7 Ways to Extend the Impact of Your Event After It Ends
Hosting an event is a lot of work. From planning and designing to implementing your vision and bringing people together, it’s easy to remain fixated and focused on the details of the day. After all, you want it to be a smashing success.
But how do you keep the momentum going after the lights go down and the last attendee leaves? Is there a way to keep your community engaged until the next event rolls around?
Luckily, with a little extra effort, you can squeeze even more out of your event by extending the event impact by providing value after everything is said and done.
Often, we’re so focused on putting on a successful event that we don’t think about what comes next. In this guide, we break down seven different ways to extend your event’s impact after it’s over.
Let’s take a closer look.
1. Offer a freebie or giveaway in exchange for contact information
Who doesn’t love the opportunity to win a free iPad? Or score a $25 Starbucks gift card? A true classic.
During the event, offer a freebie or giveaway to those who provide you with their contact information. It’s an important part of any event marketing campaign.
You can use the tried and true fishbowl method, where you provide a glass bowl for people to drop in their business cards for a chance to win an iPad. Or perhaps leverage a digital form that people can fill out on a tablet before they spin the prize wheel for the coveted Starbucks gift card.
Regardless of your methodology, offering a freebie or giveaway helps you grow a database of new contacts, which is critical for building relationships online and keeping in touch with your audience after the event.
To make this work, ensure that the reward is worth it and that the process for signing up is seamless. If people don’t feel like they’re getting something from it, they won’t sign up—and then you lose out on precious contacts for future events.
2. Follow up with attendees via email—right away
Now that you have a frothy new database of contacts, including a list of verified email addresses, it is time to put it to good use.
Your first email can be as simple as a thank-you note. A personalized note is a great way to keep your name in front of your audience after the event, showing that you genuinely care about the attendees.
Taking it a step further, include a few helpful links that direct them back to an event recap on your website or blog.
Make the email content more engaging by sending them speaker information and copies of their presentations.
Don’t be afraid to share additional materials from other sessions that they could not attend but align with their interests.
Attendees can get caught up in the fast-paced nature of the event. That said, many people enjoy the opportunity to come back to the content they consumed during the event and review it at their own pace. Or even reference it on a later date down the road.
So, providing content via email immediately afterward gives attendees everything they need at their fingertips and significantly extends the event’s impact after it is over.
3. Create videos of key presentations, panel discussions, and interviews
You have spent all this time on an event, so why not share it with the world?
Video is one of the most powerful ways to do this. It’s quick to share on social media via Instagram reels or Tiktok, simple to embed on your website, and you can easily leverage them for future marketing materials—all while helping you drive engagement after your event ends.
Here are a few helpful tips to remember when capturing videos during your events:
- Try to get permission from the speakers beforehand so that you can include their names and faces in the video clips (and not just their voices).
- Consider filming or live streaming the main speeches at your event and behind-the-scenes interviews with speakers, attendees, and other stakeholders.
- Ask your attendees why they came along, what they enjoyed most and one thing they learned.
4. Ensure that everyone in attendance follows you on social media
Make it obvious that attendees should be following you on social media during the event.
For example, display the Instagram logo with a link to your profile on the screen and a few instructions so event-goers can participate and give you a follow before the session begins.
Let them know that Instagram is the best place to find agendas, real-time announcements, and tips on how to maximize their time at the event. Make sure to include a call to action in every post to maximize engagement.
Most event software has social media integrations to help provide a seamless approach to using social media during an event.
Once the event has ended, you now have a robust follower account. A gold mine, if you will.
Now you have the perfect platform to continue to engage with your audience, build brand awareness and extend the impact of your event by sharing product updates, answering questions, and interacting with your audience months after the event ends.
5. Encourage attendees to share photos of your event
Another way to extend the impact of your event is by asking attendees to share photos of it on social media.
It can be tempting to take all the credit yourself, but if you take a step back and think about how many people were there and all the different sessions that took place, you soon realize that you alone can’t cover every angle or aspect of the event.
Encourage attendees to take photos at an event, share them on Instagram, and tag your brand and any related hashtags.
Hashtags are easy for anyone looking to share their photo on social media during or after your event. Whether they’re posting directly from their smartphone or uploading one from home later—to have their photo featured in front of thousands (or even millions) more eyes than would otherwise see it.
And because hashtags help everyone find each other’s content more easily than ever before, they’re also one of the best ways to ensure people know about events like yours. Now there is some buzz leading up to your next event.
You can even go as far as choosing the pictures you like the most and then using a photo editing tool to add some aesthetic filters to give them the same feel. This can then allow you to post a couple of albums tagging each user to generate even more buzz. Maximize the impact of your event even after it ends by utilizing an efficient auto photo editor that streamlines the process of editing and enhancing event photos, allowing you to quickly share professionally edited images with attendees and on social media platforms
Also, don’t be afraid to leverage some of the photos posted by your attendees to create user-generated content (UGC) for your profiles. After all, 79% of people say UGC significantly impacts their purchasing decisions.
By encouraging social media posting, you are building more content for your pages and will likely land more sales for your next event. Talk about a win-win.
6. Organize a newsletter
Once your event is over, don’t let the experience go to waste.
Prepare a newsletter and use it to recap the event’s highlights, share essential updates on any new developments, and include new information about upcoming events and initiatives.
Incorporate photos and videos from the event to make it more personal and fun.
Include a call to action for people who want to stay in touch with you or learn more about what you’re doing next.
For example, suppose your company hosts an annual interior design conference where attendees can learn about new design trends and furniture pieces. In that case, you might include recaps of those sessions in your newsletter and information about where they’re available and how much they cost.
You could also offer other ways for attendees to learn more: links to webinars they can watch or even an e-book they can download with all the notes from the sessions.
The purpose of a newsletter is to help people who attended your event feel connected and involved with what you’re doing even after the event has ended.
Newsletters are ideal for any event—an educational seminar or a fundraising gala—and you can use them to extend your event’s impact and keep people engaged with your work.
7. Send a post-event survey to gather feedback
A post-event survey is a crucial way to get feedback from your audience. Surveys are an excellent tool for identifying the needs of your audience and what they want, but they can also help you understand how well your event met its goals.
The information you gather is helpful to improve future events, so it’s essential to make sure you ask the right questions and get them answered.
There are a few things you should keep in mind when writing your survey:
- Keep it short and sweet: You want attendees to fill out their answers and submit them before they forget or lose interest, so keep your survey short and narrow in scope.
- Ask specific questions: Not only does this make for better data, but it also helps people feel like their input matters.
With all the work that went into planning and executing your event, it would be a shame to let the momentum fall by the wayside just because it is over.
As Dr. Suess once said, don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened.
You can keep attendees engaged and extend your brand’s reach by sharing highlights from the event on social media or repurposing videos for future use. Plus, you can do several other things immediately (like sending out thank you emails or surveys) to help make your next event better than the last.
Post-event marketing helps you extend the event impact by keeping your brand top of mind, building relationships with attendees, and providing value for months after the event comes to a close.
This post was guest written by Kelly Moser is the co-founder and editor at Home & Jet, a digital magazine for the modern era, and content marketer at Login Lockdown. She’s also an expert in freelance writing and content marketing for SaaS, Fintech, and ecommerce startups.