If you’re attending a live event, there’s a good chance you’ll be taking photos, video and sharing your experience on social media.
Here’s five reasons why you should turn that content into a blog/vlog after the event.
1.It will help you process your learning
Attending a live event can be overwhelming. There is so much information coming from so many different sources, it’s easy to miss things. Taking time to reflect on the content is a great way to gather together all the practical advice and tips shared at the event. It can also help you identify key personal takeaways, as content marketing agency owner Yva Yorston did in her recent post on her key takeaways from CMA Live .
2. It will help you document your progress - and give you accountability
Taking a day or two out of your usual routine to attend a live event is good for you. You’ll leave on a high: refreshed, inspired and full of ideas. But when you get back to the desk - and the stresses of daily life - it’s easy to get bogged down and forget about all your exciting plans.
Reflecting on your experience and setting goals can be a great way to document your progress. It will also give you accountability. You’ve heard the saying ‘what gets written down gets done’ right?’ Stating publicly on your blog that you are going to take action - as Kelly Exeter does in this blog on attending Tropical Think Tank - means it’s far more likely to get done.
Craft and lifestyle blogger Eleanor Rae-Nickerson Smith has taken this one step further. Last year she wrote about her experience of attending Blogtacular and set some goals for the coming year. She followed up with a preview of Blogtacular 2017, setting out her expectations for the event and will no doubt follow up with a review.
You could even turn your preview piece into a piece of valuable content for your audience as bespoke tailor Dara Ford has done ahead of Soulful PR Live: how to dress for a conference.
The more you prepare for attending a live event - including setting out expectations for how you want to learn and grow - the more likely you are to get a return on investment.
3. You can turn it into a valuable piece of content for your audience
When you attend a live event, you’ll undoubtedly pick up tips and strategies you can apply in your own business. You may also take away useful learning you can share with your clients or customers.
Karen Reyburn helps accountants with marketing. She has turned her recent experience of attending CMA Live into a blog post on why accountants should attend good marketing events. Katya Jackson - lifestyle blogger & iphone photographer - has turned her experience of attending Blogtacular into a post on the benefits of attending a conference for creatives. And when leadership consultant Coralie Sawruk attended Tropical Think Tank, she turned her experience into a blog post: lessons from nine world-class entrepreneurs. The article identifies a key takeaway from each session e.g. ‘start with trust’ and ‘stop doing and start leading’ - a useful piece of content for anyone with an interest in leadership.
If you offer a product/service to other businesses (B2B) it’s usually easy to see how you can take your learning and turn into a valuable piece of content for your audience; a straightforward review of your time at the event can be useful.
If you sell to consumers (B2C) it can feel more challenging (but isn't - honestly!). The trick is to make it all about solving your prospective customers' problems or addressing their desires - just as you do in your regular blog posts.
So potential titles might be:
- Three things we’ve improved about our customer service since attending X event
- Why we decided to offer [insert benefit e.g. free postage or shorter delivery times] to our customers after attending X event
- How attending X event helped us launch our new [insert new product]
- How attending X event made us realise we needed [insert new feature e.g. live chat on the website, shorter delivery times, a monthly newsletter, a loyalty scheme]
- Why we’re spending more time on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter* since attending X event
Remember that you don’t need to have implemented the changes in your follow-up blog post - you just need to set your intention. Your blog content can simply be a straight ‘review’ of what you’ve learned (as in many of the examples I’ve shared). The important thing is that you make it relevant to your audience.
Do also bear in mind the fact you’re investing time and money in attending live events sends a powerful message to prospective and existing customers: if you care about your personal and/or business development, you’ll care for them too.
4. You’ll get more traffic on your website (and some visitors will buy from you)
When you blog about your experience of attending an event, you’re creating an evergreen piece of content that can be shared on social media. It will also send people over to your website to find out more about you do - for years to come (just look at all the blogs I’ve linked to in this post). Freelance technical writer John Espirian says he’s already picked up a client from his review of CMA Live 2017 last month.
5. You’ll build relationships
Live events can be busy and you may not get the chance to speak to every single person you’d like to at the event. Creating a piece of content about the event helps keep the conversation going with speakers, delegates and the organisers - long after the event has finished.
It also makes you more memorable. When you create a blog post about your experience of an event, it’s a big fat reminder to everyone who attended of who you are and what you do. Marketing expert Roger Edwards created this vlog about speaking at CMA Live because - amongst other things - he wants people to remember he is available for speaking engagements.
Remember also that event organisers will be keen to share your blog with their audience on social media and in any relevant online communities e.g. Facebook groups - getting your content in front of a bigger audience than you could hope for on your own blog.
Speakers will also be keen to share your content - particularly if they’re mentioned - which means you can tag them in on social media and, potentially, get your content in front of an even bigger audience.
Want to learn more? Find out which PR/marketing events you should attend in 2017.