Facebook events are a great way to spread the word about your in-person and virtual events. Putting your information up and allowing your fans to show their interest and share the event, exposes you to a whole new audience that may not have had access to your information before. However, like Facebook Groups, there are some unwritten rules your fans and friends wish you would follow, whether you are on the organizing or the attending side. It really will make everyone happier.
Facebook Events Etiquette for Organizers
Create the Facebook Event page from the proper profile
Is this your business’s event, or a personal event? Make sure you set it up from the right place so people know with whom they should share. If you’re hosting a Tupperware party in your home, you don’t necessarily want everyone in the city invited. However, if this is a fundraiser, hosted by your business, perhaps you do want to attract a much larger audience on social media.
All Business Pages can set up an event. If you don’t see it on your status update window, you simply need to enable it in the Page Settings. If you have regular or frequent events, your fans can actually subscribe to all the events hosted by your business and ensure they get notifications when you schedule them.
Don’t invite people who can’t possibly attend.
Just because you have the ability to invite all of your 1500 Facebook friends to the event doesn’t mean you should. Only invite those who might actually be in a position to attend. If your event is a sit-down dinner in Halifax, don’t invite people from Vancouver. To them, it’s just another notification they have to delete and as small as that may seem, it’s annoying.
Share a link on your Facebook Business Page
When you create the event, it will post on your Page Timeline. However, you should remind people about the event! How often you post the link to your Facebook Event page is up to you, but I would suggest at least once a week, depending on how far away it is. Remember, not all of your fans will have seen the first post, or the second, or third, for that matter.
Invite non-facebook friends
If you want to invite people to your event, but you aren’t connected to them on Facebook, you can now send them an invite by email (not everyone has this function just yet, but have a look and see if you do).
Make ticket information visible
For heaven’s sake, if you’re charging for this event, make sure it’s abundantly clear. There is a way to put a link in to buy tickets on Eventbrite, or other systems, so make sure you add that. Otherwise, people will think the event is free. Trust me, I had someone attend a workshop I had advertised through Facebook Events, and she thought it was free because the payment info wasn’t there (this was a previous iteration of the events page, though).
Facebook Events Etiquette for Attendees and Sponsors
Do not create another event page
If you are just attending the event, or your organization/business is sponsoring this event, it really is not your place to create a Facebook Events Page for it. If the organizers have already created an Events Page for it, you will be duplicating their efforts and creating confusion for attendees, i.e. which one is the official page? Which one should I follow for event updates? Which one is really collecting the RSVPs? Which one will answer my questions?
If you are the sponsor of an event and want to share your excitement and pride about your company’s involvement, please find the organizing committee’s official Events Page and share the link to that page. It is much better to have all of the traffic going to one spot than to dilute it to your own unofficial page. This also ensures your fans will receive event updates posted to that page…I assume this isn’t something you were planning to do on the you were creating 🙂
Another option is to ask the orgnizers to add your Company Page as a co-host. This will add the event to your Company Page event listing on Facebook. However, the person setting up the Events Page must have admin access to your Company Page in order to complete this.
Invite your Facebook friends
When you find the official Events Page for the event, by all means, invite any of your Facebook Friends you feel are appropriate to invite. This shows your personal support for the event and goes a long way towards ensuring the event’s success.
Please do let the event organizers know if you are planning to attend the event. Your choices on the Events Page are Interested, Going, and Not Interested. If you are unsure, or not ready to commit, by all means, click Interested. This shows your Facebook friends you have found an interesting event and are following it. That helps to spread the word about the event.
If you are not planning to attend, and this is a large, corporate event, there is no need to apologize to the person who invited you for the fact that you cannot attend, in a public post on the event page. Chances are that person won’t see your post and even more…they likely don’t care a whole lot if you can attend or not. It’s really just noise when a pile of people start posting “Thanks for the invite but I’ve got to do my hair that night.” Of course, if this is a small, personal event at a friend’s home, that response may be warranted. If this is a concert, a fundraising dinner, a protest, or any other type of “corporate” event where hundreds of people are being hinvited via Facebook events, there’s just no need to respond. Simply click on the appropriate RSVP and you’re done.
Check in at the event when you arrive!
Admittedly, this is something I don’t often do, but checking in to the event on Facebook can further promote the event to your friends, which is always nice for non-profit and charities.
Post appropriate photos & tag the event/host
If you’re taking photos during the event, by all means post them on your Facebook Timeline when you get a chance. Make sure you tag the Facebook Events Page, too, so the organizers can see your perspective on the event, and perhaps even share your photos. Organizers put a lot of time and effort into big events, so it’s always nice for them to see when their attendees have had a good time.
I’d like to think it goes without saying you shouldn’t spam a Facebook Events Page with links to other events, or unrelated topics, and that you don’t start an online fight with others who are posting on the Page. (Hmmm…I guess I said it anyway.) Are there any other etiquette tips you’d like to share for using Facebook Events Pages? Share them in the comments.