When you spend countless hours planning for and organizing an event, it’s important to remember that one of the biggest factors that will determine your success is how well you get the word out.

Pre-event promotion doesn’t have to be daunting. In fact, with the right apps and some targeted use of social media posting, you can make sure that your investment of time and money will pay off when the big day comes.

Make sure the focus of your pre-event promotions is to get people talking about your event to increase that buzz and to whet their event appetite so that excitement builds as your event approaches.

At the very beginning of your pre-event promotions, don’t forget to first create an event hashtag so you can include it in all your posting and social media alerts. An event hashtag is one of those simple things that has huge impact since it will help your attendees stay connected and in-the-know of the event conversation. The most effective hashtags are as short and unique as possible.  Using a search feature in twitter and facebook, you can check out a hashtag to make sure that no other competing event is using that hashtag and that it’s not actively affiliated with something else.

Once you have your hashtag ready to go, it’s time to dive into your pre-event promotions. There are, of course, lots of apps you can use to help you out, but here are two of the more powerful apps that will help you get your pre-event promotions rolling in the right buzz-filled direction:

Hootsuite is one of those simple-to-use apps that helps you post across multiple social media channels from a single dashboard. This is a great free app for providing nuts and bolts information about your event and sharing event news while also sprinkling in teasers that can help you boost event visibility and attendance.

Once you’ve added your social media network profiles to your Hootsuite dashboard (here’s how), posting across multiple channels at the same time is as simple as clicking your mouse.

And you can choose to post right away, or you can schedule your pre-event posts to go live over a period of time.

Some of the social media channels HootSuite supports are:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • WordPress
  • FourSquare
  • Ping.fm
  • Mixi
  • MySpace
  • Ning

Bizzabo is a cloud-based app that calls itself the “all-in-one event success platform”.  Bizzabo gives you a lot of options for feeding into the event buzz that you’re after. It can help you do everything from creating an event website to email marketing, text messaging, and social media posting. In short, it’s the type of app you turn to if you’re looking for better and more comprehensive ways to connect with your attendees.

And yes, it can also help you plan and market your event. But even more than that, with a little pre-event planning, this is an app that you can encourage your attendees to use to boost their own networking and improve their event experience. They can use Bizzabo to:

  • see which of their current LinkedIn connections are also attending the event
  • create their personal event agenda
  • make note of interesting people they would like to connect with
  • explore the event sponsors
  • send and receive messages from other attendees
  • search for attendees who would be good for them to meet
  • get details about speakers

As the event organizer, once you set Bizzabo up, it’s free for your attendees to use. And when your event registrants go to Bizzabo to register for your event, they have to do so with their LinkedIn profile. This ensures that your event Bizzabo users are real people who are actually going to attend your event so everyone can feel safe using it for their networking.

So, don’t let pre-event promotions scare you, or make you feel as if they are going to take up all your time or budget. Just get your hashtag ready to go, and then reach for a couple of effective apps that will give you that buzz-building edge.