How to position your virtual event to achieve maximum ROI
Virtual is the new Event.
And now more than ever, “positioning” events is crucial.
But what exactly is (Virtual) Event Positioning?
Before you even consider staging any event (physical or virtual), it’s imperative you ask yourself the following questions:
- Do I understand what motivates my audience?
- Can I provide value to my audience? My sponsors?
- Can I give them something unique at this time?
- Who, internally and externally (to my organisation), will present our content?
- What do I want my audience to think, feel, know, and do?
- Which metrics am I going to judge the event’s success by?
Overall, your answers will determine whether your event will be a success or a failure: i.e. whether people are going to turn up and, importantly, engage in the right numbers and in the ways you want.
Do I understand what motivates my audience/sponsors?
In order to add value, you first need to understand the needs and fears (motivators) of your target audience – and sponsors, if appropriate – so that you can sell the features/benefits and unique selling points (USPs) of your event to them.
You must also deliver your event in their preferred format (channel, platform, tone, frequency).
Can I provide value to my audience?
Are people going to derive value from your event? Are you going to fix their current problems and help them anticipate their future ones? Are you going to provide them with opportunities they can seize?
Until you can answer “yes” to these questions, your event’s positioning will need work.
Can I give them something unique at this time?
Which events have happened, are happening, and are due to happen which cover the topics you aim to to cover?
You need to strip out the market noise and differentiate yourself – to give something desirable that other events lack.
Who, internally and externally (regarding my organisation) will present our event and its content?
Who will present the virtual event, all the way from the perspectives of key notes (and similar live pieces) through to on-demand content?
Will you use external thought-leaders/guest speakers too? And what about 1-on-1 audiences: sessions with your Executive, Technical, Compliance, HR teams etc.?
Gather the best teams internally and externally that will sell your event most powerfully.
Consider your target personas’ motivators and preferred buying styles (e.g. probably less “jokey” delivery style for CxO; more technical for techies).
Who are they likely to like, trust, and buy into?
What do I want my audience to think, feel, know and do?
Understanding the physiological and psychological impact you wish to have on your audience will drive the composition, format, and direction of your presentation and content.
Which metrics am I going to judge the event’s success by?
Virtual Events are data rich. Thick with data.
These data includes attendee numbers, social habits and, crucially, how they engage with you and your content digitally.
Do you want to know who is reading what, for how long, and how they zip through it? Maybe how much it’s being shared internally with their organisation?
Decide upfront what you want to know, and this will help shape the format, layout, and content of your event.
“How do I position my virtual event?”
- Start with the metrics you wish to understand, then design and deliver your event so that you get the metrics you want.
- Know and anticipate the current and future motivators (benefits & fear drivers) of all your target personas – and sponsors if applicable.
- Know how you want your audience to think, feel, know, and do, so you know what to deliver, how it should be delivered, and who should deliver it.
- Study and emulate the successful formats (channel, platform, tone, and frequency) that underlie the decision-making and buying habits of your target audience.
- Know and anticipate the current & future competitive offerings in your space, so that your event uniquely adds value.
- Gather the best internal and external teams to sell your event most powerfully, in the context of your target personas’ motivators and behaviours.
A poorly-positioned event will attract few and give little value.
You will turn off and fail to impress your target audience. This means that not only will this event not work, future events and marketing efforts will be threatened.
On the flip side, a properly-positioned event will maximize attendance and engagement.
It will drive value, monetization and ROI – for both you and your sponsors.
It will ensure strong 365 engagement/LTV (lifetime value) potential. And, of course, new and existing customer growth.
Don’t wait until registration time to acid-test your wrong assumptions!
Positioning is one of the four core competencies of The Social Effect. Get in touch and we’ll help make sure your event is the biggest success it can be!
HEAD OF MARKETING
Pre event marketing is broken and Matt is on a mission to help you fix it. It’s his job to delve deep into every aspect of pre event marketing to help event marketers streamline & optimise their B2B event marketing.
HEAD OF MARKETING