A guide for creating, hosting, and promoting a virtual summit

July 29, 2022

Are you ready to launch a virtual summit?

While it may be tempting to launch your first virtual summit quickly, there are some essential steps that you need to consider to ensure it ends up being successful. A successful virtual summit means you reach your audience’s target goals and generate a profit for your business.

In this article, we’ll talk more about the essential steps needed for creating, hosting, and promoting a virtual summit.

Step #1: Brainstorm virtual summit topic ideas

Step #1: Brainstorm virtual summit topic ideas

For starters, it’s important to brainstorm solid virtual summit topic ideas and discuss them with your team members. Validating virtual summit topic ideas is a great way to ensure that the topic you’re looking to cover will sit well with your audience. You don’t want to be spending time and resources preparing for the virtual summit only to find out the topic you decided on isn’t what your audience is interested in.

Instead, asking your audience or people on your email list about various virtual summit topic ideas is better. This gives you a better idea of what users want to see from your brand and gives you a better direction for creating a successful virtual summit.

To do this, you can email everyone on your email list, asking them to choose between various topic ideas and which one they want you to cover during a virtual summit.

In addition to this, you also want to ensure that the virtual summit topic you decide to go with aligns perfectly with your business’s primary goals. Simply put, you need to focus on the outcome of your virtual summit and what it will help achieve.

Step #2: Set major goals

Step #2: Set major goals

As we mentioned earlier, ensuring that your virtual summit’s outcome aligns well with what you’re looking to achieve is essential. This is why you need to set significant goals for your virtual summit. This helps define success much more quickly and is a great way to set a visual target for you and your team members.

Setting significant goals also helps you keep all your team members in check and on the same page with each other. This is highly important for when you’ll be in charge of managing everyone and making your virtual summit go as planned.

However, there are a few things you should consider when setting primary goals for your virtual summit:

  • Audience size. Ideally, you want the audience size to be as large as possible. Estimating a realistic number is essential for setting significant goals and making preparations to make sure everyone has a great time at your event.
  • After an estimated audience size, you can estimate how much revenue or high-quality leads the virtual summit will generate. This will help you manage the budget for your virtual summit better.
  • Team members. It’s also important to look around you and consider what skills your team members already have. This can make it easier for you to assign tasks and ensure that team members can efficiently do them when the time comes.

Step #3: Consider all speakers of the event

Now, with a clearer picture of what your virtual summit will look like, you can start gathering all the event’s leading speakers.

Since it’s a virtual summit and the audience expects someone to keep speaking about the topic, you need to make sure all speakers of the event are ready. First, you need to consider the total time of the virtual summit and allocate time slots accordingly to speakers.

For instance, you want someone to open up the virtual summit and welcome the audience. Then you also want the same person to be prepared to end the virtual summit and thank the audience for attending.

Other than assigning time slots to all speakers of your virtual summit, you also want to ensure you have “back-up” speakers or secondary speakers in case something goes wrong at the last minute.

Step #4: Create a list of all tools and services

One of the most critical factors of a successful virtual summit is the tech behind it. This means you must ensure all tools and services needed to host your virtual summit are ready to go.

For starters, you will need to use a solid virtual summit platform, such as Zoom, to host the virtual summit. You also want to make sure all your audio equipment works perfectly with the device you’re using to host the virtual summit. In addition, consider hosting a “test summit” to ensure the equipment works perfectly so everything goes smoothly during the event.

Step #5: Improve outreach

Step #5: Improve outreach

Promoting your virtual summit is also essential if you want to get your message in front of your target audience.

You also need to target the right people as you want them to purchase your product or service after the virtual summit ends. For this reason, you need to create successful email marketing campaigns that help attract a list of people who are genuinely interested in your content and looking for solutions that your brand can provide. With a more giant email list, you can send notifications about your virtual summit and encourage them to join.

In addition, it’s also a great idea to reach people out on social media since it’s one of the most popular forms of communication today. You can publish posters of your virtual summit in groups relevant to the topic your event covers. This will help catch the attention of users who are looking for similar solutions and helps you increase attendee numbers for your virtual summit.

Step #6: Appoint team members

As we mentioned earlier, it’s essential to have a good understanding of what skills people around you have. This can help you decide what tasks should be assigned to which team members so everyone does their job efficiently.

If you don’t have many people around you, you can start recruiting new team members for the virtual summit. For this, you will need to thoroughly interview candidates and assess if they are the right fit for your business and for hosting a successful virtual summit. To find skilled individuals for specific tasks, you can hire someone from popular freelance websites such as UpWork or Fiverr.

Step #7: Optimize your website

Depending on whether you host a virtual summit on your own website or host it on a SaaS platform, you will have to optimize your site. If you’re hosting the event on your own website, you will need to ensure it’s fully responsive and can handle traffic load when needed. This way, your virtual summit site will not break down during the event, hurting your brand image.

On the other hand, if you’re using a SaaS platform to host your virtual summit, you will still need to optimize your site to some extent. For instance, you will have to create an engaging landing page and set up registration on your site. In addition to this, you also want to make your virtual summit site easy to navigate for all types of users.

Step #8: Run your virtual summit

While the virtual summit is being hosted, one of your primary responsibilities is to make sure everything is going as planned.

This means you need to make sure all team members are doing the tasks assigned to them on time and all event speakers are prepared to go on stage.

Additionally, you can also interact with your audience live as a way to keep them engaged and answer their queries. This not only helps create a sense of exclusivity for your audience but also helps boost customer satisfaction.

Step #9: Follow up with attendees

Once the summit is over, you can ask all attendees to fill in a quick feedback form so they can explain how their experience went. This is one of the best ways to know your virtual summit’s success and can help you identify and fix any potential problems. This way, you can host a more successful virtual summit in the future that caters to the needs of your audience better.

Conclusion

Creating, hosting, and promoting a successful virtual summit can be challenging, especially if this is your first time organizing one. However, it’s much easier to do if you have the proper planning in mind before actually hosting the virtual summit.

This means you need to decide on a solid virtual summit topic idea and validate it, so you don’t end up wasting time and resources on something your audience doesn’t want to see. You also want to consider your brand’s significant goals, so it’s easier to decide what you want to achieve with your virtual summit. The next stage is ensuring all main event speakers are in place and all the tools and services you need to host the virtual summit are working seamlessly.

After putting efforts in place to promote your virtual summit, you need to make sure your website is up-to-par and can handle the extra new site visitors. In addition to this, it’s also a great idea to ask your attendees for feedback so it’s easier to know what improvements you should make the next time you host a virtual summit.

Do you have any questions about creating, hosting, and promoting a successful virtual summit? Let us know in the comments box below.

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