Given the increased presence of Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) technologies in different facets of society, it’s no wonder that their tools slowly seep into the corporate sphere. Virtual trade shows (or VTS for short) represent the next step in bringing relevant professionals, brands and businesses from across the globe together under one roof – all from the comfort of their office floors.
Data published by Statista indicates that 82% of trade show visitors are directly involved in making purchase decisions for themselves or their businesses, with 80% making the decision based on samples, presentations, and demonstrations of products or services.
In addition, according to Corbin Ball & Co, 91% of trade show attendees expressed that their presence on the event itself impacted their buying decisions going forward, with 53% of customers more likely to purchase items and services from brands that utilize VR in a meaningful way.
Thus, organizing your next trade show in a virtual environment is more than welcome for a variety of reasons. However, maximizing your brand’s revenue generation for the duration of said event is also essential to make the virtual trade show viable in the long run. With that said, let’s take a look at what amazing virtual events can do for your brand, as well as some of the most pivotal ways in which you can maximize your revenue by relying on virtual trade shows for lead generation, sales and exposure.
The Benefits of Hosting a Virtual Trade Show
Let’s talk about the benefits of virtual trade shows compared to their traditional hands-on counterparts before diving into their monetization opportunities. By definition, virtual trade shows are cloud-based and managed via a centralized software package. This allows for complete, around-the-clock control over every aspect of the trade show, including the floor’s design, individual exhibition placement, and advertisement just to name a few of the elements.
As such, these amazing virtual events will allow you to host, market and monetize your knowledge of the industry, network with relevant businesses and generate leads for your brand without having to invest into a physical trade show and its branding. Coupled with writing localization and editing services from a dedicated platform such as Pick Writers, a virtual trade show will bring a vast array of benefits to your business, including but not limited to:
- Create a global industry presence
- Eliminate travel logistics and expenses
- High degree of attendee interactivity
- A plethora of content types to present
- Streamlined data generation and storage
Maximizing Virtual Trade Show Revenue
Save on Print Expenses
No matter the industry you operate in, trade shows organized under your business’ banner will undoubtedly cost a lot in terms of branding and logistics. Most importantly, trade shows require marketing materials, promo packages and other printed content such as fliers, business cards, brochures, and ID cards just to name a few.
Luckily, virtual trade shows effectively eliminate the necessity for any form of printed content on your show floor. Any and all content you use for marketing, branding and exposure purposes can simply be uploaded and positioned in optimal places throughout your trade show for great effect and at zero operational cost to boot.
Direct Visitors via CTA
As we’ve mentioned previously, trade show attendees are likely to make purchases on the spot if they are satisfied with what they see and hear in regards to the brands they’re interested in. This is where virtual trade show navigation comes into play as a pivotal element related to lead and revenue generation.
Calls to action can be placed around the virtual trade show as they can successfully help attendees navigate in-between exhibition stands, presentations and different businesses and their representatives. This will eliminate downtime and focus the attention of your virtual trade show on the exhibitors themselves, facilitating maximum revenue generation as a result.
Live Webinar Presentations
Given its cloud-based nature, a virtual trade show will enable you and your exhibitors to present and demonstrate products and services on the spot. Presentations can be hosted on individual exhibition stands or formulated as discussion panels or educational presentations depending on your needs.
These can be used to introduce new industry trends, trade show exclusive sales offers and other attendee benefits among others. Webinars with chat, Q&A and attendee interaction can lead to high revenue generation, exposure for you as the host of the trade show, as well as lucrative networking opportunities.
One of the most straightforward ways to monetize your virtual trade show, generate leads and make the event worth your while is to introduce advertisement onto the show floor. You can inform your exhibitors and network partners of potential advertisement spaces and the going rates at which you are willing to rent those spaces for their marketing needs.
Advertisements in the form of banners, posters, animation, and other content types can efficiently communicate your intent with the trade show while also helping you cover for its costs. This approach to revenue generation will facilitate minimal costs, efficient revenue generation, and networking among industry representatives in a unique virtual manner.
The advantage of relying on a virtual environment for your trade show is its ability for e-commerce integration. Whether you sell products yourself or allow exhibitors to sell their own for a commission fee, a virtual trade show will allow you to enable an e-commerce environment on the show floor.
This means that any attendee interested in an item or a service present on the trade show can immediately opt to buy it and have it delivered without the need to visit other platforms. Likewise, a wish cart can also be utilized to allow individual attendees to create lists of items they may want to purchase down the line, adding to the extensive and user-friendly e-commerce integration.
Post-Event Performance Analysis
Lastly, the best way to ensure maximum revenue generation from your virtual trade show is to conduct post-event analysis on a regular basis. The data generated by your virtual trade show software is freely available for research and analysis at any moment, allowing for a high degree of control and insight into what works and doesn’t work.
Everything from attendee interactions, purchase patterns and content engagement to ROI can be analyzed for bottlenecks and potential improvements down the line. This is a great opportunity to also take attendee feedback and criticism into consideration and merge the two data pools into an applicable improvement plan for your virtual trade show going forward.
While it may seem unorthodox at first, opting for a virtual trade show solution will ensure that your brand stands out from the competition and attracts a lucrative pool of networking partners and industry experts from across the globe. Not only that, but you will also be able to monetize and cover for your virtual trade show expenses more easily and with higher ROI generation compared to traditional, on-site trade show ever could.
Explore creative ways to introduce VTS into your business model and gauge the interest of your business network in regards to potential exhibitors, lecturers, and influencers who may want to pitch in and enrich your trade show. Before you know it, you will have found an innovative, out-of-the-box solution for lead generation and exposure with its own set of revenue generation possibilities to boot.
About the Author
Donald Fomby is a professional marketer and writer. He loves dispersing the knowledge he gained while working as a marketer with others. You can unlock valuable marketing hacks and read more from him at 3to5Marketing.