WHAT IS ALL THE BUZZ ABOUT ?
A great question, if you are consumer or a business partner this is exactly what you are going to ask when you see another company's event- What's all that buzz about ? Things have changed in these past years, and if you haven't made enough noise about it, the chances are you will fail in your goal of getting the maximum consumer and business attention of the world. Yes, in short you want people to ask this question.You want to evoke this curiosity about the event you are hosting or the product launch you are going to do. Why would you want this- the answer is simple you want more customers, you want more businesses to interact with you and you want that golden opportunity to convert those conversations into the sales. Until you get the platform where you have the attention, you wont be able to make an impact, hence no sale, no money !
THE CORPORATE EVENTS ARE GETTING BIGGER AND BETTER
The world is changing, we are truly into the era of information and social media age. Companies are no longer just focusing on non-digital marketing and advertising, and even if there are any, they sure are struggling to drive their businesses. Eventually, the most profound impact of both digital and non-digital marketing is: corporate events are getting bigger and better ! I'm going to take Software and Technology sector for a reference, many large tech firms are tightening their belts. Not much of a surprise that San Francisco is the hub of all the tech events and conferences every single day.
Salesforce.com Inc., for example, recently held the Dreamforce conference week. The event was attended by almost 70,000 people. Microsoft took a unique approach of its own and set the Guinness World Record for the Globe's largest ever app development marathon.A total of 2,567 developers participated in the marathon. VMware attracted almost 21,000 people to VMworld—a conference that attempts to set the annual agenda for users trying to modernize their computer rooms. Oracle's years ago milestone event OpenWorld is a big hit. It's considered the No. 1 gathering for a Tech conference in San Francisco, despite all its participants pay an admission fee around $2,395 while Dreamforce was a free session. This year Oracle expects 50,000 people at the event and over 100,000 watching the event online through various digital and social media channels. It's quiet evident that corporate events are getting massive than ever before.
WHAT BIG COMPANIES ARE MISSING WHEN IT COMES TO SOCIAL MEDIA BUZZ ?
One of the problem that succumbs a big organization is when it stops thinking like a start-up. Yes, you will notice a lot of big firms getting into a status quo mode, and starts rejecting few basic business strategies just because they seem start-up like. Let's dig it deep. For example, I'm a big tech firm with a global workforce of over 100,000 with 1000+ offices across all the continents of the world. I hold a big tech event such as Salesforce.com Inc.'s Dreamforce every year. I setup a team for the event, I allocate a big hefty sum for it and I do ample of marketing in order to gain the lime light. Mind you, a start-up firm will struggle in almost all three things mentioned, the reason is simple they do not have the resources, they have limited budgets and they can't spend too much on marketing. In short, if you are a big company you have a big advantage, but big companies miss a big trick, even though a basic one, that is "Employee Engagement".
Just Imagine if you are a start-up what will be your first step if you are planning for a big tech conference. You will seek out to your co-workers, isn't it? Common sense! Yes, you get together, you distribute tasks and responsibilities, and together you plan your online marketing and social media activities for the big event. Next, you will see everyone in the start-up company talking about the event online- blogs, social media, guest posts etc. This is where big companies make big blunders, they market and advertise about the event a lot to the outside world but keep on forgetting their huge workforce. Big companies have to spread the awareness about its big events not just to the outside world but also to its employees. They should first create a positive environment and buzz about the event within the organization and then to the outside world. Make it a big thing inside your company campuses, get every employee interested in it and what this event can bring to the company. Almost, each and every employee in the company uses one or more social media channel, just imagine if you can get your employees talking about your event online. For no cost, you will create a massive social media buzz about the event that you are soon going to host.
HOW BIG COMPANIES CAN LEVERAGE EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT FOR CREATING A SOCIAL MEDIA BUZZ
One of the biggest advantages of big companies is their big workforce. Employees take pride in spreading the good word about the company they are working for, and if as an employer you can engage them in company events, you can very easily motivate them to promote the company events online. Another advantage of big companies spread across vast geographies is that they can together create a lot of buzz across the world at the same time. Engage employees in various contests and activities in your remote offices spread across other nations and continents. Invite employees to the big events who can cover the event online even before the actual event starts. Take employees who either run web-logs or photo-blogs for the events. Motivate employees to talk about their experiences at the event with fellow co-workers, this will motivate other employees to be part of it, a win win situation for both the employer and the employee.
In the end, you have to realize that company's employees are the people who are actually building the products or the services and they are the one who can best understand the customer problems or expectations. Company events will give employees the opportunity if not direct customer interaction but at least understand what customer needs are and what are customers reaction to the new products. In the end, as a big company you will end up not only saving some good money that you would have spent on marketing and advertising of the event, but also seeing a content, happy and satisfied workforce where people want to work for you.