For a lot of event organizers, content marketing is still in a very early phase. Writing an event blog is a great tool, but you can make a lot of mistakes. They can be easily avoided.
Here’s a checklist of things one should bear in mind when blogging about your event:
- Keyword analysis: Did you do a keyword analysis before you started your blog? It does make sense to identify the most used search terms that apply to your conference or trade show. You can use the free Google keyword tool for this. Start with what you think are the most important keywords, and run them through the Google tool. You’ll probably be surprised as to what really comes up…
- Search engine optimization: Your blog should include those most important keywords as often as possible, in order to rank high on search engines. Both in the text as well as in the tags.
- Layout: Use headlines in between, add paragraphs and write the most important words in each paragraph in bold for better ease of reading. People don’t have much time today to dig deep into a long, badly written article with a poor layout. They’ll leave your site if it’s not convenient to read. Julius Solaris’ Event Manager Blog is a great example what a good design looks like.
- Headline: The headline needs to pull people in, because on social media, the headline is probably the only thingone will see from the blog post! When it’s not a good one, they’ll never click on that link and read your nicely written post. Spend as much time on creating the headline as you spend on writing the blog. I’m serious…!
- Social sharing: Make it easy for readers to share your content, by offering sharing buttons for the most relevant networks. That means: Not hundreds of them (some services offer that wide array of networks)! Rather focus on the ones that are important for your audience, and those will probably be Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, maybe XING, plus an email functionality. Fullstop. Also think about editing the line that you want the people to share (mostly the headline) and add the event hashtag to the Twitter line.
- Engagement: Respond to each comment you receive on your blog, no matter if it’s a positive or negative one. This shows appreciation and respect for your readers.
- Other blogs: Do you know what are the relevant blogs for your industry? Be active on them, comment, ask questions… This will allow you to place a link to your own event blog in the comment and drive traffic to it.Backlinks are loved by search engines! But remember: It is about real engagement, not about a sales pitch!
- Content engine: Use the content you have created on your blog to fuel your other social platforms like the Facebook page, LinkedIn group, XING group etc. Remember to adjust the content so that it is appropriate for the platform you are posting on.
- Cross-marketing: Refer to your blog in your print advertising, in press releases, on your website… Everywhere!
- On site promotion: What good is a nice live event blog when no-one knows where to find it? At a conference, it could be as simple as placing a flip-chart somewhere next to the stage, displaying your Twitter handle, event hashtag, Facebook page and short link to the blog. You can customize a bit.ly link for easy access via smartphone or tablet.
Here’s a recent article I wrote about what a content marketing strategy for your event could look like.
Find more resources at those links:
- How to create a blog (beginners guide)
- Learning about blogging
- Blog setup: 40 practical tips
- Promoting your event online without irritating people