Producing an online event presents its own particular challenges, so follow these top seven tips and you’ll be giving your event the best possible chance for success.
- Reach out through all channels. Don’t limit your invitations to a single channel as you might think that all you have to do is to post it on your social media presences and watch them all pile in through the virtual door. You have to leverage every single possible vector to your potential attendees over and above social media, such as sending emails, texting them, or even calling them… remember the phone? It was once a primary event marketing method and it can certainly become one again!
- Crystal clear vision. There is essentially very little point to holding an online event unless you have an absolutely crystal clear vision as to what your goals are that you want to achieve in the event presentation. Are you seeking to share a specific opportunity with the attendees, encourage them to join a network, or even just looking for bottom line sales? Make sure that you communicate to everyone involved exactly what the event is all about so that the attendees know exactly what they can expect.
- Fun, exciting & family friendly. Far too many online event presentations offer all the fun and excitement of a three day conference on observing drying paint. If your invites are dry as toast and just as thrilling, you’re going to be putting your potential attendees asleep even before your equally stultifying online event starts. In order to grab the attention of an online audience you need to promise them an event that will truly engage every aspect of their personalities, not just their intellect. Just keep it clean and family friendly!
- Give away an ebook or a Rolls. If you’re not giving something away through your invitations you’re missing out on really turbocharging your entire online event. No matter what your event is dealing with or what industry sector it’s in, you can always figure out something to provide to the attendees at no cost. It can be something relatively simple as an ebook download link or access to a “secret video” or you can go all the way to the maximum extreme and enter them all into a drawing for a new Rolls-Royce. Whatever it is, make sure that you focus your invitation strategy on the giveaway!
- Don’t be all things to all people. Your event will teach attendees how to get a promotion at their job, improve their self-esteem, drive a nicer car, get whiter teeth, be irresistible to the gender of their choice, and live to be 150 years old in perfect health. Congratulations, you’ve just overwhelmed your entire potential audience and lost them all in one fell swoop. You have to concentrate on one simple, readily communicable key factor that your online event is all about and then direct all your efforts to making it the best possible.
- Not an university level course. An online event is not like a five day symposium where you can provide the equivalent of an university level course on hydraulic slurry pump impeller engineering. You have to get to your point quickly and allow your audience to derive the maximum value in the shortest possible time. If your event is going to run over 30 minutes you’ve already way exceeded the attention span of the vast majority of your online attendees, so you’d be wise to keep it under 20 minutes at most.
- Stick around. Don’t be the online event producer equivalent of the individual who engages in passionate flagrante delicto then gets dressed and leaves without a word. Once your event is over you’ll be surprised at how many attendees still have questions or didn’t even share them during the event itself, preferring the less-crowded milieu of the post-event. You have to be available for at least a half hour or more after the end of the event to provide personal attention, assistance, and answer any remaining questions.
Happy (and successful) online event producing!