Monetizing Virtual Events: Industry Trends
To identify industry trends for monetizing conference format virtual events in the United States. Trends should be related to the cost and pricing structure for attendee tickets at such events and should also look into business cases where such events have been organized for free. Research should also try to locate instances which help to understand whether an increase in the number of attendees help lead generation and other brand benefits to outweigh the ticket price.
- According to industry experts, there are several ways to monetize a virtual conference such as charging the attendees a registration fee for allowing access to the virtual event, or charging a subscription fee while allowing the content to live on in a learning management system or LMS.
- In case of a learning management system, people who have paid for a subscription can avail archived conferences along with accessing the current one.
- Other modes of monetizing conference format virtual events include building up a virtual exhibit hall to house all the resources a sponsor wants to distribute, offering to play a commercial or prerecorded video before or after a session, etc
- Apart from charging an entry fee and monetizing through partnerships, organizers of virtual conference format events are also often charging an additional fee for one on one engagement sessions with keynote speakers.
- The pricing structures for attendee tickets vary according to the types of organizers and the topic of the conference.
- For example, the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators or NASPA has a tiered model of pricing structure.
- For each non-member attendee, the pricing starts from US$249 per person. For US$299, each of the attendees are allowed to have one additional login.
- For US$349, the attendees get all the files on a USB flash drive.
- Collision, a major US technology conference that is expected to be virtually attended by 30,000 people later this month, charges US$109 for single tickets.
- For a three-ticket package and a five-ticket package, the organizers charge US$218 and US$327 respectively, while for six or more tickets organizers offer a customized group package.
- There are also examples of virtual conference type events where access provided for free helped to draw a bigger crowd for upselling and lead generation.
- According to the founder and CEO of CEG Worldwide John Bowen, 10% of the 2,600 participants who attended his event for free ended up purchasing packages worth US$100 each.
- It also helped him to sell coaching programs and eventually attract investors.
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