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10 Virtual Trade Show Must Do’s for Success

Jim Cermak


Here are the Top 10 Must-Do’s for having a successful and engaging Virtual Trade Show!!

1-Know your audience

— What are they looking for that you can offer?

— What are they going through? Especially now!

— Set the right time of day – is the audience business or consumer? Local, regional, or global?

2-Set your strategy

— First – think about how you usually do trade shows. Or what your best trade shows brought. Make sure you try to work as many of these aspects into your virtual shows.

— Is one time live or are replays available?

— What do you want people to leave with?

— What do you want people to do? Call to Action!

3-Set goals

— What will equal success?

— Don’t just do something and say Yup! We had a virtual trade show! There’s got to be something measurable.

— If you’re ever investing time and money

4-Promote promote!

— Social media, email, banner ads, etc.

— Give incentives for people to attend

5-Get people to register for the event

— Whether free or if you charge, getting people to register allows you to set your expectations

— Plus once they register, they are more likely to show up

— IDEA – get their physical address and send them something in the mail ahead of time! Mail out an agenda and maybe a promo item. Do you have some of those sitting around?

6-Find a sponsor or two

— If you’re doing this by yourself, reach out to a vendor or partner and get them to sponsor your event.

— Great promotional opportunity for them, plus helps you do more

— They can sponsor your pre-event or post-event mailing

7-Get interactive

— As people join in, call out their names! We love hearing our name, and it lets us know this event is actually live!

— Not just be interactive, but encourage engagement! Give opportunities!

— If you are planning on using the chat feature, make sure you have a moderator monitoring the chat to bring up questions and talking points

— Call out people who ask questions or make good points. If your software allows, open up their mic for a quick discussion or bring them on screen with you.

— Run quizzes, games, and polls to get people involved

— Networking opportunities

8-Go through it completely with your team ahead of time

— Don’t have the first time you run through to be in front of your live audience

— Work through any tech troubles you may have

— Have people tell you if they are engaged or if they want to go do something else

— Are your slides or graphics easy to see and read? Fewer words per page, more pics

9-Know your tech!!

— What features are you planning on using? There are so many available today.

— If you will be having multiple speakers, know how to smoothly go from one person to another.

— Make it super simple for your attendees to register, log in, and interact – whatever you want them to do!

10-Other fun ideas

— Did your company usually sponsor after-hours networking events? You can still have one!

— Can even send out a special box with a bottle of wine or beer ahead of time for them to enjoy during the event!

— If it’s a longer all-day event, send out a boxed lunch to your attendees

— Send out some swag ahead of the event and have drawings for those who wear or display it during the event.

— If your event is going to be more than an hour or so, plan for breaks! The last thing you want is your audience feeling trapped.

— And make your breaks fun! Have live entertainment, run fun video clips or company videos, on-screen quizzes, trivia, giveaways, and more.

So there you go! My 10 Must-Dos for having a successful virtual trade show!

What are you doing? Let me know! Jim@tradeshowu.biz

About the author, Jim

Jim Cermak has over 25 years of marketing, consulting and training experience, and has planned and worked hundreds of Trade Shows. He gets a little overly excited about Trade Shows, and puts that passion into helping companies get better results!

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