We all have seen the difference between the feeds of people who really “get” social media, and those who don’t. Their images seem to pop off the screen, you really connect with their captions, and you might even feel compelled to retweet their content. What’s their secret? It may be true that some people are just born with an eye for spotting content opportunities. But if that doesn’t come naturally to you, you can still achieve social media greatness.
A great place to practice creating more engaging social media posts is the next event you attend. You know there’s going to be some interesting visuals and compelling insights, so you’re already in a place that will lend itself well to social content. So, to put yourself into a “content creator” mindset, here are six things you can do before, during and after the next event you attend to create better content.
1. Do your research
Take a moment to look up relevant handles and hashtags you may need to tag in your content ahead of time. This includes everything from the venue to the speakers. Using the right hashtags can help your content get discovered by others following along online. Tagging the right accounts (watch your spelling!) can often lead to being retweeted and reaching new audiences.
2. Plan out what you want to capture
Events can be overwhelming—from networking with fellow attendees to rushing to grab another coffee before the next speaker begins, it’s easy for a whole event to fly by without you taking a single photo. Don’t make that mistake. Have a loose plan for what you want to capture, such as shots of the crowd really connecting, a clever brand activation, a speaker delivering an impactful thought, or an interesting statistic on a screen. While you can’t always be sure these moments will happen, you’ll be more tuned in to recognize when they do, and be primed to capture them.
3. Take a beat before posting
It’s common to feel the need to post everything as it happens, but you can find yourself losing focus (and followers) if you start flooding your feed with everything you can think of. Rather than hastily creating content in the moment, allow yourself the time to think through what you want to share. Breaks between speakers can be a great time to reflect on what you’ve just heard so you can create a more engaging, meaningful post.
4. Capture what you can
Don’t misinterpret the above advice to suggest you should put the camera away. On the contrary, grab as many photos, videos, quotes, comments and key learnings as you can while you’re there. Having a library of photos and thoughts to choose from gives you options—you can post “as it happens”, but you also have the luxury of sorting through what you captured after the fact to find the most compelling content.
5. Put the message before the medium
The event has concluded, and you’re now armed with a camera full of photos and a notepad filled with great thoughts. Now is the time to sort through it all, and craft your most thoughtful posts. While it’s common to start with thinking about what channels you want to post to, the best approach here is to figure out what you’ve got first, and then decide what channel will best help to bring it to life. Was it the one particularly hard-hitting fact? Twitter might make the most sense. Do you have a few insights that build to make a larger point? Maybe Instagram Stories would be a better way build that narrative.
6. Keeping your content alive
Once the event is over, your content doesn’t have to go into retirement. Breathe some life back into your content by looking for new opportunities for it to be relevant again. For example, if you went to an event that explained how brands are using TikTok and there just so happens to be a really viral TikTok campaign making its ways around the Internet, resurface your content to give it a second life. Is it your one-month “anniversary” of attending the event? A similarly snowy day that reminds you of that morning? Did you bump into the event’s speaker at Starbucks? There are hundreds of great reasons to “recycle” a fact or lesson from the event—get creative.
What many don’t realize is that by simply putting a bit more thought and preparation into your posts, you can really step up your social media game. Now that you’re armed with a framework and six tips for success, you can head into your next event to make a bang on your social feed.
This article was initially published by our sister company NATIONAL Public Relations – read the full post, written by Anne Stubbert, manager of digital strategy, here.