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Building your brand through Virtual Trade Shows
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Building your brand through Virtual Trade Shows


From the presentation made at American Business Media’s Trade Show Summit 2006 on February 22, 2006, New York City

From the presentation made at American Business Media’s Trade Show Summit 2006 on February 22, 2006, New York City

Published in Business , Technology
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  • 1. building your brand through online events presentation by Ramesh Sambasivan,, Inc. [email_address] at American Business Media’s Trade Show Summit 2006 February 22, 2006, New York City
  • 2. what is an online event
    • It is an environment on or via the Internet
        • that comes alive for a limited duration
        • connects users instantly
        • in one-on-one, one-to-many, or many-to-many interactions
        • disbands itself before interest wanes
        • leaving them wanting more
        • leaving them with enough value to want more
  • 3. it’s not just about technology
    • It is about knowing your users
        • reality-check: does it make sense?
        • timing: are they ready for it?
        • blind-spot: are you looking to improve visibility?
        • expansion: are you casting the net wider?
        • structure: who will attend / who will exhibit
        • bundling: how does it go with other offerings?
        • pricing: giving them value for money
  • 4. paving the way for success
    • Setting the stage for success and buy-in of online event offerings is critical
        • baby steps: isolate inefficiencies of in-person environment and aim for online event to fix them
        • stretch ’em: address the infrequency of in-person events, aim for online event to stretch the length of an event brand
        • inseparability: bundle the on-site and on-line versions as an inseparable package; they complement and complete one another
        • long term view: allow for users to design a marketing strategy with the combined offering; avoid half-hearted attempts.
  • 5. exercise caution, embrace change
    • In building a brand with an online event
        • avoid in-your-face marketing, information overload
        • make all media site-navigation geared to build your brand
        • focus on quality rather than quantity of traffic
        • use technology for metrics, feedback mechanisms
        • combining a virtual exhibit hall with a real-world event creates compelling value
        • beware of getting distracted by technology or gimmicks
        • don’t forget to provide entertainment value
  • 6. keep it simple, show-manager
    • Simplifying an online event allows for greater focus on brand-building
        • use of simple visual tutorials for all users
        • offering self-administered tools
        • creating intuitive flows between online event and other media properties
        • take into consideration the system restrictions of corporate users
        • remember, time is your end-users’ most valuable resource.
  • 7. challenges
    • Overcoming the challenges to marketing your online event include
        • making it feel ‘real’ even though it is virtual
        • you never forget to board the plane to Vegas, do you?
        • keyboard-phobia
        • setting expectations at the right level
        • standardization & staying the course past the learning curve
  • 8. trends
    • There is nothing so powerful as an idea whose time has come. - Victor Hugo
        • globalization of your brand occurs whether you want it or not,
        • new emerging markets present new opportunities
        • changing demographics: your customer’s newest recruit most likely grew up partially in virtual space
        • personalization tools: creating a common denominator for diverse users, transcending language and cultural barriers
        • online matchmaking in personal life has become commonplace
        • online events facilitate pre-screening and connections, while in-person events build trust, loyalties and lasting bonds.