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Digital Activation for Events: Why It’s Important

Katie Biersach

Public Relations Account Coordinator

Picture this: You’ve spent months organizing your public event or corporate party and planned every physical detail possible; however, how much thought did you put into your online presence? Conversations nowadays aren’t just in person – they take place in the digital world, too.

Create a community and an experience by activating your event online. Not sure where to begin? We’ve got two easy options to get you started.

1. Have a proactive hashtag strategy

We support Appleton’s Octoberfest, an annual community-driven event that hosts more than 200,000 people each year. To give festivalgoers a way to join the conversation, we created the branded hashtag #AppletonOctoberfest for use on social media.

It’s crucial to proactively promote your hashtag online prior to the event to build awareness. Without pre-event promotion, your audience might create their own hashtags, leaving you with scattered conversations. Your end goal? Host a cohesive hashtag conversation.

By using a hashtag, we also provide people with a space to share their experience before, during, and after the event. Posts that use the hashtag can be shown in one feed on their respective platform, so it’s easier for people to keep up with an event in real time across multiple channels. Also, post-festival, we can easily find and measure the results of all digital conversations by searching the hashtag on each social media platform.

appleton octoberfest crowd

2. Foster experiences with a Snapchat filter

Snapchat is a great platform for generating digital conversations and awareness for events (It’s also just really fun, am I right?!). The purpose of a Snapchat filter is to create a memorable, shareable experience for people with a unique filter they can send to their friends.

When you create a Snapchat filter, you can specify the exact location where it’s available and the timeframe it’s active. We created the unique Snapchat filter below for Octoberfest by incorporating some of festival’s fun, traditional aspects – the Bavarian hat and moustache! Also, we made a graphic to share on our other social channels to promote the filter before and during the event so our audience knows to take advantage of the fun.

katie with appleton octoberfest snapchat filter

Remember, these digital tactics can be, and should be, integrated into events from small business parties to large-scale occasions. Don’t forget about your digital presence!

Want to try the filter out for yourself? Join us at Octoberfest on Saturday, September 29 from 9 a.m.-6 p.m.! College Avenue in downtown Appleton will be filled with live music, food, and family-friendly activities. The event is a fundraiser for local nonprofit organizations and their projects, and over the past 37 years, Octoberfest has been able to reinvest over $2.5 million back into the community through grants.

Make sure you check back each week for #PRbrief updates from the Element team – you don’t want to miss our tips and tricks of the trade.