What drew you to the developer conferences and events you attended in the past? And did the conference organizers or event host send you useful information afterwards? Event promotion and post event follow-up are two crucial elements of hosting developer virtual events. But they’re also two of the most intimidating parts of hosting virtual events. Fret not, they really don’t have to be that hard.
In this final article, we’ll walk you through how to promote a virtual event. We’ll also provide you guidelines on event follow-ups to help make your next event better. Let’s dig in.
If you missed out on the first two articles on event topics, descriptions, planning, and hosting, here’s part 1 and part 2 of our developer virtual event playbook.
Different people use virtual events to achieve different goals. For developers, these are the most common goals they want to achieve through virtual events:
- Share their experience
- Help others learn
- Establish their expertise
- Mentor other developers
- Grow their network
To achieve these goals, you have to promote your event to maximize event attendance. While maximizing attendance may sound a bit like “marketing language,” it really just means trying to invite more developers to attend your event. Whether your goal is to share knowledge or to grow your online presence, the higher the attendance, the more people you can share with, and the faster your network grows.
How do we do that? With event promotion strategies.
Event promotion refers to using marketing strategies and channels to inform and attract audiences to attend events. For developer events, the methods and channels might include social media, developer communities, emails, and even blogs.
To promote your event, you first need to create an event webpage. This page should include the event details and also act as a registration page. While event websites can be created on any virtual event platform, including LinkedIn, not every platform will actually allow you to “host” with them. This means social media websites, such as Facebook, shouldn’t be the primary event website. You can, however, create events on social media platforms like Facebook as a way to promote your event.
One thing to keep in mind when promoting your event is that the average attendance rate ranges from 15-30%. So if you want at least 30 people to show up, you’ll need to get at least 100-200 registrations. If you want to share with a bigger crowd, you’ll need to boost your event registrations even more.
In the next section, we’ll walk through different methods, content, and marketing channels you can use to promote your virtual event.
If you’re not sure how to write good event details, read the first blog here.
There are many event promotion ideas and social media channels you can combine to create your event promotion strategy. It doesn’t have to be complicated, but your event promotion strategy should include different channels, content, and formats to boost event registrations.
Regardless of what your event marketing strategy ends up looking like, delivering value to potential event guests should always be your main goal. For example, if you’re sharing a career related talk on social media, let your target audience know how attending your event will help advance their developer career. Now, let’s jump into how you can successfully promote your event to drive registration and attract more event attendees:
Share your event website with colleagues, friends, and connections
Whether you’re an experienced speaker or new to speaking, the best people to share your event page with are colleagues and friends. It may feel a little embarrassing at first, but having a colleague attend is great as not only will you have a familiar face in the crowd, you’ll also have the opportunity to get direct and honest feedback from them.
Now, you can just send the event link to your colleagues in company group chats, but what about friends and connections outside your office? Here are some common and effective social media platforms and social media posts format:
LinkedIn is a great place to promote virtual events. Since your event theme will either be technical or career-related, your connections on LinkedIn are the perfect target audience.
If you plan to host a technical event, you can reach colleagues, ex-colleagues, and connections with shared interests and expertise. By sharing on LinkedIn, you’ll reach people who already find your experience and knowledge relevant. Promotion for career-focused talks are also very suitable on LinkedIn. As most people on LinkedIn use it for career purposes, anything that seems interesting or helpful to their career will attract them.
Here are two examples of LinkedIn event promotions by past Codementor Events speakers:
Rahul, Android Lead at Facebook and Stanford Lecturer, re-shared a post on his event, How to overcome imposter syndrome in tech:
Veerle, Managing Director at Analytic Health, wrote a detailed post about her event — Building software from scratch, the user-centric approach — and designed a square image for LinkedIn:
Twitter is great for quick, real-time updates. You can get creative with your event promotion content, build threads on your most popular posts, or do a bit of a mix and match.
