In the statistics by Freeman, it was found that stakeholders and 48% of CEOs are more involved in virtual events as a potential marketing strategy. The past year has been testimony to this phenomenon. Several big names of the corporate world are jumping on the bandwagon and going completely digital with their events and marketing strategies. Hence, it is the best time to start a virtual event planning business during this pandemic. So, next is the question, how to start a virtual planning business during this pandemic?
Following is a list of steps that you need to do when getting started with a virtual event planning business during this pandemic.
1. Get Done With Registration and Other Legal Formalities
Legal decisions are part and parcel of the business world, so there is no way you can avoid any legalities, regardless of the pandemic.
When starting a virtual event planning business during this pandemic, the first thing to do when starting a virtual event planning business is to choose whether you want to be an LLC, S-Corp or C-Corp. These three options are the most common amongst small businesses, as they provide small business owners with tax benefits and protection of personal assets.
2. Estimate The Investment Required
Even if you start with a virtual event planning business during this pandemic, that does not mean that you don’t need any investment. While you might save up on the rent of the office space, there are tons of things that would require investment and attention. You need to invest in requirement like:
- Cost Of Setting Up The Business
- Lawyer Fees
- Website Builders
- Web Designing
- Domain Name
- Email Hosting
- Server Hosting
- Small Business Insurance
- Permit And License Fee
- Design Programs And Softwares
- Email Marketing Tools
- It Support
- Accounting And Invoicing Software
- CRM Tools
- Project Management Softwares,
- Social Media Management Tools
- Campaigns and Promotion
- Online Data Storage
- Google Ads
As a virtual event planning business during the pandemic, it is mostly running in online mode, software and programs that let you conduct events smoothly, helps in tracking analytics and promoting your business to educate the audience about your business. However, there are exceptions like offline or hybrid events, which require software for engagement tracking and smooth user experience as much as its complete online mode counterpart.
3. Learn About The Important Tools
Making a user-friendly channel is the primary responsibility of any virtual event business. No matter how good the content is, if the user doesn't find a smooth experience, they will not come back in the future. Meaningful interactions and seamless experience are the cornerstones of a successful virtual event planning business. You should ensure that you offer features like live polls, Q&A, chat and screen sharing on the medium you decide. And with the advanced technology and tools, you can easily offer that to your audience.
If you are starting a virtual event planning business during this pandemic, consider learning the basics of CRM tools such as Pigeon, Hubspot, and Salesforce. Event management software and the system is yet another realm you want to dive into. With the basic knowledge, you would render the audience, organisers and members with a personalised and seamless experience. Social media management tools that help you keep track of engagement would also ensure accurate evaluation and improvement in the future.
4. Define Your Target Audience
In the event business, there are two kinds of markets - Corporate and Social. Corporate events generally consist of trade shows, meetings, networking, informal and team meetings. Social events, on the other hand, include birthday parties, baby showers, and anniversaries. So, the first thing you should ponder while planning to start a virtual event planning business during this pandemic is whether you want to cater to corporate clients or private clients. This distinction is also known as B2B and B2C, respectively.
If you feel comfortable interacting with private clients, going ahead with the B2C model would best suit your skills. And if you think that you are professional enough to convince and work with corporate clients, you can see it as a green signal for a B2B event business. Presently, corporate firms are booming with opportunities, as most big firms like Microsoft, Salesforce, and DocuSign invest in digital events. In either case, it is totally up to you who you want to work with.
5. Promote Your Business And Events
Marketing activities are the crux of any event that desires a huge audience and engagement. So, virtual event planners in business during this pandemic would be a good idea to ditch conventional marketing activities and experiment with something unique. Try to be active on your social media handles and develop the habit of being consistent. Once you start getting more contracts, you can use them on social media handles to promote yourself. You can also share these reviews and snaps of the event on LinkedIn, where the chances of getting corporate clients and connecting with decision-makers of big firms are also greater. You can also ask for referrals from your clients and spread the word through your friends and family.
While marketing a business can be done throughout the year, however, for event planners, the biggest perk of being in this business is leveraging each event they host. Sending newsletters, flyers or sharing short videos to create hype are the most common promotion strategies. The greater the publicity and exposure to the event, the greater the fame for the event business.
The pandemic has pushed organisations to resort to online event management, and you can see the influence of this strategy in small and large businesses alike. While the pandemic has been a curse to many companies, it has been a blessing to a few, including the virtual event planning businesses. So, we hope this blessing with our guide on starting a virtual event planning business during this pandemic would help you create quickly.
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Q. What is a hybrid event?
Ans. A hybrid event is a mixture of live and virtual events where the audience can interact virtually and virtually.
Q. What are some good business practices that every event organising firm should have?
Ans. Every event organising firm should have some good practices, especially during the pandemic are strong policies around rescheduling, refunds, and robust customer service.
Q. What are the different kinds of content format for an event?
Ans. The content format of an event can be a single-person hosted or like a tradeshow or workshop. An event can also be a Q & A show, where the live audience gets to interact with the panel or a single host.
Q. How to host a virtual conference?
Ans. When hosting a virtual conference, the first thing to ensure is that there is no chance for technical failures, or even if there is the slightest possibility, a backup plan is in place. Also, try to follow a theme and have a structured format for the conference. You can also choose to add some entertainment to make the event light-hearted is also a good strategy.
Q. How do virtual event planning businesses earn money?
Ans. Virtual event planning businesses earn money by selling tickets of their events (premium tickets), providing sponsorship opportunities, selling ad spaces on the website, selling merchandise and other event items, and selling on-demand content.