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Tips for Using Social Media at Trade Shows

social media at trade shows

If you’ve been to any social or business events lately, you must have noticed the ubiquitous hashtag, a content identifier that helps to spark conversations and connect people on social media. Trade shows generally have their own, which can be valuable if you understand how to monitor and use them. A social media strategy for your next trade show should address these content tags and other ways to spark engagement with your business.

Check Out the Pre-Show Buzz

Way before you step through the door of your next trade show, you should monitor the event hashtag on social media. Twitter often is the best place to look for pre-show conversations and to get a sense of industry topics that are trending in relationship to the event. You might want to consider becoming part of an online discussion or connecting with a few presenters while you stay on top of event updates and developments. LinkedIn is also a good place for checking in with connections who may be planning to attend the same show.

Involve Your Team and Designate a Leader

Prior to the show, talk to your team members about ways they can become involved on social media. Share event hashtags, official handles, and important accounts they should follow, and encourage them to monitor pre-show posts. Once the event begins, however, your team will be busy on-site, so it is wise to designate a social media point person who is in charge of engagements if you don’t already have a social media coordinator on staff. This person should continue to monitor the show, post updates for your business, and engage with the show community.

Be a Resource at a Trade Show

As you are monitoring the posts related to the trade show, pay attention to conversations and topics that being to emerge. Strive to provide valuable content that shows your expertise and positions your business as an industry leader. Rather than focusing on sales and promotions, seek to engage as much as possible. This doesn’t mean that you have to have all of the answers. Retweet and share content that you find valuable to show your appreciation for the contributions of others within your industry.

Don’t Focus Exclusively on One Social Media Network…

The fast-paced world of Twitter, with its live-tweets, brief format, and real-time discussions, is ideal for trade shows, but other social media platforms have a place in your plan as well. Facebook feeds are much slower, and your followers will not appreciate constant updates, but consider sharing photos, videos, and occasional updates. When you have some great visual content, make sure to share it on Instagram as well.

…But Still Prioritize Twitter

It really is the place to be when you’re engaging at a trade show. Due to the pace, it’s also the best network for keeping up on trade shows you are unable to attend in person.

With these tips in mind, plan to become an active part of the social media community surrounding your next trade show. The show community already is interested in topics and conversations that are relevant to your business, and social media makes it easy to stay connected before, during, and long after the actual event. For more information on trade shows and social media, contact Premiere Creative or give us a call at (973) 346-8100.