Event coverage can be fast-paced and exhausting. There is a lot of running around, and there’s always a chance you’re going to miss some magical moment.
LUCKY FOR YOU, I know a thing or two (specifically, seven) about event coverage for capturing social media content. And I’m gonna tell you about it.
Recently, a few folks from our team covered an event for one of our clients. We were tasked with capturing photo and video content to be used on the client’s social channels. The event was hosted by a partner of the client, and was maybe the most fun and fantastic thing I did the entire month of April. (Tough Mudder presented by Merrell. Check it out.)
Plan a shot list
Covering an event should start weeks before the event even happens. Being underprepared means you could end up with a ton of content—that is totally useless. (The worst.)
Sit down and think about how the content you capture could be used on social first, then work backwards to determine what exactly you need to get.
What do you need photos of? What would make a funny/poignant/clever video?
Also, don’t forget to PRINT YOUR SHOT LIST. If you leave it at home, you will be so sad. I was in charge of the shot list at our event, and with all the running around we did it was so helpful to be able to refer to the list and check things off as they were completed. Helped bring a little organization to the chaos, for sure.
Make sure you pack the following:
- Snacks (we brought a giant tub of Goldfish and it was a #blessing to many)
- Water (so much water)
- The proper attire (don’t want to be too cold or too hot)
- Extra batteries, memory cards, chargers, etc.
- If you’ll be outside: sunscreen, bug spray, sunglasses for hot days. Hand heaters, extra layers, hats for cold days.
Capture content in more ways than one
The more ways you can capture content, the better. On our team, we had one person with a video camera, one person with a camera, and one person with an iPhone. All three of us got as much content as we could. The more variety you have when getting content, the more you’ll have to work with later. Plus, you’re less likely to miss an awesome live moment if you have three or more ways you’re grabbing content.
Get extra content
On the subject of content, get more than you’ll think you need! Get everything on your shot list, for sure, but keep an eye out for extra moments to capture. That’s the beauty of covering events—you never know what could happen that would make incredible social content!
Don’t forget about real-time content!
One more kind of content to capture—live. What kind of social media rockstar would you be if you forget to use the live features on all your social platforms?! Don’t make the mistake of forgetting to capture live content.
If possible, call ahead and ask what cell service is like at the event. That will determine if Facebook Live or Instagram Stories is an option. You could even live Tweet the event if your audience is active on Twitter.
Next, decide if you want to tell a behind-the-scenes story (“Hey, we’re here at such-and-such event capturing content for so-and-so!”) or if you want to tell an event story (featuring the event, following a specific person or group). Then put someone on your team in charge of making sure that live story happens.
Talk to people
Seriously, if you have a camera, people will want to hang out with you. They’ll think you’re super important. Use that! Don’t be afraid to walk up to people and ask questions or take their photo. You can gather all kinds of stories that could make incredible social content. Put on your journalist costume and go for it.
Go with the flow
Here’s the thing about covering an event: anything can happen. Be prepared, plan as much as you can, but realize that you’re going to have to be willing to adapt. Schedules might change, weather might interfere, cameras might break—it’s all a possibility.
Take a few deep breaths and be ready to change the plan at a moment’s notice. Everything will go more smoothly if you are prepared to work on the fly.
So there you have it…my 7 best tips for absolutely crushing it at event coverage. Follow them and you will also be an event covering all star.
Got questions? Want to learn more? Don’t hesitate to reach out!