There’s been a buzz this week about the huge effort being put forth by the NFL to encompass the upcoming Superbowl 2012 in Social Media. We admire their efforts and their disclosure that they are making history with this huge project and all may not go swimmingly at first. We’ve also been reading about the opposite project being undertaken at the 2012 Olympics organization in London. The security team there is working very hard to limit Social Media use by workers while encouraging its use by athletes and attendees.
These stories inspired us to think about Social Media use at the events that we attend for both professional development and personal pleasure. An attendee at a Maroon Five concert is not likely to follow the concert promoter’s Twitter feed during the event (“Intermission in 12 minutes” would likely ruin the moment), but we would sure like to know if a speaker cancelled at CES before we trekked over to the proper conference room.
When one is competing in a division as part of a day-long event (say a ski race or a horse show) it would be handy to have the event administrator Tweet that the class is running late or cancelled. And wouldn’t it be convenient to get pinged when lunch is about to be served at a conference, or that a speaker is running late, or that Company X is offering free TShirts to the first 50 people to stop by their booth? Since we would have already opted-in to follow the Twitter feed of the event administrator these would be handy updates.
The key is to have your Social Media team on the ground for the day, ideally attached at the hip to person in charge of the Event, and thus able to issue updates and enticements throughout the day — 8am: Event open! 9am: Free coffee during the Opening Remarks 10am: Gadget Speech moved to Conference Room B. 11:45 am: Taco Trucks are outside and ready to serve lunch!, 3pm: Sade will be singing during the cocktail hour! And so on…
A well-run event keeps its attendees up on changes and opportunities throughout the day and a dedicated Social Media liaison is a Best Practice.