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How to host a Virtual Event for SMES

Hosting your first virtual event is the most ground-breaking undertaking you can do in your business. With virtual events becoming the norm, hosting one will increase your user engagement, build your brand, generate leads, and help you grow your small business.

On the surface, hosting an online event seems like a daunting task. But, some practice and an idea of what to expect will make the process much more straightforward.

Here are some tips and tricks to help you create a successful online event from scratch.

Clarify your goals. Like any other business strategy, you need to have clear, outlined goals for hosting a virtual event. Having your goals written down will keep you in check and ensure you don’t lose track of what you hope to achieve. Your goals could be anything from connecting with existing customers, generating potential leads, or establishing yourself as an authority in your field to boost conversions.

Understand your audience. While you already have an idea of what you hope to achieve with your virtual event, you also need to pay attention to the needs of your targeted audience. A good strategy is to focus on providing value, to make the virtual event mutually beneficial for everyone involved.

Choose a topic in your niche that offers interesting, engaging, interactive, and relevant content to your audience. Create the content with your audience persona in mind for value addition to come naturally. By providing your audience with valuable tips, you can across a brand that values your existing and potential customers.

Choose the format. Your virtual event can take many forms as the options are limitless. So you need to conduct the virtual event in a way that makes the most sense for your specific goals. It could be a webinar, online discussion panel, Q&A with an industry expert, interview, conference, etc.

The rule of the thumb is to choose a format that offers room for the audience to participate. The more interactive, the better your virtual event will perform. Then, you can experiment with other options as you host more virtual events before sticking to one.

Choose the platform. Look at the various pros and cons of your hosting platform before making a decision. Budgetary requirements, recording and survey capabilities, platform features, and the number of attendees allowed is a great place to start. There are plenty of platforms to choose from for your virtual event, such as Zoom, Google Hangouts, Google Meet, Livestorm, ClickMeeting, among others.

You can also do a test run before committing to any option to ensure that everyone works smoothly.

Produce the content. After you have chosen a topic, settled on a format, now is the time to start creating content.

The content should not only be informative, but it also needs to spark the interest of your audience. Part of keeping your audience glued in is to incorporate visual aid, such as pictures, videos, and infographics, into your presentation. Also, add interactive elements to increase attention and make the virtual event even more memorable and entertaining.

Related; How to create a Content Strategy that works

Think mobile. Chances are, most of your audience will log in to your virtual event with a mobile device. Hence, optimizing for a mobile experience is crucial to provide a seamless interaction on your virtual event.

Picking a platform with features that support mobile devices will ensure everyone has a good experience with your virtual event.

Monetize your event. When you host a virtual event, you might put a lot of money and effort in depending on how big the event is. You can choose to monetize your event to make it more valuable and get something in return. You can raise money through donation tickets or sponsorships as long as it fits with the theme of your virtual events.

Promote your event. There are plenty of ways to promote your virtual event to set it up for surefire success. From social media, email marketing campaigns, Facebook Ads, and sponsored tweets.

In addition to your organized marketing efforts, you can boost the buzz around your event by utilizing trending hashtags, involving influencers or trendsetters in your industry.

Follow up. After your virtual event is over, it is time to wrap it up and give it a sense of completion. You can send a post-event survey to get pointers on the aspects to improve in your next event. You can send a recap of the presentation and a link to your website for your online strategy.

With these virtual event tips, you can now create an incredible virtual event that will help you achieve the goals that you set.

Plus, it will improve your brand awareness and position you as an expert in your field, which is efficient for your business strategy.

The Author

Janet M.

Janet is a digital media specialist with 4+ years of experience in technical writing for the web hosting industry. She is also passionate about creative writing and storytelling. She combines her technical knowledge with her creativity to produce engaging content that informs and captivates readers across various platforms.

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