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Promoting Your Next Event Using Social Networking Tools

July 17, 2010 by  
Filed under Social Networking Tools

It is virtually indisputable –  the web is the foremost communications technology of the 21st century.  It is even supplanting phones; the cutting edge in mobile phone technology is in expanding their functionality to include computer-like abilities and web accessibility.  As a new generation moves into the workforce, their tastes and habits will permeate the work environment. and that means, increasingly, communicating via the internet and, especially, social networks.  With that in mind, here are some suggested sites, networks, and methods to consider when promoting your next event, business meeting, conference, seminar, or social or networking event:

1)    LinkedIn – You may not have heard of LinkedIn.  It is a social network, like the more popular Myspace and Facebook (discussed below), but it is more professionally-oriented.  It allows you to create a profile showing your work experience and credentials, and then create a network from your business contacts.  You can use LinkedIn to reconnect with old employers or co-workers, request introductions to people outside of your network, and, yes, create and promote events.  LinkedIn is a good tool for spreading the word about professional, business, and networking events, as it is a business-oriented social networking site.

2)    Facebook – Long the dominate social networking site in the United States, and gaining ground rapidly internationally, Facebook, like LinkedIn, is a social networking website.  It is more general in purpose and, much like LinkedIn, allows you to post events and invite people from your contact list to attend them.  Since it is more relaxed and socially oriented, Facebook would make a better platform to promote social and networking events; however, among today’s newest entrants to the workforce, promoting or planning business meetings through Facebook is not out of the question.

3)    Myspace, which has recently stumbled in comparison to its main competitor Facebook, still promotes a strong membership, with over 250,000,000 users internationally.  Long a key site for promoting bands, DJs, and parties, it is not out of the question to use Myspace to promote a social, charity, fundraising, or networking event.  It is a large and international platform and, with the right contact list, can be just as effective as other social networking sites.

4)    BrusselsAgenda – A new site aimed primarily at the EU marketplace, BrusselsAgenda.eu tracks meetings, conferences, seminars, networking events, and so on in Brussels, the EU, and the world at large.  Members can set alerts on the site to be informed of when events matching their criteria are posted.  Alternatively, users can post, at no charge, their own events.  The site can then automatically populate information relating to the event, including local hotels, driving directions, nearby transportation hubs, and can translate the information into the main EU languages.

5)    Evite.com – Lets users generate custom electronic invitations.  Evite is geared primarily towards social events, but could also be used for networking or fundraiser type events, depending on the audience.  Evite does have one advantage over the social networking sites in that the invitation is emailed to your potential guests – they don’t have to already have an account (unlike with Facebook or Myspace, where you’re typically inviting people from your contact list who are already users of the service).

No matter the specific service you choose to use (or if you choose to use all of them!), remember that the service is just the medium – your message and event must be compelling enough to garner the participation you want.

J. Mikula is a business professional, consultant, and writer.

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