You’ve Navigated Virtual Outreach – What Now?
Well, here we are. Dress shirt on top, gym shorts and slippers on bottom. You just gave a rousing speech in your Zoom meeting, but you were on mute. Such is life in a virtual world, and we’ve all more-or-less gotten used to it.
Along with meetings (that should have been emails), events have gone online too. Brand events, concerts, apartment walk-throughs, company team-building, movie nights, and pretty much all the other events involving interaction are taking place through various platforms on the World Wide Web.
Virtual is the New Normal…and it’s Finally Normal
A “Livestream concert” sounds a lot less weird now than it did when we were in the throes of the first year of the pandemic. And if Post Malone can Livestream a Nirvana Tribute Concert from his home bar with nobody raising an eyebrow, brands can also utilize the virtual space to reach the masses.
Conferences, virtual events, and other consumer-targeted efforts can all now be performed through online platforms, and it can save you a boatload of marketing dollars. Holding a conference or brand outreach event online rather than flying out, paying for event flights, hotels, space, setup, props, lighting, and the other in-person expenses frees up the budget to allocate elsewhere.
So you’ve gotten the hang of online meetings and you’re successfully navigating consumer and industry outreach through online platforms. How do you continue to be successful? Check out some hot virtual tips below, or skip right to a conversation with the pros and contact us today!
Find the Right (Cyber) Space is More Important Than Ever
It seems like more virtual event solutions are popping up every day, each with its own set of quirks, technical issues, UX, and capabilities. Rather than getting swept up in the latest craze, it’s important to keep an eye on the big picture. Before you get into granular detail, it’s important to nail down which of the two basic approaches you’ll use to take your next big event virtual:
- Enterprise Solutions
Sometimes customization takes a backseat to configuration time and ease of use. This is where enterprise solutions come in. These “all-in-one,” “off-the-shelf” products manage pretty much everything for you … from multiple video sources and data feeds to things like event invites, responses, and content distribution. While less customizable and more limited in their capabilities, enterprise solutions can be a solid workhorse for anyone looking to hit the ground running. You may be familiar with some of the more popular players, like BigMarker, ON24, and INXPO. Each of these solutions offers unique features and benefits, all at different price points.
- Platform Solutions
If you don’t mind putting in the extra time for a fully customized experience, platform solutions are the move. Rather than giving you a mostly completed package with some customizable features, platform solutions integrate the legacy technologies your business already has in play. Organizing everything into a central dashboard that serves as your “mission control,” platform solutions are ideal for branded experiences that are fully customized and that can make the configuration time well worth it. Popular platform solutions include heysummit and Hopin, though more options are appearing every day.
Expand Your Virtual Event Strategy
There are plenty of ways to engage with consumers and industry audiences virtually, but it’s easy to fall into a routine with simple webinars. Here are a few additional ways you can connect with your audience online and shake things up:
Live Episodes – Streaming a live episode of something that’s normally pre-recorded, like a podcast recording, helps lift the curtain on your operation and connect you with your audience.
Interviews – If there’s a certain hot-button issue that your company is tackling, or a new direction on the horizon, having an industry expert appear virtually to share their views on the subject can help you appeal to a wider group.
Product Launches – Unveiling a new product or service? Do it live. Streaming the launch of a new product or service can increase engagement while providing several opportunities to make it more exciting than an in-person launch.
Get More Out Of Your Virtual Events
Virtual events have their benefits, but they need to be impactful to compete with the experience of in-person events. Curious about how to get the most out of your next event? A full-service agency partner like Plan B can help you jazz up your virtual events and go beyond the standard, humdrum presentations. We consider more than the technical execution of the event to how the brand experience will connect with your other activities, from content marketing and social media to CRM.
With our virtual event expertise and the power of a broad team of specialists all in one place, we can help give your next virtual event all the pizazz of an in-person one, taking care of the details like:
- Establishing goals and KPIs
- Identifying and implementing a virtual event technology solution
- Developing and deploying creative content, activities, and experiences that engage your audience where—and when—it matters most
- Employing CRM best practices that generate and nurture leads
- Maximizing the long-term ROI of your event by thinking about flexibility and scalability
Ready to fire up your virtual event strategy? Great. Give us a call. Or fire off an email. Heck, you can even slide into our DMs! We’re eager to help you get your (online) show on the road without ever backing out of the driveway. Contact the Plan B pros now!