How to brand and promote your next event
How we applied TEDx principles at the Nigeria Internship Fair ‘16
The Nigeria Internship Fair is an annual event by Stutern created to fast-track the intern hiring process. Employers get to have a speed-dating session (chats) with the talents, after which they can follow up with them. Likewise, interns get a chance to show-up and put their best foot forward. Also, it serves networking and educative purposes to the attendees.
Prior to the 2016 event, I wrote about the Internship Fair which was and still is the largest internship fair in Africa considering that not many people do dedicated internship fairs(perhaps, you can point me in the direction of anyone bigger). Then, my angle to the story also looked at what Internships would offer both the Intern and the Employer. I think it makes a good read, so do check it out if you are interested in learning more about what internship offers.
In this post, I want to show you how things have changed since then (at least from my lens).
Teamwork is invaluable as different people need to be responsible for the different aspects of the event
If TEDx events are anything to go by, they mention 6 things (1 of which is TED specific) that are crucial to the branding and promotion of events (ideally, their TEDx events but we borrowed a leaf from the other 5). The five things are logo, event site, social media, promotion & press, promote your talk.
Here is how we responded to all of the necessities suggested by TED.
1. Logo and design
Our logo was designed by ace designer, IC Parklins — former Stutern talent (intern who got a job via stutern). Also, Parklins worked on many of the subsequent designs for the fair.
2. Event site
We (this was specifically Kehinde and Taiwo Ayanleye’s) created a dedicated page for the fair hosted on Stutern’s website. Since it is a once in a year event, it makes sense to take it down after the event and then reinstate as part of the marketing for the next event.
This new site coincides with the Stutern website makeover which Taiwo mentioned in his 2016 year recap (cited above). And if you scroll down the current site, you’ll see an addition — a collage of speakers/panelists (including HRs from companies like Airtel, CcHub, Andela, Chocolate City, Jobberman, Konga etc).
3. Social media
For this event, we (I led this) didn’t have to create another social media account since we had existing ones. Hence, we simply developed creatives that were sent out regularly to keep us at TOMA for our online community.
Here is a typical (reminder) tweet from 2016:
Also, remember with social media hashtags are important. In the tweet above we didn’t quite get the hashtag right as singular they don’t communicate what the event is about. We ended up settling for #NIF16
So now, you can go online and search for #NIF16 and you’ll see memoirs of the event.
4. Promotion & press
So, we (I created the press releases that were approved by the co-founders) created press releases for the different online bloggers we had partnered with such as BellaNaija and PulseNg. Also, we sent out email updates and posted on our company blog.
5. Promote your talk
While we were live at the event we tweeted pictures from the event. This served as a reminder for people who were intending to come but had forgot or were still contemplating. Also, after the event we tweeted about the #NIF16.
Alongside, one of our media partners, PulseNG created a follow-up post on our just concluded event which also helped us in promoting the event.
Then we (Taiwo) also mentioned it in the 2016 recap post.
In all these, there is a tendency to miss out on the role of pictures for preserving memories. Hence, our friend, Rotimi Okungbaye came through with a camera and took some amazing shots at the fair. Many of which have been used on the current site.
PulseNG also took some nice pictures which they featured in their post-fair post.
Also, our operations and logistics were primarily managed by Funto Koya.
We also got amazing volunteers for the event which Lade Tawak helped recruit.
In the end we had an amazingly successful event at our maiden edition of the fair.
Hence, the drive/motivation to continue.