The Core - A Blog by DMA Solutions
Jessie Donlon
Posted by Jessie DonlonOctober 7, 2020 6:00 AM

The biggest show of the year in the fresh produce industry officially begins next week.  Each year when Fresh Summit rolls around, so does a wealth of marketing opportunities for your brand. This year, even after being transitioned to a virtual show, the importance of your brand and the way you present yourself throughout the virtual event, remains extremely important. Beyond creating your marketplace page, one of the most effective ways to elevate your presence during Fresh Summit is with the use of social media marketing. When we aren't able to meet face to face, the next best thing we can do as brands is to show up digitally.  In this post, we're sharing our social media team's tips for maximizing social media during Fresh Summit.

Social Media Tips for Fresh Summit


Tagging Tips

  • On Twitter, make sure to tag #FreshSummit and @PMA in your tweet
  • For Instagram and Facebook, tag @producemarketingassociation and #FreshSummit
  • On LinkedIn, tag @produce-marketing-association


Posting Recommendations

  • When sharing a post on a social media network, make sure to include a CTA (call to action) that ignites a click, a like, comment or share
  • Be sure to include links to the important information that you want people to know about your Fresh Summit offerings or a direct link to your Marketplace Page
  • Highlight what's new, especially if your product is included in the Fresh Ideas Showcase
  • In other words, share the information on social media that you would normally have "displayed" in your booth at Fresh Summit


Pre-Show Social Media Prep 

If you expect to do all of your Fresh Summit social media posting and sharing while the show is in motion next week only, you are sure to either be disappointed in the quality of your results, or overwhelmed with how little time you have to dedicate to managing it alone. 

Make sure your team starts planning the content you plan to share next week now, before the show begins. This strategy helps you in two ways: 1) giving you a guideline and plan for what to share next week ahead of time and 2) allowing you the time you WILL NEED to engage in social listening throughout the show.

To help you work faster and smarter, here’s an outline of what you need for successful pre-show social media prep:

  • Content scheduling: Use platforms with pre-scheduling capabilities (such as  Gain, our own personal favorite, or Sprout Social) to help with preparing content. This tool will allow you to create content before the show AND schedule it to post it in real time. This will free up your time during the show and ticks one more thing off the list that you and your team don’t need to give a second thought to next week.
  • Go in with a plan: Determine your game plan for collecting post-worthy content. On top of sharing your own company's resources, do you plan to get in on the conversations about what is happening during the show? If you can have a teammate assigned to finding share worthy content, this will go a lot smoother! No matter the plan, make sure everyone is on the same page, that way, when the show starts , there will be clear expectations around what you need to walk away with and who is in charge. 
  • Know your Log-ins (and it never hurts to check twice!): Make sure every team member is logged into each of your social media accounts during the show or at least has access in case some shareable content pops up and they want to participate in real-time (without any hiccups!).


Sharing Live Social Media Content at Fresh Summit

Although pre-scheduled content is a major time-saver during Fresh Summit, it’s also important to participate in conversations happening throughout the show. This may sound overwhelming, especially if you don’t have previous experience in this area, but luckily, there are some pretty simple ways to achieve this feat:

  • Re-Share and retweet: There will be a number of people and brands already participating in the Fresh Summit conversation (e.g. @theCoreblog). The easiest way to join in is by re-sharing and retweeting worthwhile content. Additionally, the great thing about Twitter and Instagram Stories for this purpose in particular is that they allow you to post often without overwhelming your audience with notifications or clogging up their newsfeeds. Feel free to retweet and re-share anything (and everything) that is relevant using both of these tools!
  • Tag and Hashtag: Make sure that when creating posts, stories, tweets, etc., you are tagging and engaging with other exhibitors where relevant--and hopefully they’ll return the favor (social media etiquette 101)! It’s also important to use the Fresh Summit hashtag (#FreshSummit). This will allow your content to be visible to a larger audience because it will automatically populate whenever someone searches for the latest and greatest Fresh Summit content.


Invest in Social Media Advertising

While many of us in the produce industry have felt vulnerable about changes to our biggest show of the year, PMA has done a great job preparing us and creating marketplace pages that allow us to showcase our companies in the best way possible. These pages are a great opportunity to elevate our brands even further. Utilizing advertising to boost posts during an event like Fresh Summit, allows you to capture more eyes on the content you want buyers to see most.

We recommend that you consider advertising specifically on LinkedIn because of it’s in depth and business-specific targeting capabilities.  You can get as detailed as targeting a specific company, or keep the targeting more broad with keywords like “fresh produce” or “packaging and labeling” and even #FreshSummit, depending on who you’d like to attract and engage with on this network.

Executing a social media plan for such a large tradeshow can seem intimidating (especially with the virtual learning curve!) but armed with these tips and recommendations, your brand is positioned to win during the first ever, virtual Fresh Summit.  We look forward to seeing you there!

Have something to add? Leave us a comment below or reach out to us on Twitter @TheCoreBlog!

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