Before 2020, online events were not that common. Some companies had started having virtual meetings to cut the cost of travel but in the main, most events were still face-to-face. Online events are now huge, but getting them right can still be a big challenge. Here is the ultimate checklist for putting on a successful online B2B event.
Decisions for the First Meeting
From the first meeting you have, you should be making some important decisions about the event. Some decisions may be different from those you have had to make for any face-to-face events you have organized. You want this first meeting to take place as early as possible, ideally 5-6 months before the event.
- Decide on the team you need around you that will help organize the event.
- You should already know the budget you will have for the event. This can help you calculate the size and scale.
- Establish a target audience for the event.
- Set your goals for the event and specify how you think they can be achieved.
- Start getting quotes from vendors. If you are on a tight budget, you can look for smaller vendors and offer advertising to reduce the cost.
- Set a date and time for the event so that you can concentrate on working towards that goal.
- Start to develop branding and color schemes to feature in the decoration.
- Decide early on what online platform you will use to host the event. There are a few options such as those available from ON24, who can provide a solid platform for the event.
Once these decisions have been made, you can work towards the next stage.
Next Stage: 2-3 Months Prior to the Event
At this stage of the planning process, you can begin fine-tuning the final elements of the event.
- Your social media profile should now be set up, and early marketing needs to be started. Teasing the event early on will get people’s attention and hopefully create a following.
- Start contacting speakers who you have identified. Be aware that not all the speakers you want will be available.
- If you are looking to get sponsors for your event, this is the time to start contacting them. Send them a package with all of the information they need to know about the event – and include details about what they can expect to receive in return for participating in it.
- Make sure your event website now has all of the relevant details for attendees, sponsors and speakers to access.
Next Stage: 1 Month Prior to the Event
By this stage, all of the deals with vendors and sponsors should be finalized. Social media should now be buzzing with the event and encourage the speakers to start talking about it on their social media accounts.
If you are using volunteers to help run the event, you should check that they now have all of the details they need. Any uniform they require must be available for them to try on and have ready on the day.
The Day of the Event
All of the planning and organizing has led to this day. However, there is still a lot of work to be done.
- Check the platform that will host the event to ensure it is working and that all the speakers have access to it.
- Send out social media reminders for any last-minute attendees and ensure everyone attends on time.
- Double-check that the speakers are available and put your alternative plan into action for those who cannot attend.
If everything has gone to plan, you will have a smooth-running event that will be enjoyed by all.
After the Event
Once the event is over, it is a good idea to send a few emails to the vendors and speakers to ask for their feedback. You also want to speak to your team to thank and debrief them. This information will go a long way to helping you plan your next event.
Conclusion for Your Online B2B Event!
Although planning an event is stressful and hard work, with careful planning well in advance. That way, you can have a successful B2B online event.