You subscribe to a certain marketer’s emails, blog and tweets. He writes a blog post saying he’s headed to the Incredible Fantastic Marketing Symposium tomorrow. The next day you get tweets he sends during his airport time, and a little later he sends you another update telling you he’s arrived and he just met Joe Rich Bucks Guru!
Have you had this experience? Next, he sends you updates via his blog, tweets, Facebook status and emails filling you in on all the details and sharing some of the new ideas he’s picked up. Really, you can’t help but feel like you’re there yourself, and you’re really into it. Near the end, he tells you to watch out for an incredible deal he’s putting together with Guru’s 1, 2 and 3, and when he sends the offer, you can’t help but check it out (and maybe even pounce on it, what the heck!)
So how did he manage to hook you into sharing the whole experience with him, and maybe even making a purchase you hadn’t planned on?
Sharing a live event with your readers isn’t magic, but it does take some skill to pull it off effectively. And this isn’t just for Internet marketers attending conferences – this is for anyone in any niche who is at a live event. Maybe you cover local sports on your blog, or you’re a foodie at a culinary show, or you’re a book reviewer going to a writer’s conference. Whatever the event, if you can effectively share it with your readers, you can amp up your professional credibility by several notches in one weekend while increasing your readership and even your sales.
Here are 9 tips for effectively live blogging an event…
1. Know your purpose. What do you hope to get out of your live blogging? Do you want to better connect with your readers? Educate them? Increase your readership? Sell a product? By knowing your purpose going in, you’ll have a much better idea of how to proceed. For example, if you’re looking for new readers, you’ll be spending more time on Twitter with real time updates. (Don’t forget to ask for the retweets.)
2. Get it right the first time. At a live event you don’t have time for rewrites. That’s why you’ve got to get it right the first time so that you can spend as little time as possible rewriting and correcting mistakes. Speed is paramount – after all, if you have to spend 100% of your time writing, you won’t have time to network or even enjoy what’s happening.
3. Go for quality, not quantity. Maybe you’re at a weekend training and you’ve got six different classes to attend. Go to all six and blog about each one, right? Well, no. It’s better to pick and choose what you’ll be writing about so that you can provide high quality content your readers will enjoy. If you’re trying to cover everything, you won’t cover anything well and you’ll just end up fried because you’re not taking breaks. Not to mention the fact that your readers may not appreciate getting six full blown 300 – 700 word updates in one day.
4. Share golden nuggets, not War and Peace. Let’s say you’ve chosen 3 of those 6 classes to attend. Now then, don’t cover them play by play or word for word. Instead, simply pick out the juiciest bits and share those. And if you’re tweeting, don’t forget to use the hashtag for the event so that people can find your tweets.
5. Make it personal. That is, don’t give a book report. Instead, put your own personal spin on what you’re reporting. Have a point of view and SHARE IT – otherwise your coverage will be no different from anyone else’s.
6. Be a real reporter. Real reporters don’t simply take what is offered – they ask questions, they get interviews, they investigate what’s going on and they even get the pulse of the entire event. Who can you talk to? What can you discover? Find angles of your own and not only will your reporting be more interesting – you’ll also find that because you’re being proactive, you’re enjoying yourself infinitely more then if you were simply a passive observer.
7. Team up. If you’re going with a friend or colleague, you might work together on writing and promoting your content. If not, get someone to help you with promotion so that you can focus exclusively on creating great content. For example, they can submit your posts to Digg and other sites for you, thereby freeing you up to focus solely on content creation.
8. Get questions from your readers answered at the event. Your readers will become even more engaged if you ask them for questions they want answered from someone there at the event. Think of yourself as their representative and take polls on what they want to know. Again, if you have an assistant, they can help you with this.
9. Recap the event. This can be your most popular post, so spend some time on it. Recap the highlights, add in things you didn’t write about previously and highlight the biggest takeaways.
Pssst: This is also a great time to plug the recordings of the event if you are an affiliate. 😉