If you’re connected with a lot of like-minded developers and speakers, Twitter can be more effective than LinkedIn. Generally speaking, Twitter is a more authentic and casual social media channel. Even if you don’t have a large Twitter following, you should still post about your event, and ask a few friends to retweet. 🙂
Here’s an example from Rene, Developer Advocate at Ombori, for the event Deadlines & estimations: What do I do with them? on Twitter:
![Rene Pot Twitter Codementor Event Promotion](https://ucarecdn.com/d093b0fe-490f-4ca3-b4fe-20011b0bf5da/=> width=70%)
Depending on where you’re located and who you’re connected with on Facebook, Facebook can be a very powerful social media platform for event marketing. If your Facebook connections are mostly family and friends, you can leave it out of your marketing channels. However, if you are connected with developers you met through other conferences, events, or hackathons, Facebook is great for experimenting with formats and content you want to use to promote your event. Since Facebook allows long form content, unlike Twitter, you can include more event details in your posts.
YouTube is one of the most effective event marketing channels but not everyone runs a YouTube channel. If you happen to run one, you should use it. If you already have a following, you can upload 30-second teasers to get your followers to check out your event webpage.
If you don’t run a YouTube channel, you can try to connect with developer YouTubers for a 15 seconds shoutout to your event. Most of the time, this would be considered influencer marketing, so influencers might charge money for this. But if you happen to have some influencer friends, reach out to them!
The general rule of thumb is to share your event on every social media channel you have. You can simply share the event webpage link, add some written content for some personal touch, or get creative with images, videos, and some memes and gifs.
Get creative with event promotion visuals and content
Since we’re on the topic of creative content, experimenting with a mix of different event promotion content is always a good idea for social media posts. Depending on which social media platform you choose and the nature of your connections, the written content would differ. For example, LinkedIn posts would be more formal and career oriented compared to the natural, authentic tone of Twitter.
To spice things up, here are some more visuals to get your target audience interested in an upcoming event.
Sharing the same event page visual can get boring on social media. Create attractive images that potential attendees would find interesting. For example, you can share an insightful graph from your talk or a funny (but relevant) image that will catch your followers’ attention when mindlessly scrolling through their feed.
Short 15 to 30 seconds videos of self introduction and event promotion is a great way to connect with potential attendees. The video content format is more personal, engaging, and fun. It allows you to show off your personality a bit and make you more approachable.
Here’s an example of the video teaser Sylvana, Software Developer at Codecademy, created for her event, React with TypeScript – Build a React component together.
You can make short videos like this and share them on social media for any upcoming event!
Memes & GIFs
Memes and GIFs are fun visuals that actually drive event registration on social media. You can create your own event memes and gifs, or you can find memes and gifs that align with the virtual event’s topic. A quick trick is to turn a short portion of your snippet video and turn it into a gif! Here’s an example from Sylvana again:
Whatever content you write and choose, make sure they provide helpful information about the event and value to potential attendees. Visuals are very helpful, so make sure to include at least one or two visuals when you share about your event on social media!
Reach out to developer communities you’re a part of
Apart from the social media platforms we‘ve mentioned above, there are other developer communities you can reach out to. Whether it’s WhatsApp, Slack, Discord groups, or other communities like Reddit, Dev.to, and Medium, you can share the event with communities you’re involved in.
Before deciding which communities you want to share with, ask yourself how involved you are with the communities. If you don’t regularly participate in them, share about upcoming events sparingly. For chat groups you’re in, sending a short and sweet message with the link to the upcoming event website is perfect.
For Reddit, Dev.to, and Medium, we’d suggest writing a related blog post that sets up the stage for the event. Since writing blog posts can be time consuming, you can consider this option after the event by transforming the event content into written content to reach more developers.
⚠️ Warning for Reddit: Before you start crafting your post on Reddit, make sure you have enough karmas! If no event marketing promotions are allowed, do not share events in those subreddits. You and your event page will get banned.
If you’re not sure which communities to share with, a good rule of thumb to follow is to only share your virtual event with communities you regularly have exchanges and dialogues with.
Using email marketing strategy to promote your event
If you happen to have your own mailing list, send them an email about your upcoming event. If you don’t, don’t worry. Most people don’t. However, email marketing is very effective for event promotion.
