Six Important Lessons for Modern Live Event Marketers
We know that the life of a live event marketer isn’t always easy. Here are a few lessons we’ve learned over the years to take the mystery out of live streaming and promotion, so at least the scaling part of the job can feel a little easier.
1. Live Is Not A Zero-Sum Game
Live streaming your event doesn’t take away from the in-person attendance. In fact, studies show that it helps increase year over year attendance. According to Digitell, 30% of people who tune into the live stream of an event will actually attend the event the following year. Eventbrite cited Coachella as an example of this phenomenon, explaining, “Large events like Coachella have seen this in action. Coachella sold out in 3 days in 2011, before they started live streaming their festival. In 2012, after live streaming the previous year’s festival through YouTube, the festival sold out in just three hours.” In short, if your goal is to sell more in-person tickets, live stream your next event to a large audience.
2. Understand Your Target Audience
When producing your virtual event, understand your target audience and create calls to action they find compelling if you want to drive engagement. This process is slightly different for B2B and B2C endeavors, so make sure you understand your goals before setting out to build an audience profile. Understanding your target audience can help you determine what kind of content to stream, and will help you be strategic when it comes time to employ distribution.
3. Engagement is your Key Metric
It all starts with engagement. That’s not to say that impressions aren’t valuable — just getting on peoples’ radar can provide value in the form of brand-awareness. However, conversion potential (and therefore the potential for ROI) is highest among people who have engaged with your live content. Once your event is over, knowing and being able to follow up with your engaged audience will help move your prospects through your funnel.
4. Create Strategies for Every Phase Of Your Live Stream
Your live event marketing strategy should involve more than just promotion. It’s definitely important to have a strong pre-event promotion strategy that incorporates your email, social, and paid channels, but distribution during the event and retargeting afterward will greatly increase your chances of conversion. Each phase of your event requires a different strategy with unique engagement opportunities and presented value. Determine who you are going after and expand that audience before your show using tracking pixels. Create different CTAs that are focused on registration, engagement during the event, and re-engagement once the event is over. During the event, make sure you have a strong distribution strategy in place either through social media channels or through audience development tools, and pay attention to your engagement rates so you can optimize in real-time. Afterwards, follow up with engaged viewers. And of course, test everything!
5. Always Keep Value In Mind
The content you provide through live video is valuable and those who engage will find that to be true. Don’t stop there though… it’s important to continue to provide value to your leads through additional offers once your event is over. I find that free trials work better than demos. Case studies provide additional information and value as well, but ultimately it will be important to provide additional offers within the case studies in order to bring people back to your product. Those important offers will drive additional conversion.
6. It’s Not Over Until They Convert
Part of driving ROI is making sure that you’re continuing to engage and offer value to potential customers after you’ve attracted their attention with your live stream. What better prospect do you have than those who engaged with your message during your live event? They have heard what you have to say. They have given you their time and attention. Now, go convert them by delivering additional content after your event! Through distribution and through social media (to some extent) you can capture your engaged audience, build a pool of interested viewers, and convert them to leads through retargeting.