful tool for visually marketing a product or service. However, we all know that a one-size-fits-all approach to promoting your brand simply doesn't work. So how can you use Instagram to boost your event attendance, elevate your brand, increase ticketing sales and generate that distinctive 'buzz' around your event? Here are our top event Instagram tips.
1. Create Value for Your Users
Don't leave your account dormant until the last minute: your Instagram page needs to show signs of life long before the big promotional venture. Set up a social media calendar and stick to it. Balance out your content with content that's genuinely valuable to your followers. Sure, the occasional sales post is absolutely expected and even necessary, but you should be giving your followers an element of FOMO and intrigue, too because nobody likes a hard sell.
Offer glimpses of the 'behind the scenes' of your brand and hold exclusive flash sales. Check out what your competitors are doing, too, and do it better. And remember: you need to earn your followers' attention, so give them something worth following.
2. Collaborate with Influencers and Brand Ambassadors
From industry leaders to micro-influencers, there's no denying the power that endorsements hold over the marketing ecosystem. Not only can they boost your event's reach, but the collaborating with the right influencers can give your event an air of prestige that is otherwise hard to achieve. If you have the budget, make a list of three top influencers you'd love to promote your event. Make sure you're clear on what you expect of them: regular promotions, tagging, maybe a blog post or podcast.
If your budget is small (or non-existent), make a list of 15-20 smaller influencers, and offer a free ticket in exchange for a promotion on their social media. You can also offer exclusive promo codes for influencers to share with their followers.
3. Instagram Stories are Your Friend
Instagram stories offer a 24-hour, temporary insight into your brand. The fact that these snapshots are temporary means they're better equipped to create a sense of urgency around your event. Not only can you test content, but you can also offer your followers teasers and engage with them directly through newly-launched questions and surveys. Plus, if your Instagram account is set up as a business account, you can use stories to connect directly to your ticketing page.
4. Use Sponsored Ads
If you want to get your content in front of the right people, you'll need to accept that advertising absolutely needs to be part of your strategy. Once you have your Instagram nailed down, you'll soon learn what posts perform best in terms of likes and engagement. You can then go on to create an ad out of your best performing posts.
The benefits of advertising on Instagram are multitude: first, Facebook's advanced targeting algorithms will help you reach a very specific audience. Plus, aside from your profile, an ad is the only place you can embed a link straight to your ticketing page. And lastly, Instagram advertising gives you a clear ROI that you can actually track and measure.
5. Offer Freebies and Organise a Giveaway
Everyone loves a freebie, and giveaways and competitions are an excellent way to engage your existing followers while attracting new ones. Whether you offer a VIP, backstage experience or a free ticket to your next event, make sure you ask your followers to tag a friend in the comments and follow your page as a pre-requisite. The tags in the comments help your brand gain more visibility in the algorithm, thus furthering brand awareness.