The ideal solution is to find a virtual event platform with a sizable curated mailing list that will promote your events for you for free. You can also reach out to newsletters to see if they’d be happy to promote your event for you. However, most newsletters mention cost quite a bit, so finding the right platform may be the most practical solution. After all, getting 30 people to show up to an event requires at least 200 event registrations and even more exposure.
So what now? What if you’re just not good at promoting things? Does this mean you can’t host developer events anymore? Of course not. We’ve got some solutions for you.
We’ve given you a lot of tools and ideas to help you reach more event participants. However, event promotion can be quite time consuming and difficult. You should always share your event page on your own social media, but if you don’t already have an online presence, it would be quite difficult to reach enough developers. As such, finding a virtual event platform that can assist you with promotion is the best solution.
Codementor Event was built to help developers host successful online events. Events hosted on Codementor Event will be shared and promoted to our community, which includes 500K+ newsletter subscribers and 50K+ social media followers – all for free! By helping you host a successful event, we’re helping the global developer community grow together.
We know it seems strange that we’re doing all of this for free. But it really is that simple for us — we want to help developers learn remotely and grow professionally through hosting successful events.
Why post event follow-up is a must-have
Whatever your event goals are, following up with your audience afterwards is critical. At the very least, you want to thank your audience for attending the event. If you recorded the event, you should also share the event recording with everyone who registered for the event. But most importantly, as a speaker and host, you want to follow up to gain feedback on the event.
Sample post event follow-up message
While posting messages on the event page is not the most effective way to follow up with your attendees, it’s the most accessible post event follow-up channel. Here’s a sample post-event message we’ve written for you:
Thanks to everyone for registering for this event!
I really enjoyed our time together just now. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the event through this 2 minutes survey. If you couldn’t make it live, we missed you! Let me know why in the survey, and here’s the recording of the event. In case it helps, here are the slides I used during the talk 🙂
Register for my next event on [date]: [title] and feel free to reach out to me anytime on LinkedIn and Twitter!
I’ll see you next time 👋
Sample event follow-up social media post
In addition to writing a thank you message on the event webpage, you can also post quick follow ups on social media. Since you won’t be able to gather feedback on the event through social media, one or two social media posts are enough. You can share a thank you post, the event recording link, or a mix of the two.
Sample post event follow-up emails
Event pages and social media platforms are good options, but email is actually the best channel for post event follow-ups. You can thank your audience, gather event feedback, and share event recordings. If you have the email list for those who registered to your event, send them one to two emails after the event.
Don’t worry if you don’t, we’ll talk about how we can help with that. But for now, here’s a typical post-event follow up email sequence:
Thank you + survey email
Thanks for registering for “[event title]”. I’d love to hear your thoughts through this 2 minutes survey. Even if you couldn’t make it live, let me know why 👇🏼
EMBEDDED SURVEY (Tools: Sprig, Typeform, SurveyMonkey, etc.)
Event recordings + promotion email
Thanks for joining me as I shared about “[event title]”. You can now watch the event on-demand by clicking “Watch recording” on the event page. You can find the slides for the talk in the comment section as well 🙂
Register for my next event on [event date]: [event title]. We’ll be talking about [a one sentence summary of your next event].
Hope to see you soon 👋
Now, if you don’t have a mailing list to reach out to or the time to build the survey, Codementor Events will take care of all the post event follow-ups and share event feedback with you. With that said, we’ve given you all the strategies, channels, and content you might need to complete and gauge the event experience.
We believe feedback from attendees is crucial to help you become a better speaker. So make sure to spend some time on designing the survey and choosing the best channels to reach everyone who registered to your developer virtual event.
Wrap up: host your own developer virtual event
With the first, second, and this final article, we’ve walked you through the entire process and provided practical tips on hosting developer virtual events. In this article specifically, we talked about leveraging different event promotion tactics and using different social media channels. We also talked about why post event follow-up is so important and what you need to achieve your goals as a developer speaker.
There are many benefits to speaking at developer virtual events. We believe the primary goal is to make every developer a better and more holistic developer. If you’ve never spoken at developer virtual conferences or virtual events before, or have had a tough time gaining traction in past events, Codementor Events and our developer-focused team is here to help.
Find out more about Codementor Events or, if you’re ready, become a Codementor Events speaker now!