By now, we’re all aware of the rising popularity of virtual networking events in the face of the unceasing coronavirus pandemic. And you’ve also probably already heard (one too many times in fact) why now is the perfect time to go virtual/digital/online. One of the key inclinations of businesses today is to hosting a virtual fair to connect with potential clients & customers and market their various products & services on offer. And in doing so, foster meaningful networking connections through the power of digital technologies.
Simply put, a virtual fair is a completely digitized version of a physical business fair, featuring exhibitions organized for companies to showcase & demonstrate all that they have to offer for industry partners, clients, customers, and more. These fairs are usually open to the general public that express interest in the company’s products & services being advertised.
Some of the advantages that hosting a virtual fair enjoys over their in-person counterparts include:
Accessibility – With just a click/tap of a button, people from any part of the world at any given time can join a virtual fair right from the comfort of their homes. Adding to this, virtual fairs are compatible across platforms, making them accessible from most devices that are capable of connecting to the internet.
Cost effectiveness – The bare essential costs of running a virtual fair is estimated to be one third the cost of its physical counterpart. With various factors such as staffing, venue rental, and more excluded from virtual fairs, there are huge savings to be made when it comes to putting in the money for going virtual.
Return on Investment – As an extension of the aforementioned benefit, greater returns on the money invested can be a definitive expectation from taking fairs online/digital. With lower marketing and operating costs from conducting a fair virtually, there is greater control over ROI with respect to investments on ad spending, search engine optimization, email marketing, and more.
Higher attendance – Attendance rates in virtual fairs are always many times higher than that of in-real ones. This is usually attributed to the lack of restrictions when it comes to logistics, finances, and in today’s context – health related concerns. Furthermore, virtual fairs being fully scalable can accommodate a humongous number of attendees, which simply isn’t feasible when organizing a fair in the real world so to speak.
Seamless interaction – Virtual fairs provide far more efficiency when it comes to attendees networking with each other, other participants, and even hosts. This is further amplified with the help of provisions such as networking zones, conference halls, and more, that give audience members a chance to interact with each other in real-time.
Given the current situation, virtual fairs are extremely beneficial to businesses, no matter how big or small. And with the some of the advantages of doing so mentioned above, there honestly is very little reason not to do so. Having said this, the next question that w(sh)ould immediately arise is, “how do I host a virtual fair for my business?”
The answer to the above question first requires an understanding of the different types of virtual fairs, because each one serves its own unique purpose(s) and its effectiveness will invariably vary depending on the intention of your business.
Virtual Job/Career Fairs are ones where job seekers congregate to connect with employers from various different companies. The main purpose of this is for candidates seeking out employment opportunities to directly interact with recruitment managers of different companies and further get to know about the company that they’ll potentially be employed in. Each company has their own booth featuring downloadable resources for interested attendees to go through.
Virtual Benefits Fair are those which are meant to create awareness of the many benefits that a company (or many companies) have to offer, in particular to their own employees and supporting staff. These are designed to facilitate seamless communication for attendees to fully access all the relevant information they need.
Virtual Trade Fairs involve many exhibitors and visitors from different industries (across the country and the glove) to meet up, interact, discuss ideas, exchange information, showcase their new products, market their services, and more.
Virtual Onboarding Fairs are categorized by the process of integrating new people that are hired into a company. These fairs include provisions for orientation, induction, training, and so on, which is achieved through the help of immersive tools like webinars, video streaming, audio chats, and more.
It goes without saying that brand integration is an integral part of personalizing your virtual event and increasing the visibility of your business. With the help of useful tools such as interactive booths, banners, standees, custom themes, social wall integration, display screens, custom domain hosting, and dedicated exhibit spaces, you can draw the collective attention of all audience members to your brand.
Since attendees don’t have to physically get up and go from one place to another in a virtual fair, networking becomes all the more easy & less time consuming. Specific provisions such as networking lounges, conference rooms, and exhibition zones can further help build connectivity among audience members and other participants, and even hosts. The culmination of such elements goes a long way in boosting overall audience involvement and engagement throughout the entirety of your virtual fair.
Major software integrations allow for your virtual fair to remain flexible and extensible. This includes video conferencing, mail, CRM, cloud storage, SMS, social media, chat bots, and payment getaways, to name but a few.
One of the most important necessities for hosting a virtual fair is making sure that it is completely secure. Built in native protection on every level will guarantee that your event, attendees, data, and information is safeguarded from external threats. Some of the sub-features that you should expect include an SSL Certification, password protection, encrypted data, and intrusion detection.
Engaging with audiences can be taken to the next level with the inclusion of fun mini-games throughout your event. These games will keep the enthusiasm of audience members high, which will have many positive implications for your fair as a whole.
The process of capturing and curating data relevant to event performance has been made all the more accessible for event hosts with the help of analytical tools. Leveraging these intelligent tools empowers host organizations to optimize their event to the best of their abilities. Some useful tools that you can leverage for your virtual fair are live polls, Q&As, AMAs, surveys, most downloaded resources, and attendee heat maps.
✔ Partner with the right virtual events platform that will be by your side from conceptualization to execution, preferably with round the clock 24×7 support.
✖ Don’t forget to have a test run for your virtual fair. This step will keep you prepared for any bugs or technical glitches that you may run into later.
✔ Sponsors are considered to be the backbone of virtual networking events. Try and get as many sponsors involved in your virtual fair and weave them into different corners of your event space.
✖ Don’t expect all attendees to be online at the same time. Things like presentations & panel discussions shouldn’t be restricted to live ones; pre-recorded ones should be made accessible to attendees too.
✔Make your virtual fair easily accessible for your attendees. This means optimizing it for devices across different platforms, so that audience can join in from any device.
✖ Don’t forget to analyse the data after the virtual fair is over so that you don’t miss out on valuable information corresponding to your audience.
✔ Include as many interactive elements as possible like polls, quizzes, games, Q&As, and more. Your audience members should not feel deprived of fun activities to participate in throughout the event.
✖ Don’t schedule an event that lasts throughout the entire day. Attendees are generally not available for such long durations. Moreover, not every attendee will want to stay throughout. It is recommended to go for a half-day or less for the duration.
With all of the prerequisite information explained above in detail, the next step for you to take is to find the right virtual events platform to bring your vision to (virtual) reality. And what better platform to recommend, than ours!
Want to host a Virtual Event? Explore the Most powerful Virtual Events Platform to host the best Virtual Events!
Samaaro is the most powerful and one of the best virtual event platform that organizations leverage to host virtual events, virtual exhibitions, virtual conferences, and so much more. Ours is the one platform to go to for all your virtual needs – be it for Business Communication, Sales & Marketing, Education & Career, and Industry Uses to name a few. Our platform is rich in features for your business to effectively leverage to create a memorable virtual experience.