As we all know, business has largely gone virtual. Regular staff meetings, client conversations, trade events and industry conferences have moved to virtual platforms. Project management software and door, frame and hardware distributor software have moved to the cloud and virtual customer events. For example, Software for Hardware holds regular Customer Council meetings as a Zoom virtual event.
For businesses working to expand and attract new prospects, virtual marketing events or meetings can be great opportunities but also difficult. So, given this new reality, what should you do to make virtual events most productive?
Success starts with a plan. As legendary coach John Wooden often said, “Failing to plan is planning to fail.” Spotme.com recommends you establish a timeline right at the start of planning. Virtual events do not take as much time to plan, versus an in-person event, so intense promotion in a short window becomes critical. Then focus on ease of registration, ease to attend, and ease of content presentation are all key aspects to a virtual event success.
During the event, believe it or not, you can continue to promote and market your company. For example, if you are holding an event to preview the release of a product, you can use branded items for references, actually show the product/service, and allow the audience to engage with the meeting. The Spotme.com article also argues that email marketing and social media can effectively grab attendees attention at the event. People don’t usually prefer receiving numerous emails pertaining to the same topic, but if your audience is interested enough, they will engage. Being persistent will prove that the event is something worth-while.
While you certainly lose the one-on-one personal experience and relationship development in virtual events, the upside is being able to interact with so many more customers and prospects. The more prepared you are for virtual events the more that both you and your audience will gain.
Lisa Oxman, Co-owner, Software for Hardware LLC, based in Atlanta, GA. You can reach Lisa at Lisa@softwareforhardware.com