7 ways to get the most out of social media at conferences

Summer is conference season, and we all know preparing for a conference is an important part of the experience. Social media has become a powerful tool for connecting with people at conferences, driving traffic to your booth and letting your audiences at home know what you’re learning. Below are some simple tips for being social media-ready at a conference or event.


Scott Beale / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

Plan ahead. Ensure you have a designated tweeter while you’re attending. If several employees from your company are attending, don’t duplicate efforts and post the same content. Be sure you know the basics before attending: booth number, hashtag, speakers info., etc.

Consider bringing a portable charger for your phone. Outlets can be scarce at conferences and posting on social media all day will suck your battery dry. Most importantly, post ahead of the conference. Let others know you’ll be there.

Use the appropriate hashtag. Be sure to use the correct hashtag while tweeting. We’ve seen companies use two or three different hashtags while attending a conference. This can be very confusing and you may lose credibility.

Post photos and videos. I cannot stress enough how important it is to post visual content while you’re there. People want to see what’s happening. Photos also appear more prominently on the feed and you may have a better chance of being retweeted. What should you take photos of? Include photos of employees, your booth, speakers, etc. Keep it professional. If you’re heading to a bar after, it’s probably best not to include that shot (literally!).

Engage. Retweet interesting posts, mention speakers Twitter handles in your tweets, etc.
Include names. Mention who is at your booth and include name(s) and title(s). Double check to make sure the spelling is correct.

Drive traffic to your booth. Give attendees a reason to stop by your booth. Offer prizes (gift cards, iPads, etc.) or promote a new product.

Don’t disappear when it’s over. Just because it is over doesn’t mean you need to vanish. Discuss your favorite session or speaker, what you’re looking forward to next year, etc.

Before your next conference, you’ll be fully prepared. Enjoy conference season and happy tweeting!

Photo credit: Scott Beale / Source / CC BY-NC-ND

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Employee Travel: Preparing for Summer Travel

For Kimball Communications, summer is packed with conferences, workshops and events. Our employees attend conferences across the U.S., and since we cannot physically be together each day it’s important to have a plan before traveling. You, too, can keep everything running smoothly by following this simple, yet effective strategy.


Eelke de Blouw / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)
  • Prepare ahead of time. Have an internal meeting to go over everyone’s travel plans. Be sure you know when and where everyone will be throughout the summer. Keep a calendar of employee’s travel arrangements and daily schedules.
  • Stay connected. Technology is key. Skype, voice call, text and email will keep everyone informed.
  • Be aware of time zones. Remember, there’s a good chance you will not be on the same time zone. Schedule calls with each other appropriately.
  • Delegate tasks. Make sure all your bases are covered. Assign timely tasks to colleagues. This will ensure deadlines are still met and will simplify things tremendously.
  • Reach out to clients. Ensure clients are aware when you’ll be out of the office. It’s important to let clients know there will always be someone they can reach out to if a problem or question arises.

How do you stay connected during travel? Follow #KPRontheroad to see where we’ve been, and where we’re going, this summer.

Photo credit: Eelke de Blouw / Foter / Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Summer, sunshine and social media…

davedehetre / Water Photos / CC BY-NC

Summer is a popular time for beach trips, golf outings, trips with the family, etc. Many employees take advantage of the warm summer days by taking some time off from work, but if you manage the social media accounts for your company you must make sure all accounts still run smoothly. Below is some advice to ensure your social media accounts are properly taken care of while you’re out of the office.

5 pieces of advice to follow before and during your vacation:

  •  Let clients know in advance. Make sure clients are aware of when you’ll be out of the office ahead of time especially if there’s a special promo/contest running, an issue with an account, etc.
  • Schedule posts.  Review scheduled posts for any errors including the time of day in which they go out. It’s easy to select 12:00 a.m. instead of 12:00 p.m.
  • Make sure monitoring is taken care of. Ask a colleague to monitor and manage all social media activity while you’re out.
  • Make sure other employees are aware of what’s going on. If there’s a contest going on make sure employees are well informed about it, if there’s a sticky situation on one of the accounts, etc.
  • Ensure you have crisis plan in place. Who will handle a social media crisis should one occur while you’re out?

Those are just a few pieces of advice to put your mind at ease while on vacation. I’d love to hear from other social media managers. Do you have any additional tips to share?

Photo credit: davedehetre / Foter.com / CC BY-NC

Summer Flex Hours in the PR industry

Spring is here, and employees have one thing on their minds: summer schedules. Some companies offer summer flex hours that may include half days on Fridays, longer work days during a 4-day period with a full day off during the week, etc. There are many benefits to a flexible schedule, but there are also a few downfalls to consider.

hjhipster / Beach Photos / CC BY-NC

Benefits of a flex schedule

  • More time to accomplish personal tasks. Flex schedules benefit employees by allowing them to have more time to get things done.
  • Rewards for employees. Flexible schedules can act as a rewards program for employees.
  • Employees may take less time off. Flex hours allow employees to get an early start on the weekend without taking a full day off.
  • More refreshed. Having a few extra hours may help employees feel renewed and ready to dive into the next project or task.
  • An increase in productivity. Read about how one city added a flexible work schedule increasing productivity.

Negative aspects of a flex schedule

  • Clients may not approve. Clients may not have a flexible schedule and may not be open to your company having one.
  • Looming deadlines. Deadlines still need to be met.
  • The PR world never closes. The digital world does not shut down. Emails, phone calls and comments on social media platforms still need to be answered in a timely manner.

Tips for incorporating flex hours

  • Let clients know well in advance.
  • Get clients input on a flexible work schedule.
  • Make yourself available when needed.
  • Set up a schedule for employees so they know exactly when you’ll be in the office.

Does your company offer summer flex hours?

Photo credit: hjhipster / Foter / CC BY-NC