Marketing Events Using Social Media

Marketing Events Using Social Media

Marketing Events Using Social Media

by , Originally Posted on the Social Media Club of Dallas Blog,
Social Media Club of Dallas

As a Social Media Professional, you may be called on to promote all manner of events, activities, sales pursuits, and causes. I recently was employed to help promote an arts, entertainment and networking event in Dallas and thought I would share our methods so others can benefit. I’d also like to hear your thoughts so we can all grow together.

Social Media to Promote Events

Key Takeaway

The key to Marketing events is getting the word out to your target audience, communicating the value and providing impelling calls to action.  A Prayer for good weather usually helps as well.

The Opportunity

In June, I was approached by a local Event Concierge about handling the Social Media Marketing for an event planned for September. They wanted to deliver an event that would feature local artists and entertainers, provide unique networking opportunities and raise money for a few non-profits. The event location was the famous former Starck Club, remodeled and renamed ZOUK. Because it sounded like my kind of event, I signed on to drive awareness and attendance as well as serving as the Emcee.


When you start with a blank slate and brainstorm about how to promote an event of this nature, many methods are considered. We considered  Print Ads, Radio Spots, Billboards, TV, Bus Ads, and of course Social Media. With a small budget and a desire to fund non-profits with event proceeds, we chose to focus on using Social Media, PR, and email marketing to drive awareness and attendance to the event. By including the 50 plus event participants, we could leverage online posts and increase engagement.


With our strategy determined, we considered the universe of online tools and narrowed the list to the following:

Facebook Events Page Facebook Page
Twitter LinkedIn
Google+ Google Docs
MeetUp YouTube
SocialCam Vine
Blogging Eventbrite – Ticket Sales


HootSuite was the primary method of posting texts with links and pictures. For video I used SocialCam to capture, tag and post to SocialCam, Facebook and YouTube. Here are a few examples:

Content Development

Our next step was to develop content. We started with a Press Release format with all the facts and figures. This was used to draw content for the Facebook Page and Facebook Event Page, The Eventbrite page, eflyers and social media posts. The next big “bucket of content” was developed by interviewing the artists and performers who would participate in the event. This content was very important in adding interesting posts along with a call to action over a 60 day period leading up to the event. I created an Editorial Calendar by writing a unique post for each day. We posted on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google Plus and the content was scheduled in HootSuite.

One-One-One Meetings with Participants

This was the single most important activity in driving awareness and attendance. There were 50 plus artists, entertainers, participants, supporters and non-profits involved and we held one-on-one meetings with the majority of them. We scheduled 30 minute sessions over the course of a few days and:

  1. Invited all of their Facebook friends using a purchased tool so one message went out to all at once
  2. Found out what the stakeholders understood about social media marketing and explained how they could help promote their business and the event. I allowed them to call me with questions up to the event for no cost.
  3. Persuaded stakeholders to Like, Comment and Share the posts we published. This was the second most important activity in driving awareness and attendance. When they did this once a week their friends would learn of the event, understand its uniqueness and see a call to action several times. This gave us the “Frequency & Reach” needed to drive several hundred people to the event.
  4.  Crafted a message and executed an email marketing blast to those on our email list. I also sent out two announcements about the event in my July and August newsletters and blogs.

Results & Lessons

The event was a huge success. The artists sold some of their art and jewelry, the performers and artists were able to reach new people and create new relationships, awareness was increased for the non-profits, ALS, Dress for Success and Art Hunger and we raised money even though rain meant that attendance did not meet our projections. Here are a few specific results and lessons learned.

FB event RSVPs – 1,399
Ticket Sales – 600+
Actual attendance – 369

  1. No amount of marketing can overcome weather.
  2. FB sharing & comments works to get the word out.
  3. Most ticket purchases take place in the two weeks before an event, especially two or three days before the event.
  4.  Unless the event has sold out before, early ticket pricing and incentives have little impact on early ticket sales.

I hope this is helpful to you in marketing your next event using Social Media Marketing. I look forward to seeing your comments in the comments section of this blog or reach out to me by one of the methods below.

J.R. Atkins

J.R. Atkins MBA
Author, Speaker & Consultant on Social Media, Mobile Apps, Sales & Marketing
Something Different Companies


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So What Do You Do?

“So what do you do? I see you everywhere but I’m not sure what you do.” I hear this on a regular basis, so I thought I’d share three projects from my current work to help explain what I do. On my website you will see that I am an Author, Speaker and Consultant. But what kind of consulting? Take a look and tell me what you think.

come to ArtOfficial on 9/19/13Project 1 – ArtOfficial September 19, 2013 at ZOUK – Social Media Marketing and Emcee

ArtOfficial is a very unique event combining Visual Art, Performing Art, Music, Business Networking, and Fashion while raising money for non-profits. You may have seen posts on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter or YouTube that I created with the help of the participants. We are using HootSuite to post content, monitor activity and comments. The goal is to have over 1000 people attend the event from 5:30pm when the doors open till late in the night when ZOUK closes. Please come join us. (Purchase Tickets)

J.R. Atkins is Director of Social Media for Orpheus Chamber SingersProject 2 – Orpheus Chamber Singers 2013 Season – Director of Social Media

As the name suggests, Orpheus is a group of professional singers performing Chamber music. The group performs a series of concerts each year, usually in the DFW area. For example, Orpheus Chamber Singers will perform a series of works to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the John F Kennedy assassination on November 10th in the City Performance Hall in the Dallas Arts District. As the Director of Social Media, I use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube to promote events and communicate with the community of supporters. Check out the season schedule at

J.R. Atkins is Marketing Director for the Ghosts of Wimberley MovieProject 3 – The Ghosts of Wimberley Movie – Marketing Director

A full length feature film ”The Ghosts of Wimberley” is being produced by Pecan Street Productions of Austin Texas in conjunction with SOMA Inc. of Dallas Texas. The screenplay is written and the film directed by David A. Cox of Austin, an award winning director. I built the website and the social media properties and post frequent content using HootSuite. You can see interviews with the Director and Producer on YouTube, the Website, and Facebook as well as pictures on Facebook and Twitter. Filming will begin in fall of 2013 with the movie releasing in 2014.

So there you have it. Besides speaking and writing books I work on projects in the area of Digital Marketing, Social Media and Mobile Apps. I look forward to reading your comments. Please reach out via:

Phone: 214-707-1705

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