How to Make Your Venue or Event Instagrammable for the Holidays

How to Make your Venue or Event Instagrammable for the Holidays

By now, we all know the value of social media and how user-generated content provides value and drives the success of our marketing efforts. Why not make it easy for our visitors to help spread the word and create a zeitgeist for our events and venues? The holiday season is a perfect time to give this a try, because there is already a sense of magic in the air. 

Here are a few easy tricks to get you going in the right direction:

  1. Set the scene
    When you are designing your event, consider how you can craft impactful and visual areas that create engagement for your visitors. Is it a lighting display on a wall or within an entire room, or is it clever staging and music that sets a mood or atmosphere? Know your audience, and develop an environment that incites conversation and photography.
  2. Create an experience
    Put yourself in the visitor’s shoes…what would make your own experience more engaging? Use your brand to create connections. Maybe it’s a zoo that uses lighting to bring the wild alive at night or a museum that collaborates with an artist to create an exhibit that is spectacularly photographable.
  3. Make Instagram come alive
    To encourage visitors to share their social posts of your event, project a live feed of your social accounts on a wall or in a room. It’s a great way to incorporate your visitors into your actual exhibit or presentation, which in turn generates more excitement from participants.
  4. Create a unique hashtag
    It’s a no-brainer to create a hashtag specific to your event. If your event is annual, add the year to keep the branding going. Everyone from new brides and grooms to public figures to brands has their own hashtags, to follow and measure engagement.
  5. Give instant gratification
    Go offline to create an impression online. Set up a destination where visitors can print out their Instagram photo – thanks to the branded hashtag (Instaprint or Social Playground). You may print out hundreds of images onsite but end up with hundreds of thousands of impressions online.
  6. Encourage self-expression with a community tie-in
    Is your event tied-in to a charitable cause? Find a way to match the community effort to social media. Maybe it’s T-shirts you write on that people can wear or hold up or a write-on wall with your hashtag and photo ops. It’s always a good thing to promote something that benefits the local or wider world community.
  7. Tie your Call-to-Action to a reward
    It’s important that any call-to-action is tied to value. “Sign up now for your free item” or “download now for your free guide” are great ways to create engagement and to measure success.


Let’s look at a few examples of well-executed visions for social viral moments.


Zoo Lights

Zoo Lights Installation


Art Installations at Museums – art in the Instagram age

Yayoi Kusama's Infinity Room


Museum of Ice Cream

Museum of Ice Cream


Refinery 29 – 29 Rooms.

Refinery 29


You Tube Video


Whatever your event set-up, there is always the opportunity to create a space just perfect for photo opportunities. It takes creativity, some strategy and a sprinkle of holiday dazzle to make an impact that lasts on Instagram. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone, because this is a different game entirely. You want something memorable, possibly just short of fantastical, so that your visitors’ photos will create a world that lasts far beyond your event. Go on, let your imagination take flight! It is the most wonderful time of the year.  

About the Author

Amy Kelley

Amy is the Global Digital Content Marketing Editor at GES. With a strong background in content marketing, social media, and communications, she is a passionate writer and self-confessed word geek. She is also the founder of a non-profit and a health and wellness online community.

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