Major Mistakes To Avoid In Your Virtual Trade Events

Major Mistakes To Avoid In Your Virtual Trade Events

In the age of increasing digitization, people and companies were already moving towards digital modes of communication but COVID-19 provided the rapid impetus to jumpstart the process. The pandemic forced people indoors and in their houses which necessitated businesses to conduct virtual conferences and virtual trade events.

Many businesses made the jump successfully with research showing that 73% of event planners successfully pivoted their events to virtual in 2020.

And why wouldn’t they? Virtual trade events offer many of the same advantages as physical trade shows and more.

However, it is very easy to commit some cardinal mistakes when arranging your first virtual trade show so below are some of the key mistakes you should take care to avoid when organizing your own.

In the age of increasing digitization, people and companies were already moving towards digital modes of communication but COVID-19 provided the rapid impetus to jumpstart the process.

The pandemic forced people indoors and in their houses which necessitated businesses to conduct conferences and trade shows differently as well.

Many businesses made the jump successfully with research showing that 73% of event planners successfully pivoted their events to virtual in 2020.

And why wouldn’t they? Virtual trade events offer many of the same advantages as physical trade shows and more.

However, it is very easy to commit some cardinal mistakes when arranging your first virtual trade show so below are some of the key mistakes you should take care to avoid when organizing your own.

Lack of rehearsal of your virtual trade events

Neglecting to rehearse your event is one of the worst mistakes you can make for your virtual trade show.

Don’t get us wrong, lack of rehearsal and practice is a mistake even for a physical trade show but you are allowed more leeway in them to naturally divert and go off on tangents. One comment or question from an attendee can divert the presentation for a short while.

In a virtual trade show, however, the whole affair seems a bit more formal from behind screens and any lack of practice will soon see your audience numbers drop.

Practice, practice, and more practice! That should be the motto for your virtual trade show to make it as smooth and seamless as possible.

Content heavy slides

Look, we get it. Slides and PowerPoint presentations are in the toolkit of any presenter and they are indeed useful aids for trade show presentations.

However, more and more modern communication and presentation approaches now advocate for a more presenter-focused version of presenting instead of relying heavily on slides.

Having content slides that are dense and overstuffed is already problematic for a physical trade show but practically a one-way trip to failure for a virtual trade show.

Your audiences will not stick around to hear you prattle off slides they could read for themselves. Of event professionals, 39% agreed in 2019 that ‘engaging attendees’ was the most crucial element of a live event and you can kiss engagement goodbye if you have a wall of text.

Keep slides simple and let the presenter do the heavy lifting.

Poor choice of speakers for your virtual trade events

We cannot stress this point enough.

The next mistake you should avoid is hiring the wrong kind or caliber of speakers for your event.

The role and importance of the speaker increase even more so in a virtual trade show than a physical one since they are the sole avenue of engagement for the audience.

Furthermore, you might be thinking that hiring the same person from your physical shows would be best since they are great at presentations but virtual presenting is a completely different ball game.

Not only does the style of engagement need to be different but the responsibility is also greater on a virtual presenter to not only keep the audience engaged but juggle other tasks at once too.

If you want to use your in-person event speaker then get them trained or preferably, opt for a specialized professional for virtual trade events.

Event duration

Physical trade shows allow attendees and audiences a lot of opportunities to freshen up and take a break. They can socialize, mingle, eat out, visit other booths and do all sorts of activities possible in a conferencing event.

They can thus afford to be 8 hour-long events. A virtual trade show by its nature is more limited and thus you cannot replicate event timings.

Having an event  8 hours daily is a recipe for disaster. No one will be interested in being glued to a screen for 8 hours.

You should therefore research the most optimum event duration and timings which will depend on several factors.

Faulty technology and data infrastructure

Failure to ensure that your virtual trade show uses the most modern, optimized, and seamless technological and data infrastructure will deal a massive blow to your operations in many ways.

From event registration to signup to log in on the day of the event to collecting audience data and more; ensuring that you have the infrastructure in place which is designed to tackle and handle all these operations will be key.

A cumbersome interface will leave your attendees annoyed and see your virtual trade show audience begin to drop while if your data analytics is lacking then you will be left empty of crucial information.

You can opt for professional event organizers like AladdinB2B to set up your technology and data analytics infrastructure in place.

Neglecting audiences

You might be thinking, you rehearsed, your content seems to be optimized and you have a specialized virtual trade show speaker.

What more needs to be done?

Plenty, as it turns out. Another major mistake that can be committed in a virtual trade show despite honing the above elements is neglecting your audiences.

Your speaker might be very passionate and magnetic but they alone will not suffice. You will need to plan for and cater to your audience to bring them into the experience.

How? Through many ways such as:

  • Q&A sessions
  • Gamification
  • Networking events
  • Live chat sessions

And much more. The point is, attendees can probably record your event and watch it any time. Your virtual trade show should give them an incentive to attend live.

Conclusion

We see that while virtual trade events may seem not that different from in-person events, the actual minutiae and organizing involved in them is very different and the above are some of the major mistakes you should look to avoid.

Opting for professional event organizers like AladdinB2B that specialize in virtual trade events will help you avoid many of these pitfalls. Our experience and technology will ensure a higher ROI for you, enhanced networking opportunities, a better experience for the show’s attendees, and a smoothly run event.If you want to digitize your next event? AladdinB2B will show you how.


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