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How to Shift From Physical to Virtual Events and Generate Leads

Are you thinking of canceling travel arrangements for industry conferences? If so, then you’re not alone. Recently, many trade shows converted their onsite plans into virtual events.  Facebook canceled its F8 software developer conference. Google switched to a virtual event for Google Cloud Next 2020.

Due to the coronavirus, people are scrapping travel ideas and signing up for online sessions. Instead of a crowded expo floor, they will be watching live product demos from their homes or offices.

Don’t dump your plans – rather, showcase your products and story with engaging virtual events. With the right approach, you can still generate great results from virtual events – here are some tips to help you optimize your event.

Create Online Events That Generate Leads: You head to a conference for many reasons, but your main motive is always to gather leads.

These are few Must-haves strategies for your virtual event to generate leads:

  • Compelling messages and a unique story
  • Goals to guide your event
  • Professional video design and production
  • A format emphasizing customer experience

You will always think of getting the best ROI out of your event, you know who your potential customers are and what they are looking for. Focus towards tactics that works best for your virtual events. Forget stagnant PowerPoint presentations and drop the stale pre-recorded speeches from your Leader.

Instead, look to deliver a powerful experience to your online audience.

Virtual Events the only option in COVID: Virtual or online events aren’t new, but converting a big conference into an online event, within days is fairly new. Many industry events had a backup plan ready to put into action – for example, OCP turned its Global Summit into a virtual event. Participants took part in one-on-one sessions and many more engaging activities from anywhere in the world.

The Geneva International Motor Show canceled its Switzerland show. Instead, they offered pre-recorded and live-stream press conferences. Where attendees viewed the latest debuts at their convenience.

IBM’s Think conference also got digital this year. The company hosted its activities with virtual events. It includes live-streaming content and interactive sessions.

These are only a handful of conferences that transform them digitally – but where does that leave companies that count on trade shows, summits, and conferences?

Now’s the time to plan for your own immersive online experience.

Virtual Event Planning: Moving to an online experience means adding new benefits, and even more value. To do that, you’re going need to use technology to pull your audience in, then, deliver an experience that makes your potential clients thrilled to be taking part.

Event marketing is all about putting yourself in the shoes of your customers – they were pumped to hit the road and see live product demonstrations, and many had put together lists of questions to ask during your Q&A sessions.

Virtual Event Ideas: Already your audience accesses webinars and spends a good amount of time online, so switching to a virtual event isn’t a big jump. Still some organizations have developed unique ways to increase the number of audiance and enhance engagement – let’s take a look at how industry leaders have adopted to online events that captivate a global audience.

Industry conferences also incorporate interactive multi-session activities with webinars and pre-recorded videos. For best results, focus on an audience that’s already shown an interest in your products and services. Think about what they need from you to take the next step, then provide that in a virtual event format.

Some combine local events with online offerings – for example, a participation party puts your virtual event onscreen in conference rooms across the country. That gives attendees the freedom to choose their location without gathering at a large event.

Top virtual event ideas include:

  • Pre-recorded videos – Give leads access to your videos on demand. Create an experience that combines brand elements and clear language with a captivating video presentation.
  • Other fantastic options include “choose your path” activities and team workshops, or you could share solution demonstrations while answering questions from your online audience.
  • Virtual event panels and forums – Live-stream from your New York Office or your San Francisco home. Hosting an online group is a great way to engage your audience with a live Q&A session.
  • Live-streaming – Get buy-in for digital events with a bit of FOMO. Remote viewers won’t want to miss out on asking questions in this community format.
  • Animated education content – Look to produce 2D and 3D content to reduce the production costs found in traditional video. Walk attendees through a product demo or setup process with ease.​

With a great strategy, you can turn any onsite exhibit into a virtual event.

Virtual Conferences: You may already offer online webinars or tutorials, but adding virtual events requires a little more planning. From accessibility to remote attendance monitoring, it’s important to
visualize each step.

Attendees flock to events to catch the latest innovations and network with industry leaders. Replicating that experience online isn’t easy, but brands that get it right can attract big audiences, generate interest, and increase brand visibility.

Use these tips to motivate your audience to take action.

  • Develop a virtual event marketing strategy that aligns with your goals
  • Engage virtual attendees using high-quality videos, animation, and graphics
  • Create a clear and compelling story and video script to keep attendees tuned in
  • Choose digital technology tools and formats that convey your message

Think of Virtual Events Before a Cancellation: Think of Virtual Events Before a Cancellation: Take measures before it’s too late- Plan for a Virtual Event before your next event gets cancelled- instead put together video assets now. Drop the travel expenses and live-stream a panel right from your office. Virtual events give your audience the flexibility to experience your brand and products from anywhere.