Community, Content, Marketing | San Francisco

SF Community Managers Talk Event Strategy at #SFCMGR Meetup

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Photo credit: Carlo Almendral, @carlobff

Photo credit: Carlo Almendral, @carlobff

This week the SF Community Manager Meetup group gathered for a panel discussion focused on event planning, strategy, and deciphering ROI. I invited Brianna Haag, Marketing Manager @ Eventbrite, Lauren Sherman, Marketing Manager @ Taskrabbit, Emily Castor, Community Manager @ Lyft, and Tony Mataya, Developer Relations @ Twilio to discuss their experience with events and how they navigate this large part of community management.

Though hard to capture all of the incredible insights from this conversation, here are a few highlights thanks to Kate Klepek of Reinventing Events who took amazing notes during the discussion:

  • Your budget should drive everything
  • TaskRabbit Facebook fan page has been the most important tool the have - took a page from Lyft's community book who also has a very active Facebook Lyft Group
  • Invest in a process of how to participate in events as a sponsor and figure out what your criteria is. What is the sponsorship value to you?
    • Some tips include vetting the organizer clout, projected quality of attendees, relevance to your audience, and knowing how this will directly help your brand
    • Make sure you have a relevant presence and targeted message
    • Measuring the impact of events is both qualitative and quantitative
      • Eventbrite has great event reporting tools
      • Survey your attendees
      • Create a process to measure effectiveness that works for you and your team
      • Track where your product or service inbound traffic is coming from
      • Track every piece of publicity around the event to see what is driving traffic
      • Google Analytics has incredible tools, tracking and new dashboard features - all free
      • Free events will receive a lower attendance rate - if you charge a minimal amount people feel obligated to show. Donate these funds to a worthy cause.
      • Using Evenbrite vs. Meetup
        • Eventbrite is very customizable, allows planners to capture leads and take advantage of reporting tools
        • Meetup is a good space to build out a community around reoccurring events

Event tools recommended by our panelists

  • Eventbrite for tickets and attendee organization
  • TaskRabbit for any last minute help, errands or on-site logistical help
  • Use of hashtags and encouraging people to share for a visual representation of the event
  • Eventstagram can stream all social items from an event
  • Marketo or Pardot to move your event leads through the marketing funnel
  • Meetup.com for community building

Community Manager Resources mentioned

  • Eventbrite's hosted tweet chats called #meettheexperts
  • Community Manager Breakfast at UserVoice
  • Be proactive and reach out to mentors
  • Many groups in the industry found on Meetup
  • Shared learning so reach out to other people who have planned successful events

Thanks again to our panelists who volunteered their time and insight to community management and events. Our next meetup will be planned for May so stay tuned!

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