Using Social Media and Old Content to Gain New Attendees

OK, we have already covered that your conference needs a blog, but now that you are jamming away at getting content, how can you leverage all of your posts to gain new attendees. That is a question that has an easy answer… simply use social media.

Many event blogs post content and then it goes into the trash (archives) never to be seen again unless someone is already on the blog and then goes hunting for it or perhaps they stumble across your epic literary works while doing a Google search for “Smoking Hot Coeds”……yes, the title of your post was “Hot Session on Coed Education Smokes Competition” but hey… Google is not perfect.

Leaving old content to sit and rot is really bad thinking because what you have already written can be used to great effect, in fact, it can be one of the most important things that you today. You just have to get it back out there so that the masses have it delivered right to their eyeballs with minimal effort. American’s are a lazy lot; you almost have to pour it into their brain for them to pay attention and this is what must guide your thinking and this is how to do it.

Using old Content is easy if you are on the WordPress Platform

If you are on the WordPress Platform (which your conference or event website should be), the task of re-purposing old content and pushing it out via twitter is made super, super simple through  the “Tweet Old Post” plugin. This handy little widget randomly selects an old post based on your criteria and sends it out on a time line that you set.  There is no easier way (that I have found) to get that old content working for you rather than it loafing around your blog like a stay at home 30 year old son that is too lazy to get up and get going. They are gonna stay around the house… put em to work.

We use this plugin to send out an older post every twelve hours and what we have found is that our older posts are finding new eyes and new comments and the discussion continues even though some of the posts are over a year old.

Connect your twitter account to your Facebook page and BAM, you are done.

If your conference or event blog in not on WordPress

For those not on WordPress, take a minute every day and select an older post and use the copy and paste method just like you were posting any other link, it is that easy.

Put your content to work

Put those old posts on Facebook and twitter and watch what happens.  You might be amazed at the traffic spike that your event website has and we all know that more traffic means  more attendees over time….listen Skippy, nothing on the internet is instant, unless of course you are Charlie Sheen, so you have to be a little Zen about it and know that this will take a bit so go and have a coffee or a beer and check back in a week.


Not everyone gets this though and it can be frustrating to get this point across. I was having a conversation with a client over the weekend and encouraged her to try this method… he balked and said “people have already seen that, they will remember” and “Why, we have already posted it, it is already out there”.

To these I answered “so what?” if they remember they will just not click.  Retweeting an old post is not going to get you banned to the outer reaches of Siberia or get your fingernails pulled by a big dude with a mask over his head… really it isn’t so give it a go.

Her other point is a huge misconception, yes, it is already out there… has it been seen? Probably not.

I was on program for the past week and what flowed through my twitter stream is now lost somewhere down river and I am not jumping in a boat to go get it, so those posts will eventually drown under the weight of future posts that are already piling on top by the thousands… in twitter land, one posting is not enough.

Should you opt to re-purpose and reuse your old content, you will likely find that people don’t remember and will rediscover a great read  or they will have never seen a post and the content will be brand new and exciting to them.

Either way, it is a win for the reader and a win for the conference or event.

You have to remember that most people are not waiting with bated breath for your conferences next post, your next announcement or your next photo montage… sorry, they are not. The world is going about its business and unless you go out and grab them, people don’t remember, they don’t care and they won’t come looking for you or your posts. They won’t… it is up to you to go and make them look because the first time you posted something, they may have been in the bathroom, reading a book or actually doing their job.

Think about this, how did you get here? Twitter, Facebook, an RSS Feed? You took an interest at some point and now I have reached out and you paid attention. If you had missed that tweet or Facebook post would you be here? Probably not, I know my limitations and I know that I do not have throngs of fans waiting for me to pontificate, so in a few months, this post will go back out and hopefully someone will have a read.

Do not be afraid of trying this out, the worst that will happen is that you will have a couple more twitter updates, another Facebook link and maybe some more attendees…. ohhh that is BAAAAD, more attendees, hell NO., you certainly don’t want that….

This is an exercise that takes mere seconds a day and can reap untold rewards and I bet that maybe, maybe, one or two of you will actually try it out and to those two, I say bravo and good hunting.

Keith Johnston

Keith Johnston

Keith is the Managing Partner of i3 Events but is most widely known as the outspoken publisher of the event industry blog PlannerWire. In addition to co-hosting the Bullet List and Event Tech Pull Up Podcasts, he has been featured in Plan Your Meetings, Associations Now, Convene, Event Solutions, and has appeared on the cover of Midwest Meetings Magazine.

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