Tools for Effectively Promoting a Virtual Event
Now more than ever, the ability to produce and promote virtual events has become so important for businesses as they shift their traditional, in-person events to virtual experiences amidst COVID-19 and the need for social distancing. For some, these have always been virtual events such as webinars and workshops. For others, this is a whole new year of trying to transition what would have been large, face-to-face gatherings to now virtual experiences. No matter the type of virtual event your business or organization is trying to produce, the following tips will help you create a memorable and well-attended event that will elevate your brand. Take a look!
Create a unique brand for your virtual event.
Begin by creating a unique brand for your virtual event. If typically this would have been an in-person event that has now had to transition to a virtual component this year, it’s even more important to have the new branding reflect the change. Consider adjusting the event logo or tagline to make it unique to this year and separate this event from your other branding. But don’t go too far off the rails. Whatever unique brand you create, you want it to still reflect your overarching brand for your business so people are aware of the connection.
Make the “virtual” component an integral part of your messaging.
Next, you want to closely consider your core messaging. This should make its way into every part of your advertising and marketing of the event. Since the virtual component of the event may be different than what past attendees are used to, be sure to clearly communicate how and why your event is going virtual. What does this change as far as cost, timing, registration, and agenda? Find opportunities to communicate this in your messaging. Which brings us to the following…
Communicate the benefits to attendees.
Virtual events can provide unique challenges, but also unique benefits. Be sure you have your promotions focus on what unique benefits your virtual event will provide to attendees. The virtual nature may allow more people to attend who couldn’t have otherwise. You can also promote that the content will be made available via recording after the event (if this is something you plan to do). Also, virtual event price points are typically lower than in-person events because they don’t cost as much to produce. Be sure to advertise all of this to potential participants!
Utilize a custom website for your event.
You may want to create a custom website or landing page for your virtual event. This will allow for you to showcase the unique branding we discussed above. Additionally, this makes it clear and easy for people to find the information related to the event and to register. Finally, it will help with your promotions as you only need to point people to one URL rather than instructing them to your business’s URL and them needing to find where to go to get to the event information.
Harness the power of social media and social media influencers.
Next comes the power of social media. For virtual events, digital and social media advertising is highly effective because that is where you’re going to hit the people most likely to attend a virtual event. Beyond organic and sponsored content, also consider engaging social media influencers – those who have cultivated a large audience of people likely to fit the description of your ideal attendees – and form a paid partnership with them. They can greatly increase the reach of your messaging and help promote your event from a whole new angle.
Keep running promotions up to and through the day of your event.
And unlike promotions for traditional, in-person events, virtual events have the benefit of people being able to register right up to the last minute – and even after the event if a recording will be made available. For this reason, plan to keep your promotions running strong up to and through the day your virtual event takes place. You should switch your messaging to reflect “There’s still time!” or “Last chance!” or “Get the recording now!” Be sure to also follow-up with all attendees after the conclusion of your event to ask for their feedback, share the event recording, and thank them for attending. This is one more marketing touch point that can help grow loyal customers in the future.
Are you planning a virtual event? What challenges or uncertainties are you facing as it relates to effectively promoting the event? Ask your questions and join in the conversation in the comments below.