I write quite a bit about meeting planning, but it’s rare that I actually get to attend one. A few weeks ago, a friend of mine was working at an event in Las Vegas, and I decided to tag along. Overall, the event was a huge success. There were a few mistakes along the way, which thankfully were not show-stoppers, but they could have been easily avoided given these four pointers:

1. Going half-way on social media

In order to generate the amount of buzz needed to effectively promote your events while they are happening, you must incorporate social media plugs everywhere and all the time. Start by creating an event hashtag and post it everywhere from your slides, to your signage, to your swag, to your video, to your email communications. Then, have speakers make mention of it periodically throughout the event to get people involved. Don’t wait until the closing ceremony to promote your event hashtags otherwise, it’s just another #epicfail.

2. Assuming you have internet access

Wifi at events can be sketchy, so find out if speakers NEED to have internet access to complete their presentations. If they do, then it is suggested to either get a hard line rather than wireless, or provide them with their own dedicated network.

3. Making last minute slide changes

If you have many presenters, each with their own slide deck, it may be wise to have your AV team combine the decks in advance. This reduces complexity at run time and creates uniformity across all presentations, but it can take some time, if you want it to look good. So, please no last minute changes to slides otherwise things could get a little hairy.

4. Skipping the rehearsal

Really?!? I have to admit that I am surprised at how many people do not do this. A complete walk-through of the event, with slides, speakers, and all, is absolutely necessary. You may have rehearsed it all over and over in your head, but you never know how things will play out the day of the show. But that is why you fly everyone in 1-2 days before the live event so that you can all walk through it together.

These may seem small in comparison to the thousand other things you’ve got going on with your event, but they can definitely add up. So the next time you’re preparing for your next live event, start small by avoiding these mistakes.

For more information about how to incorporate social media planning into your event strategy, download our latest kit: Social Media Success for Event Marketers