Despite advice to the contrary, most organizations rely heavily on in person events to drive sales activity, which has left many adrift in a sea of cancelled events and online event pivots. How do sales teams, accustomed to in person sales, network and drive lead generation in an event with no opportunity to interact with prospective buyers face to face?
Here are ScaleHouse’s best tips and tricks for surviving (and thriving) in an online event environment.
- Cancelled event? Create your own. Many event organizers are pivoting to an online event format, however, that’s not always the case. If there is an event you planned on attending that’s no longer being hosted (offline OR online) determine opportunities to create your own webinar, discussion forum or online happy hour by connecting with speakers or attendees who have similar business needs or interests.
- Focus on building, not closing. Connecting strictly online makes it more difficult than ever to build relationships with prospects, so take it slow. Pivot your thinking from trying to make an immediate sale to focusing on the long-term opportunity. Use event networking apps respectfully and do your research on prospects in advance to ensure you're truly providing a value add (or in other words, giving instead of getting).
- Be generous with your time.As this pandemic morphs from a sprint to a marathon, most of us are getting a serious case of online fatigue, which means conference organizers are, more often than not, strapped for speakers, session moderators or mentors. Offering to speak, host a session or serve as a guide to someone who can benefit from your experience, elevates both your personal and company brand.
- Stop apologizing. Whether it’s your dog barking or your four-year-old trying to decapitate you with a fake sword in the middle of a video conference, just go with the flow. These moments humanize you and can help bring you closer to your audience/prospect – we are all adjusting to being “camera ready” 10+ hours a day.
Online connections can feel as personal as offline if you take the time to adapt your approach.You may be missing live networking opportunities but there are plenty of opportunities to build your professional network and pool of new business prospects while working remotely.
What are your best hacks for working online events?