A young man planning a corporate event.

How to Increase Attendance at Virtual Events in 8 Simple Steps

Larry Norris Video

With the Covid-19 pandemic, we entered a new era of engaging with brands during hybrid and virtual events. Hence, it’s crucial to learn how to increase attendance at virtual events. Even as we sail through the pandemic, virtual events will remain an integral part of how we hold meetings. As many individuals and organizations continue to return to normalcy, events will continue to evolve after the pandemic.

Also, when registered attendees to an event are a no-show, this can derail an event. That is why a reasonable attendance rate is a top priority for event organizers and planners.

We have come up with an 8-step guide on how to increase attendance at meetings:

1. You Could Charge Caution Fees for a No-Show

A good number of event organizers charge the attendees who do not show up a no-show fee. The fee ensures that if the attendee does not show up, the company does not incur losses on the costs incurred in event planning. If you decide to use this option, then you need to inform the attendees from the get-go.

It’s paramount to let the attendees know why you are charging the nominal fee. Additionally, let them know that a refund will be made once the event is over. However, let the attendees know that the payment will not be refundable if they fail to attend the event.

2. Share Exclusive Behind-the-Scenes Information with Registered Attendees

We all love a run-down memory lane or a quick laugh. You can put together exciting footage from the previous virtual event or a joke you shared with one of the panelists. This reminder is guaranteed to elicit excitement and curiosity among your audience. Additionally, you can share short clips of the event preparation.

Use the videos and market the event to the best of your ability. Put together time-lapse videos, memes, and candid clips under 30 seconds. This step will work like a charm.

3. Target Your Audience from the Social Media

If you are waiting for the attendees to know about the event magically, you plan to fail. The competition for people’s time is steep – thus, you’ll need to use multiple strategies to get their attention. Make use of an organic social media posting schedule. Highlight your keynotes, sponsors, speakers, sessions, and all other aspects related to the event.In addition, keep in mind paid social media adverts. These are some of the essential methods to reach the target audience. Think about who is interested in your content, what websites the attendees visit, the industry they’re in, how they read their news, and the pages they’re likely to follow. Having a budget for social media advertising will introduce the event to new audiences.

4. Cross-List Your Event

If your event is open to the public and you’re interested in spreading its reach, you can list it on websites such as Facebook’s Event listings, Eventbrite, and other similar sites. This list will increase your reach if the event resonates with the topics they are looking for.

5. Encourage and Reward the Attendees with a Plus One

Think referral campaigns. If an attendee refers their friend to the event, they get a reward. Encourage the attendees to bring their like-minded friends, workmates, mentors, and mentees or people from their community. The prize can be in different forms, such as vouchers.

Let the attendees know of the reward or referral program. As soon as someone shares information about the event with someone else or brings a plus one, send them a reward to show your gratitude.

6. Use Email Marketing Campaigns

Plan your event email marketing campaign to the last detail. 

Sending the correct email, with the right content, at the right time is critical to keep the registered attendees interested as they wait for the event.

Tips on how to hack this:

  • Use exciting and relevant CTAs (Call To Action).
  • Keep sharing the influential speakers and session details at regulated intervals.
  • Ensure excellent readability of event information on tablets, desktops, and especially mobile phones.
  • Send interactive and exciting content that attendees can share with others.
  • Remind the attendees about participating in contests, discussions, and other exciting offers.
  • Make a regular analysis of your campaign to know the content getting the most attention, CTAs working best, and the most engaged attendees.

7. Optimize the Event Landing Page to Improve Attendee Experience

The first impression matters. Thus, the event’s landing page is where your potential event attendees will learn about the event details. Entice them with crisp event offerings and clear communication. We’re all tired of Zoom invites and lengthy agendas with complicated jargon. Why not simplify the value your event offers right from the start?

In an easy-to-understand formula, give as many details about the event. What’s the purpose and idea of the event, the attendees’ expectations from the different sessions, the problems that the event will address, who to reach for more details, etc.

8. Give Room for Pre-Event Q&A Session

Put yourself in your attendees’ shoes. Most probably, you would also want to know about the event before you invest in it. Give the attendees a chance to ask questions to the organizing team or their favorite speakers before the event.

Consider having a chatbot on the event website or a real-time Q&A session. A virtual event platform makes having a Q&A session pretty easy.

Parting Shot

Are you planning your virtual event? At Centric Events and Rentals, we offer digital solutions for showcasing your virtual event. Let us help you with your event planning and rentals today! Feel free to get in touch with us anytime!