Social Media: useful tips & tricks
by Katie Bennett, Festival of Chichester social media officer
KEY THINGS TO REMEMBER:
Use high-quality images. Pixelated photos never look great for promotion. Make sure images are at least 3MB.
Don’t clutter your posters. You need 1 good image, ticket info, the website URL and a date. If you have too much information on a poster this isn’t effective. Canva is a great free tool to create promotional material and offers templates for you to use:
QR codes are great additions as people can use their phones to directly access your selected link. Free apps can create them for you, or alternatively you can create QR Codes online. I use this App.
This article also provides a selection of QR Code generators.
Videos – Landscape is best for posting on Facebook, YouTube or Instagram, unless you’re using Instagram Reels or TikTok. If you can add captions to your videos, do! This makes videos accessible to more people. Facebook and YouTube can auto-generate captions, with the option for you to edit and make precise. Always look into this. It does take time, but accessibility is of paramount importance.
Instagram reels – These can get good viewer stats, as they are shown to non-followers. Reels must be in portrait for best viewing. iPhones can crop videos to make them portrait (though this doesn’t always work – it depends on how your video was framed when filming).
You can do simple things on social media to be successful. Don’t overcomplicate your posts. 1 sentence and a picture can be more effective than a paragraph of text. Keep up the posting, as consistency is key, especially in the lead up to your event.
If you have 10 seconds of rehearsal footage, post it. If you have photos of your musicians or actors in another production, ask if you can use those photos and publicise your performers and their experience to engage with your audience.
For example, if Jade Bloggs is performing in your production of Pride & Prejudice, she may have also starred in Wuthering Heights at an open air theatre. Use her experience, photos, and personal stories to publicise your production (with your performer’s permission!). Your social media posts will therefore be unique to you and your company. However, remember to credit your photographer. Photography is just as important as the content and helps towards the promotion of all involved.
Ultimately, social media is very adaptable and can be used how you see fit. There is no right or wrong answer, so use a platform that works for you!
Facebook is adaptable and works for most forms of media. It is also good for posting links to event pages, tickets and websites.
Facebook Business Suite is a good tool to use and can be found at the top of your business/performer page (not on a personal account). You can connect your Facebook and Instagram pages together and therefore are able to schedule posts at the same time rather than separately.
Scheduling is a useful tool as you can create a plan and post in bulk.
Facebook Creator Studio is best for scheduling videos. If your video includes clips from multiple cameras, please be aware that videos sometimes fall out of sync for some reason. I believe this is to do with frame rates, and ultimately the fact Facebook wasn’t built for videos in the same way as Vimeo or YouTube is. You can use tools such as Handbrake (a downloadable app) to convert a video to mp4 and correct the frame rate across the video. This usually sorts the issue out.
Instagram is a very visual site. It is good for images and videos.
Use hashtags to increase the likelihood of your post being discovered.
e.g #FestivalOfChichester #FestOfChi22 #Theatre #Music #Chichester #GreatSussexWay #WestSussexEvents #CultureSpark22 #Arts #Sussex
Tag people in your photos, this includes us @FestOfChi. If you tag us, we get a notification and can share your post.
Use Instagram stories to post quicker responses, for example ‘In Rehearsals’, Book Tickets etc. On Instagram stories you can add links (using the paper clip icon). Therefore, you can directly link to tickets.
Links do not work in regular posts, so use the link on stories or post a link in your bio (at the top of your account) and direct people to there.
Twitter is good for words, pictures, and links. It is a chatty, sociable platform. If you tag people, remember they will get a notification – so do remember to always be kind. Twitter is great to interact and chat with other organisers and those attending your event.
Use Tweetdeck to schedule tweets ahead of time.
You can post links and they will reach your followers, but this platform does downgrade tweets that have a link, so if you post a link ideally tweet it underneath your original post, in the thread, for people to see.