Notes from the 2nd Annual Megatweetup in Boston and What I Learned

Posted: December 18, 2010 in Social Media Blogs
Tags: , , , , , , ,

On December 16, 2010 I attended the 2nd Annual MegaTweetup In Boston hosted by Joselin Mane (@joselinmane) of BostonTweetup (@BostonTweetUp). The event was well attended, with several hundred people there at any one time. This was the 500th event held at the Microsoft NERD Center since they started hosting them in 2009.

I went to learn. I went to see how other places run tweetup events so I could take these lessons home to help make our own events successful.

So what did I learn? The best thing I can tell you is to create ‘buzz‘ both before, during and after your event.  Here are some tips on how to do that:

  • Create a GREAT invitation! Most of us are using EventBrite for these networking events. Add video from past events, pictures, a great description. Then personally invite your friends sending direct personal messages to them (NOT automated one…)
  • Make sure you have things to-do for your guests and set that expectation in the invitation. Things like you want to generate X number of tweets (or a record as they were trying to do in this case), have facebook or twitter games they can play while they are there (Play140 is interesting you can follow them @Play140).
  • Make sure everyone is checking in on foursquare. Create buzz in the invitation that you want to create a ‘swarm’ or a record
  • Have GREAT food and drinks.
  • Have some well known names there if you can get them. Someone in the industry or very well know. Last night I got to meet Lane Sutton the 13 year old social media guru. If you really want to ‘wow’ them consider skyping in a well nown social media guru to give a short talk or a ‘wish I was there’ type of speech.
  • Involve IT technical people if you can to help with the event. Live streaming, computers set up strategically so people can use them, the large screen displaying the tweet cloud and twitter activity was genius! But you will need help with technical people for this kind of work. Plus they can be tracking the stats for the event for you. Having Technical People at the event ensures the techie aspects of your event keep running smoothly. Remember, although this is a social networking event, these are people that LOVE techie toys so the more you can incorporate this ‘wow’ factor into the event the better.
  • Pick a simple unique hashtag for the event. Make sure people use it when tweeting. If its not simple, it’s too hard to type in and people won’t use it! Keep it to one word. Also make sure you use a hashtag for the state you are in. These hashtags help with trending topics and by using your state with it you can become a local trending topic! There was so much buzz within the event with people tweeting that people who were not there were tweeting they wished they were! This adds to the trending topic and creates buzz outside of your event. I am still using that hashtag today as I tweet followup about the event.
  • Get great pictures and video. Make sure you post these on blogs, websites and tweet about them after the event. It lets people see what happened at the event, gets them to take notice AND makes them want to attend the next night.
  • Use QR codes! Learn about them and work them into the event. If you have vendors at the event, make sure they are using them. They get the publicity and hopefully repeat business! You can read more on QR Codes here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QR_Code

Most of all remember it takes time to build a solid following of people who want to attend your events. Do not be discouraged. Do a post-mortem after the event with your organizers and discuss what worked and what didn’t. Then move on to your next one taking the lessons learned with you.

Happy Tweeting! Hope to see you all at our next event!!

~Kathie

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