Do virtual events generate ROI?
Virtual events allow companies to reach and connect with their colleagues and customers from the comfort and safety of their own homes. They can bring many benefits to your company, including reducing travel and accommodation expenditures, but, does it pay to do virtual events?
Data is key
One of the first steps to ensure event ROI is to look at different metrics and KPIs.
Looking back at your previous, in-person events with prior sponsor packages can help you understand what stakeholders may be looking for whilst also leading to new opportunities. From there, you can look at the specific event ROI metrics and plan more precise strategies to ensure the maximum return on marketing investments.
Revisiting previous events can also be important in understanding what worked well and what could be improved in future events. One of the biggest benefits to virtual events is data, although physical events can provide data, it is nowhere near as detailed as what information you can gather from your virtual attendance.
Insights from virtual events can include detailed demographics about our audience, which sessions, topics, and presenters were most engaging, social buzz, how long attendees spent with exhibitors, which sponsor ads were more effective and much more.
The best way to demonstrate growth is to compare year-on-year data and virtual events provide a treasure of data to help you measure your events ROI.
Event ROI is different for every attendee and it is important to understand their different journeys to achieve maximum success. Below are some of the key virtual stakeholders and what event ROI means for them:
Virtual Attendee ROI:
Every attendee is different but some basic ways to measure their behavior in your virtual event are; how much time did they give to you and the event? Was the event free or ticketed? Did they engage and interact with the event and if so how and for how long?
If you include gamification elements you can award points to encourage certain engagement attendee behaviors too. This could include anything from checking into sessions, completing quizzes and surveys, visiting exhibitors, downloading content, or clicking on sponsor banners. Measuring the average points earned per attendee can indicate how engaged your audience was overall.
Social activity can also provide key insights, the number of messages on your event’s social wall can gauge overall engagement. Monitor messages around your event’s hashtag to see what your attendees are saying about your online event.
Virtual Sponsor ROI:
Sponsors are looking for ‘stage time’ with your event, and that shouldn’t stop with virtual events! It’s critical to provide your virtual sponsors and exhibitors with data to support ROI. Virtual event data such as sponsor page sessions, impressions, CTR, CPC, Views, and Avg watch time may be important for you to share with your event sponsors.
Virtual Exhibitor ROI:
Unlike in-person events, the attendees that do turn up to exhibitor stands will already be interested and will bypass the attendees that are just passing through. Key measures of exhibitor’s ROI are; the number of exhibitor sessions, unique visitors, avg session time, downloads, enquiries, and conversion rates from the event.
When it comes to Virtual Event ROI, everything can be captured, evaluated, and reported. Attendees, interactions throughout the event, and feedback will all be measured against the time and effort they put in. The approach to your virtual event ROI will have the biggest impact on the value and amount of data you collect.
How we can help
Unsure of where to start with your virtual event? Contact us and we will help you with all your virtual event needs and help you collect the right data to measure your virtual event goal!