From Hit to “Can’t Miss”: How to Drive Event FOMO

Five ways to draw serious excitement for (and during) your event

What do your Facebook friend’s vacation to the Mediterranean and a live stream from your favorite band’s concert have in common? They’re classic FOMO inspiration, or the millennial-friendly acronym for a “fear of missing out.” And though FOMO began as a slightly niche expression you’d see peppered around social media, the acronym has now become an actual psychological term that describes “a pervasive apprehension that others might be having rewarding experiences from which one is absent.” 

From an event planner’s perspective, however, the psychology behind FOMO can be an effective tool for driving excitement around (and attendance to) your meetings. From surprise shows to lots (and lots) of selfies, we show exactly how. 

1. Post frequently

If it wasn’t posted to social media, it never really happened, right? 

Well, no––but unless you’re posting continual updates surrounding your event, the only people who will know it’s occurring are the ones who are there. Fuel attendance for future events by posting real-time picture and status updates before, during and after your event on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook, or whichever channels your audience tends to prefer. 

2. Create your own hashtag 

Posting regular updates on your events is a good strategy for driving FOMO, but creating a unique, shareable hashtag is even better. The strategy provides an effective tool for housing pictures and updates from your attendees in a single place (click on any particular hashtag on Twitter or Instagram to quickly see all posts with the tag). 

3. Surprise, surprise 

If you want to foster FOMO, you have to plan something that will make people genuinely envious they aren’t attending your event. Throwing in an off-the-agenda wild card––whether it’s a surprise performance, a giveaway or some other special treat––is one of the quickest ways to get attendees snapping pics on their phones (and subsequently posting those images to social media). 

4. Integrate Snapchat geofilters

Assume Snapchat filters (you know, like that dog-face filter your 12-year-old daughter is constantly posting to social media) are reserved for kiddos? Think again. You can actually purchase your own geofilters with a customized logo from Snapchat that can be overlaid on photos, creating a fun, unique way for attendees to bond. Check out more Snapchat-specific FOMO tips here

5. Encourage selfie expression 

Speaking of Snapchat, you’ll definitely want to encourage attendees to take tons of selfies (posted with your unique hashtag, of course). Consider setting up a fun photo booth with props to get attendees converging (and subsequently laughing).