Are you creating value for your virtual sponsors?
Virtual and Hybrid events are the new norm. We can all agree that sponsors and exhibitors played a major role in the success of in-person events, but many organisers have struggled to provide the same level of exposure for their sponsors with the transition to Virtual and Hybrid Events.
Sponsorship is no longer just a branding opportunity; sponsors are your new event partners, and they are looking to you as an ongoing channel, the few days of annual exposure at your in-person event provided is no longer viable. Exhibitors are in a similar position and have pulled away from the underperforming virtual exhibit hall model favouring smaller virtual events sponsorship in specific interest segments.
Now is the time to find creative solutions to put your sponsors and exhibitors in front of your virtual audience more regularly, you’ll expand the digital experience of your event and create content that delivers more personalised value for delegates, partners, and exhibitors alike.
Are you ready to discover new ways to increase virtual exposure for your sponsors and exhibitors?
1. Virtual Session Sponsors
Each live stream, track or session, at your virtual and hybrid events is an opportunity to incorporate a session sponsor. Marketers have found that 91% of event organisers use virtual session sponsorship to generate revenue. When matching a sponsor to the session, make sure you keep in mind the content of that session, consider the relevance and connection between your session content and your sponsor. It’s a good idea to align your sponsorship packages with the relevance and anticipated exposure of each session(eg. mainstage sessions). Alignment helps ensure you are targeting the right delegates for each sponsors, and maximizing their exposure and opportunity to connect.
2. Create Multiple Touchpoints
An event creates connections, with a virtual event or hybrid event providing even more opportunity to create strategic connections. Keep in mind that your virtual or hybrid event is different to an in-person event, and that your advertising strategy needs to take this into consideration. Virtual and hybrid events can offer many opportunities to create more engaging touchpoints between your delegates, sponsors and exhibitors. Webcastcloud’s platform will allow you the create multiple touchpoints through horizontal and vertical advertising on your landing pages, live stream stages, each concurrent event session/track, within each video player, and much, much more.
3. Sponsors Ads During your Live Broadcast
You’ve grabbed your delegate’s attention, now let’s hear from a sponsor that made this fascinating content possible. Including sponsored ads, mid-live or simulated live broadcast is a great way to provide sponsors with meaningful exposure. So, take the time to have short ad breaks, giving you an opportunity to showcase your sponsors, and giving exhibitors the opportunity to network with delegates. Make sure that you lead up to these ad breaks, excite your delegates, thank your sponsors, and provide a warm introduction for your exhibitors.
4. Use Call-To-Actions
Including a Call-To-Action in your live, simulated live, and on-demand sessions, will help you generate engaging exposure for your sponsors and exhibitors. A CTA works to push your virtual delegates towards a desired action. Effective CTA’s are engaging, delivered clearly, and timed appropriately. We recommend delivering your CTA as a pop-up during your Sponsored Ad break, with a clear message and push (eg. click-through link) to your sponsors or exhibitors.
5. Take advantage of polling
The polling system provided by Webcastcloud will allow you to directly engage with delegates during live and on-demand sessions. Polls provide granular data around your delegates experiences, problems and insights. Polling can be designed to engage directly with your sponsors and exhibitors, and as a means of collecting specific data for their own business activities. You might use a poll to get your delegates thinking about a problem they have or product they need, priming them for a brief sponsor or exhibitor pitch.
6. Simplify Navigation for better usability at your at your Virtual or Hybrid event.
When selecting your User Interface (UI), use the KISS principle and keep it simple. 2020 brought about massive change. With a total pivot to virtual and hybrid events, we consistently heard that delegates networking with exhibitors became less impactful. It soon became clear that this issue was largely caused by a very clunky and confusing experience with the user interface. So you need to make it easy and clear for your delegate to navigate to the exhibitors and sponsors. Not all delegates are tech-savvy and for some, this might be their first virtual or hybrid event experience. Make navigation in your UI as intuitive as possible, and remember there’s no such thing as too obvious. You should include multiple clear pathways to connect directly with sponsors and exhibitors.
7. Launch your Expo Hall Pre Virtual or Hybrid Event
Your delegates are focused on consuming as much relevant content as possible within a limited time. In other words, delegates are time-poor during in-person, virtual and hybrid events. Delegates attending your virtual and hybrid event, are likely working from home and multitasking between live sessions.
Unlike in-person events that force delegates to disconnect from the office and stop working, the online convenience created by a virtual or hybrid event also means that delegates are be tempted to multi-task and keep working in the background. Use virtual or hybrid advantages to your benefit, set up a virtual pre-event expo hall. Then take your pre-event expo hall live well ahead of the event start time.
A pre-event virtual hall will provide your delegates with a space to network with each other, exhibitors and sponsors. Opening your Pre-event expo hall ahead of your event starting will allow you to use your pre-event hype to give maximum exposure to sponsors & exhibitors at a time when delegates are excited about your upcoming event. Once your virtual or hybrid event has finished, delegates are tired, mentally moving onto their next task. This post-event fatigue, mixed with busy schedules, can decrease the chances of delegates engaging with sponsors & exhibitors in real-time post-event.
8. Post virtual and hybrid event.
It’s crystal clear that post-event on-demand content is the gift that keeps on giving. Use your conference video content to keep engaging with your delegates and members year-round through a on-demand video content strategy.
An on-demand strategy allows sponsors & exhibitors ongoing exposure even after your virtual or hybrid event has concluded in real-time. This on-demand exposure can induce banner advertising, sponsor ad’s and Call-To-Actions. You could use this opportunity to show sponsors and exhibitors how your virtual or hybrid event will deliver ongoing value. Showcase how your virtual and hybrid events provide higher value returns on their investment.
For best practice select relevant & popular sections of video content that will be converted into 3 to 4 video pieces. This valuable video content will drive additional revenue and exposure through post-event marketing using webcastcloud’s pay-per-view platform to sell this select handful of videos to members & delegates that were unable to attend your virtual or hybrid event on the day. Webcastcloud’s platform allows you to create a post-event digital marketing campaign that will continue to promote your sponsors and monetize each video. Webcastcloud is uniquely positioned to provide you with an end-to-end solutions, from pre-event, all the way to post-event value creation.
For many exhibitors & sponsors this is a time of uncertainty, many are unfamiliar or new to the virtual and hybrid event model. Now more than ever it’s important that you understand how to effectively deliver a high level of exposure. Provide a level of exposure that is on-par or beyond exhibitor & sponsor expectations. You need to walk sponsors and exhibitors through how your virtual or hybrid event will drive meaningful exposure.
Hopefully these valuable insights assist you in delivering increased exhibitors & sponsors exposure at your next virtual event or hybrid event.
Each audience is unique, each event is specialised, and each sponsor & exhibitor is different. Make sure that you’re working with a virtual and hybrid event hosting platform. Ensure you have the right platform and strategy for maximizing the value returned at your next virtual or hybrid event.
Contact Webcastcloud today! Together we’ll ensure you’re hosting virtual and hybrid events that deliver lasting value to your delegates, sponsors & exhibitors.