For businesses that thrive on in-person events, the recent pandemic has left many scrambling for substitutes. No major conference or public gathering has been spared from cancellation.
This puts into focus a new reality for business owners—one that champions virtual connection and adaptability. Leaders who are able to shift their business model and continue providing value to clientele under present restrictions are the most likely to survive, if not thrive, in the months to come.
With that said, reimaging something like an in-person seminar or conference isn’t as simple as firing up your webcam. Good online events, after all, are the enemy of great online events.
Here are some logistics to consider as you work to translate in-person events into online webinars and courses.
Get Your Tech in Order
Watching your cash flow closely over the next 90 days will be crucial as a small business owner. This doesn’t mean you have to cut overhead expenses entirely. Rather, be smart about what does and does not make sense for your business to spend money on right now.
One area in particular where this is true is technology and equipment. If virtual events could potentially provide your business with a new stream of revenue, invest in the tools you’ll need to pull them off well.
This may include things like:
- A better internet connection
- A webinar hosting tool like Zoom, GoToWebinar, Livestorm, or On24
- Some quality lighting
- A portable microphone
Choose Your Setting Wisely
You might have to get creative backdrop-wise when sequestered at home. Test out multiple locations as needed, opting to keep the visuals simple and streamlined.
With a locale in mind, do a test run to see how lighting and sound hold up. You should know what to expect from a visual and tech standpoint before going live in front of potential viewers.
Your online event will need just as much promotion (if not more) than those hosted in person. Allocate those marketing hours accordingly to get the messaging ironed out sooner rather than later.
Push out communications on through your digital channels and encourage RSVPs ahead of time. This allows you to build out your email list and easily promote future events with highly tailored communications.
Change Out of Your WFH Uniform
Unlike conferences, webinars don’t have the luxury of distracting attendees with swag from vendors, catered lunches, and end-of-day networking happy hours. The content is front and center—as is the host.
To present your best, you have to look your best. Change out of those work-from-home jammies and dress to impress. It also wouldn’t hurt to do a test recording of your presentation beforehand so you can review and tweak to your heart’s content.
Record and Repurpose
One way virtual events add value to attendees is through video recordings. Entice potential leads to RSVP even if they can’t attend live with the promise of a recording to watch at a later date.
This video content can also be repurposed for landing pages and longer-form, downloadable content campaigns. It’s an investment of resources that keeps on giving if you know how to use it.