Virtual conferences were successful during the COVID-19 pandemic and are likely to remain a popular format in the future. Trends show that video and web conferencing will account for more than 80% of all internet traffic this year – and the global acceleration to virtual events is here to stay.
Capitalize on virtual event engagement by using these tips:
1. Scout the UX and UI
It’s important to explore the user interface and virtual support for an event when developing your digital booth. Before you decide to exhibit, request a demo of the conference platform and event training materials or how-to guides they offer. Look for live chat features, booth customization, and other opportunities for interacting with attendees during and after the event.
2. Keep the Design Simple
Virtual exhibitor content should be short, simple and to the point. Focus on the top 3-5 most compelling aspects of your business. Use graphics, videos, and other visuals to tell your story in 10 seconds or less. Companies like Fiverr and 99Designs can help you connect with freelance graphic artists while other platforms like Canva offer pre-designed templates that are easy to edit. Remember when designing for digital – less is more.
3. Use Fun Outreach Strategies
Virtual conferences allow you to ditch the freebie swag in exchange for more intentional networking. In a digital Expo Hall, qualified leads are more likely to seek you out, but it’s still important to focus on ways to differentiate your brand. Try hosting a live event poll or social media contest with conference hashtags to amplify your content. Consider livestreaming entertainment at your booth with a mini-concert, celebrity cameo, or real-time product demo.
4. Big Value Brings Big Buzz
Just like in-person events, when people see a valuable prize giveaway, they want to win. Tech items like VR headsets, an Apple watch, or wireless headphones are popular giveaways. To create buzz, host a simple guessing game or True/False contest at your booth. You can even offer a digital business card drop to get contact information. Then, build anticipation by holding a virtual prize drawing and announcing the winner at the end of the event.
5. Rethink Your ROI
Because virtual events are new for everyone, it’s important to start with a set of realistic goals. For ROI calculations, eliminate in-person costs like swag, hotels and travel. Develop a baseline for your digital channels including key webpage traffic, social media likes and shares, email open and click rates, and customer acquisitions. Compare data from before, during, and after the event to track the most successful elements of your conference experience. Establishing new data benchmarks will help you improve your virtual engagement from one event to the next.
The Texas Medical Association will host its annual TexMed conference virtually, this May. The two-day event is free for more than 55,000 Texas physicians and their staff and will feature hundreds of free continuing medical education programs.
Sign-up to exhibit or sponsor at texmed.org/Exhibit. To explore the conference, visit texmed.org/TexMed. For more tips and information on how to reach Texas physicians, visit texmed.org/Marketing.