In 2020, the global Virtual Event Platform market was valued at $9.03 billion. By 2028, it is expected to reach an estimated value of $22.75 billion. Virtual events continue to have a huge impact in the modern digital era and are likely here to stay for the long haul.
While in-person events are slowly coming back into existence, many still have concerns over personal health and safety. Travel expenses and trying to receive time off from work to attend these events can also be an issue.
Attendee engagement is key to executing a successful event. But how can you boost your pre-event attendee engagement even before the event has started? And is it possible to mix virtual and in-person events together?
This guide will provide you with ways to enhance the attendee experience. As well as how to boost pre-event attendee engagement and improve your event marketing. Keep reading to discover more information below.
For events requiring a paid registration to attend, you'll often see a deadline for early registration cut-offs listed on the event planning page. The earlier your attendees register, the lower their registration fee will be. As time gets closer to the event's start date, the registration rate will rise accordingly.
Early registration rates can improve your attendee engagement. Attendees do not want to pay the higher rates associated with late registration. Early registrants already feel as though they are receiving a higher value by saving on registration rates.
Limiting the number of early bird registration slots also creates an implied scarcity causing a sense of urgency for the potential event attendee to jump on the offer. This event marketing plan can help drive up your pre-event registration and overall attendee engagement.
Hashtags can be worth their weight in gold when it comes to event marketing on social media. Multiple platforms all across social media from Facebook to Twitter and Instagram and TikTok use hashtags for trending topics and breaking news stories.
You'll want to brainstorm a catchy and memorable hashtag to assign to your event that event attendees and registrants can use to share on social media. With enough attendee engagement on social media utilizing this hashtag, you can further boost your event's awareness. On Twitter alone, 125 million hashtags are tweeted out every day.
Rhyming and pun-based hashtags can be especially fun. You'll also want to ensure your hashtag is legible since the format requires that all of the words used must run together.
Offering branded goodies is a great way to increase attendee engagement. It's also free advertising for your event or your brand.
Whether you provide a whole swag bag of branded items or the standard hats, t-shirts, wristbands, or other merchandise items, it is a surefire way to get your attendees pumped and ready. Give out items that relate to your brand and have usefulness to them.
For example, if you are a brand that promotes a certain type of alcohol, then offering a branded "hangover kit" to your event attendees at registration is a match made in heaven for event marketing. Make it memorable. Think outside of the box.
As stated above, if you wish to increase attendee engagement, you should offer a secondary way to join in on the event. Livestreaming services are now used for everything from weddings to church services and concerts.
This ability for anyone to join in from wherever they may be in the world is a boon for event planners to create events with far-reaching event metrics that in-person-only events can't obtain on their own.
A survey found that 72% of individuals would still attend virtual events even with in-person events coming back into the picture. The convenience of still being able to be present at an event through a live video feed is a cost-effective form of improving the attendee experience, near or far.
Social media is also an ideal place to run contests leading up to your event. The possibility of receiving prizes or upgrades simply by completing social media challenges will further drive up your attendee engagement.
Each task completed on social media following the instructions before the event earns one entry. Participants in these contests will create exposure for your event.
You can offer a membership upgrade or a VIP event attendance package. For an event with notable keynote speakers, this could also include a one-on-one mentorship session or a private lunch conference as the top prize entrant.
Runner-up prizes could include signed book copies, additional drink coupons for the event, or upgraded hotel accommodations.
To expand upon your social media reach, you should also provide the necessary digital tools your event attendees will need to psych themselves up before the event.
This can include downloadable profile picture frames, printable photo props, and cover photos they can use to inform others on social media of their attendance. This lets your event attendees do all of the legwork to promote your event and increase attendee engagement.
This form of event marketing can create a sense of FOMO (fear of missing out) that could encourage their friends to also sign-up to attend the event. You may also have an integrated event countdown clock that ticks away the time until the big day.
Before your event has even started, it is a good idea to have a special website or forum set up. This is where registered attendees can view information such as itineraries and find answers to FAQs. You can also use this platform to increase attendee engagement among other participants.
Post weekly or even daily questions and polls and encourage involvement. Event attendees can share what they are most looking forward to on the list of planned event activities.
They can also engage in event icebreakers. Or partake in breakout room events where a video chat room leader facilitates activities and discussions. This will help event attendees get to know one another before the event and build new networking opportunities.
Not only will a mobile app allow you to track your event metrics, but it is also an invaluable tool for maximizing attendee engagement. Get up-to-the-minute attendance statuses in real-time. Provide your attendees with updated information and resources.
Encourage attendees to engage with the app through push notification alerts. Get them to post videos and pictures of themselves to amp up the anticipation. Use quizzes and polls to see what event activities the attendees are most excited about.
Offer sneak peeks and give out clues about the event that can only be found in the app. Or hold photo scavenger hunts with prompts of items the app users must find. This will further intrigue event attendees.
In the digital era, practically everything is now available in a virtual form, including photo booths. A virtual photo booth can truly set your event apart, well before your event has even started.
A virtual photo booth puts your event attendees in control of creating their own unique digital content. A browser-based photo portal allows event attendees to access a virtual photo booth that is just bursting with fun features.
Event attendees can find custom-branded digital backdrops and virtual props for their photos. They can also use special frames and digital photo stickers linked to your brand and the specific event.
A live web photo wall gallery updates attendee photos as they happen. Guests can browse through and find inspiration for their own photoshoot ideas. Or they can find their friends' pictures in real-time.
The "Add a Friend" feature also allows for multiple people to be present in one photo. So everyone can get in on the fun.
Use the virtual mosaic feature to create one large photograph out of everyone else's individual photos.
But it doesn't just stop at photos either. Your custom virtual photo booth allows for the creation of custom GIFs and Boomerang looping videos.
GIFs are more static images pieced together to make a moving picture. Whereas Boomerangs allow for more free-flowing animations.
Guests can also use the virtual photo booth to produce their own video confessions. They'll feel like they're on their own reality show.
When you give your attendees a platform to create their own user-generated content, your attendance engagement will increase. It is also a great way for receiving guest feedback and reviews after the event.
Accessing the virtual photo booth before the event encourages registered event attendees to share their creations to social media. This branded content links back to your event and improves your event marketing. It's free promotional material.
There are many ways to increase event attendance, but you can't beat the nostalgia factor of a photo booth made virtual.
If you really want to kick attendee engagement up a notch, there's our hybrid photo booth option. It combines a virtual and in-person photo booth. Whether they're joining in from afar or are right in the middle of the action, all of your guests receive a unique interactive experience.
Contact Us today to get a quote and book an interactive photo booth for your next event from OutSnapped.