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Haven’t we all heard about online trade shows? Since this era has made us tech-savvy, all the real-world happenings have stepped up to give us the same feel through technology as well. Businesses and trade, in general, are also making this transition from the physical to the virtual world, slowly and gradually. 

One such attempt is hosting online trade shows.

What are Online Trade shows?

Online trade shows showcase the company’s newly launched products or services. Other brand competitors are invited to this event and eventually, such shows become a hub of new partnerships as people from similar industries get a fair chance to network with one another.

As a business’s products or services are the central focus of such events, no risk can be taken. It has to be a top-notch well-managed experience for all the attendees. 

To ensure this smooth flow of the entire event, virtual trade show platforms are brought into the scenario. These are mostly all virtual companies that enable any organizer to set up a suitable platform for their virtual trade show. 

Every other day, startups are coming up with newer versions of the platforms making it a highly competitive arena. While there are especially dedicated virtual trade show platforms, other competitors add an edge by diversifying their offerings.

For instance, we at Puaerte Visual are a virtual event company, we not only manage virtual trade shows but just any other virtual event that a business or organizer might require.

In order to host a perfect online trade show, there are certain prerequisites that can make this newfound transition a stunner move.

1 – Define focus or reason for the show

Online trade is not merely meant to share about newer products or services, but there can be other reasons as well. Like thought leadership or simply improved lead generation. 

Whatever the objective, begin by settling down on one & then proceed ahead. This will help in targeted reach out for the forthcoming virtual trade show.

2 – Find the best suited platform

Every virtual trade show platform offers some basic and other unique features from their end. The decision must be taken to choose the most appropriate one for the current event. 

Demand a demo from the platforms to get a vivid understanding of the platform and bring up all the mandatory demands you have from the platform.  

It is advisable to have a rough framework handy to determine the perfect compatibility between the plan of action and the offering of the platform.

3 – Plan, plan, plan!

After finalizing the hosting platform, begin by planning out the complete event that suits the chosen platform. 

Planning is not only the blueprint for your virtual trade show but also it allows you to prepare for any last-minute issues. When there is a plan in action, it presents an impressive opportunity to track the actual performance of the event to that of the plan.

No great execution is possible without impeccable planning, a dedicated team should be created to carry out the event. Right from creating a  captivating landing page, taking in registration to getting attendees on the day of the virtual trade fair, everything must be mapped out to every possible detail.

4 – Share the schedule with attendees

As online trade shows are usually conducted over a span of 2-3 days and not everyone might have bandwidth or interest to attend all the sessions. Therefore, a well-structured schedule should be shared with the registered attendees for an overall satisfying turnout in all sessions of the event.

5 – Promotion over social media 

Social media is an ideal platform to connect with industry experts as well as the company’s current and potential customer base. Word of mouth cannot be tracked but every social media like tag and share just amplifies the reach of your upcoming virtual trade show. Use it judiciously to have a well-engaged user base.

6 – Improved engagement avenues

A majority of people are suckers for developing professional bonds with other market leaders, the virtual trade shows are the best opportunity for scoring newer & beneficial connections. To keep them entertained, gamification tactics can be included. 

7 – Use the platform wisely

When one hosts an online event, it just widens the scope of giving more than the physical in-person events. In online shows, many digital sources can be used to demonstrate the product or service features. Use digital documents like products brochures, licenses, etc. to develop credibility & improved transparency.

8 – Follow up measures

Ensure that all the ways to get attendee feedback are in place, either as a feedback or review form. Follow-ups are a near to perfect option for estimating the impact and performance of any virtual trade show. 

9 – Focus on attendees’ experience

Virtual event platforms are buzzworthy in the current scenario as these give you lively experiences in the comfort of your homes. Every organizer is responsible to provide a wholesome experience to their attendees. 

10 – Study analytics post-event

Hosting an online trade show through a virtual platform lets you reap the fruit of your own bearing. While you cannot track the engagement and response accurately in a physical trade fair; it is feasible to do it through online means because every click is recorded. Every organizer must consider analyzing the post-event analytics to gauge an accurate level of engagement at multiple avenues in the event.

Focus on these golden points while hosting your online trade show and you shall be satisfied with the outcome that awaits you in the form of boosted engagement from your attendees.

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