In just one year, we have seen some of the most drastic changes in our life. And one of these changes in the way we communicate. Everything has gone digital. And this includes events also. Events are necessary for many people, especially for marketers. Since events are one of the easiest ways to promote anything, one can sponsor virtual events. Or can host an event for marketing. So lot’s marketers always eye for marketing opportunities in an event.
Before the pandemic, no one had even the faintest idea that virtual events will soon become mainstream. And this is what happened when all the events either got cancelled or postponed for an indefinite period. As a result, virtual events shot to popularity overnight. But before we move further, let’s have a look at the origin story of virtual events.
Virtual events – a humble beginning
Virtual events are also known as digital or online events. These are those events that take place in virtual or digital spaces. The audience in these events is connected virtually from different locations. As a result, this convenience worked in favour of events during the pandemic. And is the influential factor in the growth of virtual events.
Virtual events are the successor of video calls that first appeared in the 90s. So with time, we saw massive improvements in virtual event technology. And today, you can convert any physical event into a virtual event. Not only this, but you can also host a virtual event that can last for several days.
Marketers and virtual events
Apart from event organisers, many people have benefited from virtual events. It includes the marketers. And this is because virtual events like their physical counterparts offer tons of marketing opportunities. For instance, you can use a banner to direct attendees to your website. Also, you can sponsor an online session or place your exhibition booth in the event for promoting your product/brand.
Since the beginning of this pandemic, social gathering has been affected significantly. And it was the virtual events that helped the marketers to continue their marketing campaigns. Let’s see how virtual events are impacting marketing.
Impact of virtual events in marketing
A broader reach
Virtual events have made events much more accessible. And have successfully eliminated geographical barriers, financial and time constraints. It means the attendees don’t have to worry about the cost and time required for travelling to the event venue. And those with the busiest schedule can also attend the event. Also, anyone from any part of the world can visit your event.
Another way virtual events are changing marketing is the communication between the audience and the brand. People in the virtual event can directly interact with brand representatives. They can openly chat or exchange their contact details. Also, many virtual event platforms provide tools with a focus on promoting networking. It has made communication faster, easier and more convenient. So marketers can effortlessly connect with the existing and potential customers.
Diversifying the portfolio
Brands or marketers can streamline the promotion of their brand by focusing on specifics. It means they can separately promote the various products and services offered by a brand. For instance, in a virtual event, a brand can individually promote their new products, existing line-up and services. It makes marketing easier to comprehend. With the bifurcation of products, a brand can target various audiences in a single event.
Introducing a product
When it comes to showcasing a new product, brands and marketers used multiple channels for promotion. However, it is not an easy task to coordinate promotion with several marketing channels. But with online events, you can launch a new product and promote it in real-time.
Many virtual event platforms integrate social media and chatting platforms. And marketers can use this feature to organise their marketing strategy for a wider reach.
In a virtual event, a brand or marketer has a high level of autonomy over the look of a virtual booth. And nowadays, many event organisers and platform providers are working more proactively to allow the exhibitors to tailor their booth. And this is pretty evident by the fact that they offer features like DIY Booth.
This feature allows an exhibitor to choose the various colours and design options for their booth. Also, they use logos, photos, videos and pdf files in their booth. It allows the brand to customise its booth that can make the attendees recall the brand.
Keeping a tab on things
Virtual events heavily rely on technology. It also means that they offer tech-based solutions to every challenge. And one such challenge is tracking the data about the event. Since virtual events are digital, you can automatically collect data. It includes the number of registrations, login and attendees available in the event in real-time. Also, you can monitor the activities of individual attendees. And can see the number of attendees on the exhibitor booth or online session. It helps in getting accurate results about the performance of the event.
In online events, the data is available at your fingertips. It means you see and analyse the metrics and ROI to determine the performance of the event. And can use this data to form strategies for the next event. You can evaluate what worked at your event and whatnot. After that, you can use these results to improvise your plan and approach. And massively increase the effectiveness in future events.
Out of all things that physical events lack is 2-way communication or interaction. And this deficiency can affect negatively in many ways. However, with virtual events, you can promote 2-way interaction. But the question is, how does it work? This feature enables the attendees to interact with the speaker during a live session. An attendee can ask a question during the Q&A session. And the relevance and importance of this question will be checked by the moderator. If it passes, then it will be sent to the speaker. And then, the speaker can answer the question through a video call with the attendee.
In these ways, virtual events are changing the marketing scenario in 2021. And with the growing demand for Virtual and hybrid events, in future, we may see new trends. Some of these are real-time translation, micro virtual events and virtual communities.