Tools That Every Virtual Event Organizer Should Be Utilizing
Virtual event technology is rapidly getting better. And with better technology come more efficient and cutting-edge tools. But when things move so quickly, it can seem difficult to keep up, especially if you’re an event organizer or marketer. At the same time, these tools could prove to be an integral part of your event marketing mix.
Hosting an event? Then you need a website. It has to include information about the event, the agenda, names, and details of the speakers, updates, and announcements- everything a visitor would need to know. Not only should it be informative, but it must also build engagement with your visitors.
For instance, you could have two different timings for your event and you could ask your visitors to register for one. You could also ask them to contribute ideas for your event hashtag, play pre-event games whose winners will be announced at the event, and so on.
Also make sure that your website is attractive, has a consistent theme that goes with your brand and your event colors, is easy to navigate, loads quickly, and is mobile-optimized. You should also ensure that registration happens seamlessly.
Pre-event engagement tools
Earlier we discussed pre-event games. You can use a good virtual event platform to design these games or choose from existing ones. These can help build excitement before the event and boost engagement before, during, and after the event too.
You don’t necessarily need games alone. You can also host short polls and encourage visitors to answer. All the information from the polls can be used as data at a later stage. That is how you can use polls and games to keep your audience engaged even after the event and boost your RoI.
Social media challenges
To run a successful challenge or contest on social media, you need a good event hashtag and a few good posts that have the potential to go viral. Through these, you can promote your event and generate buzz and engagement. Winners of your challenge can be rewarded with cool goodies and prizes at your event. This will also encourage more attendance for your event.
In fact, there is a lot you can do on social media. You can also tag attendees, reward the ones who share the best experiences about the event, and much more.
We discussed creating a website for the event earlier and while that may be great for laptop and desktop users, an event app is likely to provide an even better experience, especially to mobile users. Remember the same instructions while creating your app and ensure that it is secure.
To increase registration on the app and increase its usage, you could have special app-only deals and discounts too. You could also partner with mobile gaming companies to host special app-only tournaments, daily challenges, contests, and so on. Your app has a higher likelihood of being more engaging to your visitors.
As an event organizer, you must look into the tracking tools available at your disposal because these will enable you to prepare better for your post-event communication and your next events.
In 2022, The Ultimate Guide to Effective Event Branding
In 2022, marketing channels and platforms have grown multifold and this has added to the paradox of choice as far as event branding is concerned. Should you have a social only strategy or should you invest heavily in offline branding too? The conundrum is sometimes too difficult to get out of.
To make matters more sensitive, the relationship between your branding strategy and customer loyalty is directly proportional. Look at brands like Apple and Nike. Their customer base is massive, and every customer is a brand ambassador.
But is event branding the same as corporate branding?
Essentially, they are two different things but produce the same results for the company. If your event is well-promoted and talks to your audience about your brand, then it can help enhance your brand awareness, customer loyalty, and revenue.
Here are a few steps that you can include in your next event branding campaign.
Figure Out The Purpose Of Your Event
Every activity begins with a ‘why’. Quite often, marketers who get this right end up having successful campaigns. The ‘why’ puts the rest of your steps in place and forms the foundation for your entire strategy.
Are you looking to showcase your product line? Or this is an event for employees to feel one with your business? Why do you want to have this particular event?
Another aspect you might want to look into here is your target audience. Is it customers or employees, or both? That will make your event brand positioning tighter too. More on that in the next section.
Define Your Value Proposition
Every event is different. And it seeks to deliver some value to its attendees. So, once you have earmarked a solid objective, you must articulate your event’s value proposition. Here are a few things to consider.
- Who is your audience?
- What need of your audience is your virtual event going to address?
- What is your event?
- What does your event entail?
- What core benefits does your event provide to your audience?
Make Your Brand Tangible
When you think of a big event like the Oscars, you immediately picture the image of a knight and his sword. If your event is going to be recurring, you might want to invest in a good name, logo, slogan, certain colors, a particular font, etc for it.
You could make an entire branding exercise out of it by running a contest to help you design a logo for your event. This could go under the pre-event promotional campaign. What a simple but effective virtual event idea!
Put Everything Into Action
The final step is executing your strategy. Once you have your ‘brand’ in place, the first step is to create an event-specific website with your brand splashed all over it. You could also have a mobile app to reach mobile users.
While the website is part of your pre-event legwork, your branding efforts should run into your final event as well. So, think of how you could display your brand at the event. If you are using a virtual event platform like Virtex, then you have umpteen ways to customize your virtual venue. Choose your colors and fonts everywhere- from your banners to your stage, and even registration passes!
One of the biggest virtual event trends for 2022 will be the usage of social media for event branding. From dance challenges to storytelling, businesses are doing everything exciting to capture audience attention.
Emerging trends shaping the future of event technology
Now that physical and in-person events are making a comeback, one might wonder if it is the beginning of the end of virtual events. However, the world isn’t ready yet. In-person events might not be able to return to what they used to be. However, on the bright side, this opens up a whole new territory where event planners and marketers can make the best possible use of event technology and virtual event ideas to still attain their goals.
So, let’s take a look at what 2022 and beyond have in store for the virtual event world.
Emerging trends shaping the future of event technology
1. Check-ins are going contactless
In a future that does not involve queues at events, attendees can perform a series of actions on the event website before they arrive at the event. Depending on these actions, attendees can either be granted or declined access to the event.
However, if a queue is inevitable, then virtual queues can ensure that not too many people assemble in one place.
2. Temperature guns too are going contactless
Yes, these guns are already contactless. However, things are leveling up now. State-of-the-art temperature check devices have the capability to record temperatures using infra-red technology, approve or deny access, have hand sanitizers and PPE kits handy, and even serve as an event guide.
3. ID verification is easier now than ever
For in-person events, certain requirements like being vaccinated or obtaining a negative COVID test are mandatory. But event planners can have a daunting task at hand if they are to implement these requirements.
4. Robot technology is finding its way
Hybrid event planners are now receiving smart event assistants. Be it AI-powered chatbots for the virtual audience or robots are in-person events, these AI-powered machines are making life much easier for event managers. They help attendees check in, find information, bathrooms, meal times, and even deliver food!
5. In-person and virtual attendees are networking now
Hybrid events are more than just livecast streaming of the in-person event. Event technology is evolving to include new networking opportunities between in-person and virtual attendees. While this may seem odd at first, it is working! Developments like a mobile app for the event or networking rooms for the attendees are turning this kind of networking into a reality. Some event technology is sophisticated enough to enable remote attendees to control streaming robots thereby letting them choose which section of the venue or the event they want to watch.
6. Smaller events are becoming more popular
The in-person element of hybrid events is becoming smaller and more intimate now. As such, this just might be one of the biggest virtual event trends for 2022. Physical events will be capped and largely open to senior management and other VIPs. On the other hand, the virtual element will continue to focus on reach while ensuring that the audience remains engaged.
7. Content also is becoming contactless
Physical events no longer need to waste paper to print event-related and other branding/marketing content on brochures, booklets, and so on. All the content can be made available online which can be accessed by scanning a QR code. This will also provide equal amounts of information to both physical and virtual attendees and since it will be stored on the cloud, it will always be available.
Whether the world goes back to normalcy any time soon or not, these developments will dominate the event space for some time.