Sucessful virtual events lessons

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Top 7 lessons learned to make successful virtual events in 2021

Posted on 12/15/2020

Earlier last year we published an article called Top 3 quick wins we had in our virtual events. That was 7 months ago and this territory of virtual events was barely explored.

We’re happy that most of those lessons are still useful and we keep implementing them. So, now it’s the time to come up with more of the actions that we took throughout this very nontypical year of 2020 – especially those that promise to keep working in 2021.

1. Think about scale

Often, agencies and event profs are unable to develop their virtual events because they have processes that consume way too much time.

Bear in mind that organizing a virtual event for 500 to 1000 attendee is not much harder than one for 40 to 50.

We don’t want to say that it’s easy by any means. The punch line here is: the sooner you simplify your activities and optimize your budget to factor that can really attract people (mainly advertising and promotion), the sooner you can grow.

2. Start your storytelling with data.

UNECE Guide to Statistical Storytelling says that “A statistical story is one that doesn’t just recite data in words. It tells a story about the data.”

Having a really data-driven operation is giving up certain old-fashioned concepts. In communication, big numbers are a hook to any subject you want to introduce.

Having reliable data to relate with your main virtual event topics ignite rapport and makes your occasions relevant.

3. Use video

On several occasions, we have experienced exponential branding results when using videos to promote our own virtual events.

Having quality content and format presented in video might have been the main advance we applied in our communication strategy.

If you still lacked any incentives, know that using this type of content at the bottom of the funnel helps boost your sales.

4. Take risks

In 2020, we organized over 30 virtual events. The last one of them was our first InEvent Fest. It’s been so successful that we decided to keep organizing the festival and the 2021 edition is already being produced. It promises to be even bigger and more impactful.

We’ll continue to talk a lot about new technologies, media, management, business, marketing and it all together have helped the development of this booming market of virtual and hybrid events.

But this is only possible because we’ve been bold and decided to test new methodologies, hired a highly responsive and competent team and quickly analyzed results and applied lessons learned in the next cycles.

5. Bad registration pages are enemies of your virtual events

A tweak in the registration page saw our biweekly virtual events rise 90% in June. That’s how important the mix of copywriting, design, and usability techniques are to your virtual events.

There is no point in working with complex technologies and forgetting that, in the end, you want to connect with humans. Have you tested the overall experience of your virtual events registration pages? If they’re not attractive enough, have unnecessary links, are lacking information or don’t adhere to Google’s best practices regarding user experience, you’re just wasting time.

Attractive landing pages are at the very foundational stone of your promotion strategy. Every other aspect will seem to be useless if your landing page isn’t producing conversions.

6. Stimulate user-generated content

There’s always the day in the life of a marketing professional where they realize: all this work and all these studies just come to the conclusion that word of mouth is still the best possible marketing.

And in the digital era, word of mouth is the testimonial your attendees are going to send in the post-event forms, the successful cases you’ll clients will be proud to talk about and the proximity with your community.

Don’t forget we live in the age of unloyalty. So, retaining and keeping your community happy, even in the time between a virtual event and the next, can be even more important than attracting new audiences.

If you’re interested in knowing how to create and grow your community, our Online Communities 101 Guide can help you achieve your first quick wins. We also had the chance to talk to Social Media Consultant Liz Caruzo about Personalized Communities.

7. Influencer Marketing

You already know that content is king. But an influential person that is excited about delivering that content can make this saying even stronger. Imagine: you invite a keynote speaker that has a Ph.D. about a specific subject. However, this doesn’t necessarily fit in the profile of a communicator.

Now, if you have someone that is happy and proud about being invited to give a lecture in your virtual event, they’ll spread the news and bring their audiences. Influence is leadership and everyone likes to be conducted by true leaders.

In conclusion

This year, virtual events and hybrid events promise to be the hottest marketing channels for B2B and B2C.

Companies will have to address a proper budget to make these events happen in the most professional and impactful way. And you can be sure that big corporations will inject millions of dollars into this market.

Why should you care about the tactics and techniques of market giants? Because if you are one of them, you’ll be the one in charge of proving its ROI – which is absolutely possible if you are equipped with the right tools.

Also, because if you aren’t one of them, you can reverse engineer their thinking. The approach and the idea are important parts to analyze the state of this market.

Save these lessons so you can achieve similar results without burning your entire budget and spending thousands of hours on failed implementations.

Virtual Event Trends 2021

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