Re-creating an excellent educational and knowledge sharing experience in a brand-new resilient format...
Online events are here to stay and it will be a long time before onsite events will have fully recovered from Covid-imposed restrictions. IATA estimated in July that air travel will not return to normal until 2024 and Bill Gates predicts a reduction of business travel of 50% post-Covid. Instead of looking at online as a temporary hurdle, organisers should play the long game and use this forced digitalisation as an opportunity to offer more value and futureproof their revenue streams.
Yet, many online events appear to be struggling to offer enough value to sponsors. Much of the focus is on brand recognition and moving an onsite expo experience to an online environment. There are many examples of skeuomorphism that give an eerie feeling of emptiness. Others use pictures or silhouettes of people that only serve as a depressing reminder of what the event is not. The expo more often than not struggles to be more than a list of logos that you need to click on to find information that you could have found on the company’s website as well. Also, online expos or marketplaces are often detached from the rest of the event and fail to attract significant traffic.
Instead of trying to hold a physical event online, we should use this new medium for its own strengths:
Clearly logo placement alone just doesn’t cut it. Organisers need to think hard about how they are going to meet the needs of their sponsors if they want to maintain support.
Fortunately, there are better ways to provide your sponsors with the value they seek. It is important for organisers to look at this from the perspective of the sponsor and realise that everything they do will need to be supported by providing sponsor the ability to generate leads.
Successful online event sponsorships packages will need to include the following building blocks: