How to Build a Content Strategy for Event Marketing


It’s the best time of year—Oscar season! As a viewer, it’s fun to analyze the dresses and hope Leonardo DiCaprio finally wins (fingers crossed!). To the film industry, however, the Oscars are more than just entertainment. They’re an important opportunity for actors, directors, and studios to showcase their best work and market themselves for future opportunities and success. So, what can the Oscars teach us about event marketing?

While most of us won’t ever be lucky enough to walk the red carpet, it’s likely that your industry or organization has its own signature event. It might be producing an annual conference, sponsoring or hosting a cultural event, or having a presence at large trade show. Whatever the event may be, it’s important to create award-worthy content when the spotlight is on!

Here are three tips to help you build a winning content strategy for your event marketing:

Plan your channel strategy

An event spans a short, finite period of time so it’s important to spend that time sharing content on the platforms that are likely to drive the most engagement. For example, Twitter is great for live-tweeting speeches, awards, and updates. Use TrackMaven to surface the channels where your audience and industry respond best, and plan to tailor your event content to those channels.

In 2014, Ellen Degeneres tweeted the selfie to end all selfies from the Oscars, which received 3.3 million retweets and 2.1 million likes. Yet, when the Academy pinned this viral image on Pinterest they received a paltry 79 interactions. Content from the Academy on other channels that referenced the Ellen selfie saw MUCH higher engagement. Ultimately, Pinterest did not drive engagement and subsequently, this was the last pin the Academy pinned. They have since focused their event marketing efforts on more lucrative channels in 2015 and ahead of the 2016 Oscars.


The before and after matter in event marketing

In event marketing, the pre-event and post-event content is just as important as the content created during the event itself. In the lead up to the event, you want to drive engagement, interest, and excitement in what’s to come. It’s important to think about how you’ll roll out all the elements of the event or announce key speakers.

In TrackMaven, look at your competition’s content around events they’ve hosted or attended. What works well and what doesn’t? Some tactical examples to look for include creating countdown content, running contests to build excitement, or showcasing the details of the venue itself. This image of the red carpet rolling out received 15 times the average interactions per post for the Academy on Facebook:

After the event, you’ll want to capture the posts and tweets that worked best and use them to promote other endeavors or next year’s event. In TrackMaven, go back and look at your top performing content across channels for the entire event period and take note of the themes, images, or videos that were most successful. This photo from the 2014 Oscars was still an impactful piece of content a year later in 2015:

Amplify your audience to drive engagement

As you publish content around your event, you want others to engage with and share it. Event attendees are the ideal audience to help expand your content footprint and strengthen your brand. Create and use an official hashtag to promote the event and get others to tag their content. Mention and tag the keynote speakers, individual attendees, or organizations in attendance. Share images that others have created while attending the event. By amplifying the message of others, you can help grow your own following and engagement. As an example, the Academy re-tweeted content from Buzzfeed and saw 10 times more engagement:

No matter your industry, events provide a unique opportunity for your organization to shine! With TrackMaven you can surface the event marketing strategies that work best and apply them to your own content. Don’t miss an opportunity to drive engagement and interest in your brand.

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