Social marketing 101 when you’re at networking functions 19 May 2017 We’ve all been there, we’re at a networking event and someone starts talking about Instagram, then, everyone starts talking about their Social Media Do’s and Dont’s and all of a sudden you’re not sure what’s what anymore. Don’t worry, here’s all you need to know about how to use Social Media to your advantage when you’re at networking functions. Think ahead Generally, we book these functions in our calendars in advance so you’ve got time to pre-plan your Social Media posts. Adhoc posting is fine but if you’re really wanting to make an impact and represent yourself and your business you need to plan ahead. Things to consider are: Why are you going to this function and what do you want to represent? Are you a sponsor, guest of honour etc? If your logo is displayed somewhere or you’re going to be receiving an award make sure the photos you take represent your involvement as well. Who will be there that can give you exposure as well? A smart way to boost your exposure is to take photos with prominent people that will also tag you in their posts. Write a Draft This goes for your caption and hashtags, you can use up to 30 hashtags in one post. Hashtags should be relevant to your post and the event so focus on things like your location ie Perth, the venue you’re in and also what sort of style you want your photo to be ie if it’s a team shot you can use #teamwork etc. Save this as a draft in your phone so once you’ve taken your photo you can post straight away. Take the shot Before you dive right into taking your photos, consider two things. The frame What angle is your photo going to be taken on and what will be in it? Do you want it to be quite dynamic with lots of contrast or quite plain with a clean view? Make sure you clean your camera lens first so the picture is as clean and crisp as possible. The lighting The apps on your phone can only fix bad lighting to a certain degree so be careful where you take your photos from. Do not stand directly under light or have the lighting coming from behind your focus point. Now that you’ve got the right shot, it’s all about enhancing it by selecting the right filter and cropping the image correctly. Remember that a filter just enhances a photo, so pay attention to how your optional filters change things like shadows. As for cropping, you don’t want too much empty space around your focus point (a great tip is to always shoot your images in landscape so you can crop them better). Post it It’s time to send your post into the social media universe (at the right time of course). Posting at 1 am will give you a different result to posting at 10 am so think about it a little bit (the posting time will also change the relevance of your caption). If you have planned well enough and have the draft caption saved you should be alright to post quite quickly if it’s late at night hold off until the next morning when people are awake and ready to engage with your post!