Event marketers, we salute you.
Covid has hit the industry hard, making an already tough job even more challenging.
In fact, in the early months of the pandemic, 40% of event industry employees believed their companies might not make it through the year to come.
That’s why, with in-person events taking a back seat, virtual events have never been so vital to your marketing strategy — and your bottom line.
But virtual events come with their own challenges too.
Just like those in-person event pitfalls you’ve learned to avoid over the years, virtual events come with their own special set of fires that occasionally need putting out.
In this ultimate guide to what not to do in virtual events, we’ll save you precious time and revenue by sharing the most common errors, and some top tips on how to avoid them.
Unlike in-person events, you don’t have to worry about catering and seating charts — but you do need to think carefully about the number of attendees at your virtual event.
The number of people you cater for depends on the type of event you’re hosting. For example, a company kick-off meeting may be more intimate than a conference, which in turn might have fewer attendees than a webinar.
Get it wrong and your event can feel impersonal, uninspiring or (at worst) amateur.
Deciding how many attendees to invite isn’t an exact science, but here are a few things to think about:
With Goldcast’s virtual event platform, you can engage small and large audiences with integrated features such as chat rooms, polls, Q&A sessions, emoji reactions, and more.
With Goldcast, you can host intimate fireside chats or large scale summits and ensure high engagement levels at both.
To avoid any speed bumps during the live event, you need to be selective about which platform you choose — especially because this is usually where the majority of your virtual event budget will end up.
The aim is to ensure your event runs smoothly and your brand’s integrity is upheld.
Choose the wrong platform provider and you risk leaving your brand underrepresented, your customers unengaged and your insights… well, uninsightful.
To avoid choosing the wrong virtual event platform, here’s what to look out for:
Most virtual events aim for more attendees, leads and ultimately conversions — without them, your event could turn out to be a pretty lonely affair.
Marketing your virtual event on the wrong channel, emailing an unengaged list or failing to prepare far enough in advance can lead to fewer registrations, fewer attendees and a rather unhappy C-suite when they look at their ROI.
Here’s a quick checklist reminder on how to market your virtual event:
When in doubt, find a virtual event platform that offers unbeatable support and features.
Website and email sit comfortably in top spot when it comes to the most popular ways to boost event registration numbers. [Source: Markletic Event Research]
As a successful event marketer you can tell a great event from a mile off — they’re the ones where you feel a connection to the speaker and your fellow attendees.
In fact, 49% of marketers say audience engagement is the biggest contributing factor to having a successful event.
Without this connection, your audience has to work hard to stay engaged, focused and in the moment.
And if they have to do this, you’ve failed. 🙅
But, fear not — using a few simple and effective tools can prevent that ‘Left the Conference’ notification from appearing on your screen. #Awkward.
Why not try:
🔥 Check out how Smartling engaged their attendees and reached 42% live attendance with a Netflix-worthy virtual event.
We know you have a lot to say about how great your company is. But, honestly? Your audience isn't going to sit there and listen to it all.
These days, we’re all tired of staring at screens and given that we’re attending 3X more virtual events than before, it’s no wonder 88% of us have left an event early.
Here’s how to keep it short and sweet so your audience stays engaged until the end:
60-90 minutes is optimum for a round table discussion, but this varies between event types — be sure to research how long your sessions should be. [Source: Markletic Event Research]
Building a community helps your attendees — but it also helps your bottom line.
Your brand is the attendees’ reason for being there, so they’re likely to talk about it — and the more they discuss, the more they involve themselves (and others) in your brand story.
Failing to build a community means you’re missing the most organic opportunity to create a loyal customer base… you’ve been warned!
So, how do you develop a community through a virtual event? Let’s break it down:
For experienced event marketers, following up with attendees is the obvious path — but that doesn’t mean everyone does it.
The problem is, failing to follow up after an event limits your chances to improve future events, convert prospects to clients, and build strong relationships with potential customers.
Before you move on from your event, here’s how to finish it off in the right way:
Even for an event-planning pro, transitioning to virtual events in the middle of a global pandemic is a rough road.
But by avoiding these seven pitfalls, you’ll be well on your way to regaining that event marketing superhero status you’ve always held (with virtual events as your newest superpower).
If in doubt, remember these three words:
And when you’re ready to excel at all three, remember just one name: Goldcast ✨