The never-ending brand boost: why the best virtual events stay open

The never-ending brand boost: why the best virtual events stay open

We’ve said it before: virtual events are powerful. An event is a time-efficient, impactful way of getting you, your passion and your product to your target audience.

And! The reach of your event goes way beyond your ‘live days’. Once you’ve put in that initial work, your event can go on and on.

But how?

For starters, if you leave your event open, people can keep discovering it. We've seen over 5000 events in the last year - and around 3500, or 70% of them (!) are still active for at least 6 months after their initial run.

Why?

There are lots of reasons, but I always like to start with the marketing “Rule of  7”:

A consumer will interact with a brand approximately 7 times before they take action.

Basically, you need people to keep finding your brand in lots of places, and in lots of different ways. That’s a LOT of material for you to produce in order to monetize your audience 😬. But never fear - this is where content repurposing comes to the rescue! (More on that later.)

It comes down to this: if you’re keen for all your hard work to keep paying off - without any additional efforts on your part - keeping your event active is a top priority.

Here’s why:

  1. You’ll harness the power of SEO to make your content more discoverable.

After your event, HeySummit automatically optimizes your pages and content to be SEO-ready. Our platform enables rich SEO schema meta data set for details of your event, speakers and tickets to help search engines know how to display the content within the search results. That means - people actively looking for services and solutions within your industry will be more likely to find your event page than your regular website. More user traffic will translate to more impressions and more sales  - getting your name out there with no extra effort.

Keen to leave your page online but less keen to leave your sessions open for new attendees? If you’re an Event Organizer who’d like to pause new registrations, we have an [SEO plan] available that keeps your data all together and event up and running. You could also keep registrations open by sticking with your current plan, enabling you to reap benefits #2 and #3.

  1. You’ll extend your reach.

Keeping registrations open means you can continue to generate revenue from new sign ups indefinitely, and you’ll also keep the flexibility to periodically add new content to it. A win-win for organizers and attendees alike!

Think about it: with an initial short “live” run, you likely wouldn’t have been able to reach every single person interested in your niche. Leaving your event open for registrations enables your sessions to be discovered and watched by more people. Whilst these replay sessions might lack the engagement of a live session, having more eyes on your brand is always a great thing, and generating more leads could prove useful when it’s time to run your next virtual event.

  1. You’ll make the most of your time and effort.

Your event sessions = rich content at your fingertips - with subject matter experts doing the talking! There’s no need for new research and idea formulation. Leverage the hard work you’ve already put in, and keep your event open (Leaving you plenty of time to start planning your next virtual event 😉).

Getting from ‘Live’ to ‘Open’

To keep your event open to new registrations, here are some event details you may want to tweak:

Remove mention of event dates and time - you might turn off some potential attendees if they see the event has long past; they might get the impression the information is outdated

Updating the copy of emails that get sent to attendees

If you’ve set up additional registration questions or feedback surveys, revise the language to make clear that the event is now operating in an “on-demand” format

Repurposing your content

Remember, the more interactions you have with your target audience, the better. Keeping your event open is the best, easiest way to keep people coming to your brand.

But you also want to keep your access to the event content - so you can repurpose it to extend your reach even more! Here are our top tips for repurposing your event content.

Set Yourself Up for Success: Before and During Your Event

Consider the prep work you can do pre-event to make content repurposing faster and easier after the event.

Pre-recorded talks are easy to transcribe - and you don’t even have to wait for your event to start! Just run the videos through a service like Happy Scribe or Otter.ai and you’ve got a full transcript in minutes.

BONUS! If you do this before the event, you can use the transcription as captions for your event. Having captions is a great way to make your event more accessible, and - since it boosts SEO - it also makes good business sense.

You can also transcribe any live talks and speaker Q&A sessions - just remember to hit ‘Record’ once they go live!

With only a quick few steps, you’ll have all of your content in video and written format (remember - a video can also instantly be turned into audio using any mp4 converter tool).

Now: what will you do with it?

How Do I Decide Which Content to Repurpose?

Trick question! The answer is really “all content”, but here’s a general set of questions you can ask yourself when looking through your existing content:

  • Is it Evergreen? → There’s no need to reinvent the wheel and churn out content day in and day out. Some content is timeless, so don’t let it go to waste.
  • Is it Popular? → Did one of your talks receive rave reviews, or spark lots of discussion amongst your attendees? The number of views, comments, or shares is a clear marker of great material. If your attendees loved it, it’s probably going to create lots of buzz from others in your target audience.
  • Is it Trendy? → Maybe one of your session topics is back in the spotlight - capitalize on the renewed interest by repurposing it.
  • Can I Spruce it Up? → If your content doesn’t fit any of the three categories above, you can breathe new life into it, for example, by adding new sections, updating your facts and figures or tweaking the point of view. Through your event, you’ll have learned tons about what does and doesn’t work for your audience -- use that new knowledge to make something even more effective.

Still wondering about medium or format options? Here are some of our faves:

For written content, or transcripts:

  • Blog posts
  • E-books
  • Online courses
  • Copy for an email drip campaign or newsletter
  • Case studies
  • Podcast episode (script or topic outline)

For audiovisual content:

  • Images or infographics
  • Short, snappy clips of your sessions on social media. Can you capture the value or experience of your event in a few minutes? This is a great way to pull people into your event replay (and generate enthusiasm for your next event!).

One final idea! Draw material from your event attendees. Why not revisit questions from your sessions in a public ‘Question of the Day’ series, where you answer a question using a snippet from your event? This is also a great way of modelling the kind of experience attendees can expect when they engage with your events.

Feeling inspired? Start building your first HeySummit event today.

Rob

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