Instead of cancelling events, companies are moving to virtual platforms, opening attendance to a wider audience, and surpassing their initial reach. Digital pop up stores with merchandise to purchase in an online store are a hit with both attendees and host companies. Instead of purchasing items ahead of the event, the attendees have more choice and you are not holding inventory. Yes, this type of planning has some logistics involved but ultimately, it is a winning strategy.
Swag Bags Drive Signups
In general, great merchandise can be used to incentivize registrations. Unique gifts or popular name brands with high perceived value help move the needle for individuals on the fence about signing up for a virtual event. There is nothing stopping you from tiered levels, with premium gift packages available to only the first initial registrants, with different gift packages at different levels of registration. After-all, a robot that responses to your voice commands is pretty cool or a product that with the touch of your finger can do 5 different things solves- well 5 different problems at once!
Don't forget that branded merchandise, especially apparel, is not just for attendees. Apparel makes a great gift for hosts, moderators, presenters – anyone customer-facing. Your goal is to increase brand visibility and creating pride around an event. Consider branding in a new location.
Once everyone has their product in hands, it is all about maximizing impressions. Social media can increase those impressions exponentially, especially if the event's got a hashtag everyone can use. The whole key is creating a gift that is cool enough to get everyone really excited, so they want to take that photo and post it on Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn for all their followers to see their new gear.
Are you looking at Q4 and even Q1 for 2021? Right now is the best time to start exploring the shift to an online format, explain how to integrate this platform into your event planning. Check out this post for a way to add some laughs and raise your shares with fun social media posts! As you start your planning, keep in mind, we love fresh ideas!