10 Mistakes To Avoid When Hosting A Virtual Trade Show!

This article is intended to help event planners transition to hosting a virtual trade show. There are many questions you should be asking and it is important to understand all of the options you have when taking your trade show virtual.

This article is intended to help event planners transition to hosting a virtual trade show. There are many questions you should be asking and it is important to understand all of the options you have when taking your trade show virtual.

1. Do Not Cancel Your Event!

First and foremost, do not cancel your event altogether. Attendees, exhibitors and sponsors are counting on you to provide them with the opportunities they would normally have at a live trade show. Times are tough for businesses and the idea of no trade show at all is devastating for everyone involved. Exhibitors are eager to pay a discounted rate to be featured in a virtual trade show. Exhibitors have very little overhead and can expect a much higher ROI at a virtual event.

2. You MUST HAVE Video Chat!

Face-to-face conversation is by far the most important aspect of a trade show. Going virtual does not mean you need to sacrifice this priceless experience for your exhibitors and attendees. In fact, quality video chat technology can actually provide exhibitors with new opportunities they would never have at a live event. If video chat is mobile friendly and can ring staff on-the-go, then exhibitors can be using video chat for live product demos, sales presentations, taking orders and even job interviews. Make sure your virtual trade show platform provides one click, instant video chat with exhibitors.

3. Gamification, Contests & Prizes?

One thing live and virtual trade shows have in common is the challenge of driving traffic to exhibitors. Make sure your virtual trade show offers a contest that will incentivize attendees to visit and connect with exhibitors. A quality contest will add excitement and create a fun and memorable experience. A contest is also a great way to up-sell exhibitors to featured packages and attract new sponsors.

4. Pain Free On-boarding Process!

This should actually be first on the list because adopting another new technology is not always a pleasant experience. Make sure you understand the process involved in designing your virtual trade show and the process for exhibitors to create and maintain profiles. You will also need to make sure the virtual trade show platform will play nicely with whatever software, website or mobile app you are using. Make sure the virtual trade show platform can be easily added on to your existing system.

5. Sponsorship & Exhibitor Upgrades!

Your virtual trade show is an opportunity to sell new sponsorship packages. Make sure your exhibitor search page includes adequate space for rotating ads. All advertisements should be trackable so you can show sponsors how much traffic was generated from your event. You should also be able to up-sell featured listings to exhibitors. You can be creative here depending on your event needs. One popular strategy is to offer different amounts of contest entries depending on the package each exhibitor purchases. Attendees will then be attracted to the exhibitors where they can earn more entries.

6. Appointment Scheduling!

Your virtual trade show has the potential of being live 24 hours a day and attendees can visit exhibitors any time from anywhere. It is a must for you to provide attendees the ability to schedule appointments with exhibitors for a time that is convenient for them. The appointment scheduling must also be a trackable feature so you can provide exhibitors with analytics.

7. Create Buzz With Promo Videos!

There is a lot of uncertainty surrounding live events. Now it is more important than ever to create excitement about your virtual trade show. You should be using promo videos to attract exhibitors, sponsors and attendees to your virtual event. They need to hear from you and you can be confident your event is going to be fun, user friendly and enjoyable. A quality virtual trade show platform will provide you with promo videos you can use on your website, social media and in email blasts.

8. Traffic & Participation Analytics!

Information is power. Make sure your virtual trade show platform tracks and provides reports on traffic from your event. You will want to know how many attendees participated in the contest, how many drawing entries they earned and what exhibitors they visited. Exhibitors will want to know who requested information, scheduled appointments and how many video chat conversations took place.

9. Maps, VR, 3D, Oh My!

Make it easy. Virtual trade shows do not have to be complicated. Simplify user experience and make navigation easier. 3D renderings and avatars seem interesting at first glance but once the novelty wears off, users will slowly disengage and lose interest. Instead choose a simple and efficient solution that will guarantee high engagement over a long period of time. Having exhibitor profiles just a click away enables attendees to visit more exhibitors than they normally could at a live trade show. Provide attendees with a simple easy to use exhibitor search.

10. How Long Is Your Event?

And last but not least, how long do you plan to have your virtual trade show active? Remember you are not restricted to the limitations or cost of a traditional live event. There are many benefits to offering your virtual trade show all year long. It creates a permanent resource for your members to have access to suppliers, vendors and sponsors. It also creates additional revenue opportunities for your organization to sell advertising and feature listings throughout the year. There are no limits.

We hope this information is helpful and has given you some new ideas and some confidence to host a virtual trade show. Our virtual trade show platform provides all of these features in addition to first class support.

We hope this information is helpful and has given you some new ideas and some confidence to host a virtual trade show. Our virtual trade show platform provides all of these features in addition to first class support.

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Virtual Trade Shows

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Attendees love our easy to navigate virtual trade shows. Sponsors love being featured in our rotating banner ads.  You will be proud to host your virtual trade show with Exhibitor Connect. Let us take you virtual in style.

Face to face conversation is by far the most important aspect of a trade show. We provide one click video chat with all exhibitors! We also feature appointment scheduling and contests to drive traffic to exhibitor profiles.

Face to face conversation is by far the most important aspect of a trade show. We provide one click video chat with all exhibitors! We also feature appointment scheduling and contests to drive traffic to exhibitor profiles.

Virtual Trade Shows Benefit Everyone!

Attendees, Exhibitors & Event Planners

  • Stay Home & Stay Safe
  • Eliminate Cost of Venue
  • Unlimited Number of Attendees
  • No On-Site Staff to Manage
  • Open 24 Hours a Day
  • Eliminate On-Site Labor & Fees
  • Unlimited Number of Exhibitors
  • Easy Exhibitor Onboarding

Virtual Trade Shows Benefit Everyone!

Attendees, Exhibitors &
Event Planners

  • Stay Home & Stay Safe
  • Open 24 Hours a Day
  • Eliminate Cost of Renting Space
  • Unlimited Number of Attendees
  • No On-Site Staff to Manage
  • Eliminate On-Site Labor & Fees
  • Unlimited Number of Exhibitors
  • Easy Exhibitor Onboarding