People love conferences. According to Eventbrite, in the UK alone, the events industry is worth some £42.3 billion, with conferences and meetings making up almost half (£19.9bn) of that total. If those figures alone aren’t impressive enough, take a look at these numbers:
- Over 1.3 million business events are held each year
- Over 85 million people attend events
- Event attendees altogether spend £6.4 billion annually on registration fees
With such a flourishing industry and high demand, it’s a shame that the average size of a conference is only 258 people. Not that getting 258 people to an event is anything to be ashamed of – far from it. There are legitimate reasons for this number, namely budget costs and venue space – catering for and providing goodie bags to 258 people isn’t cheap, nor is hiring a venue with the facilities to accommodate them all. No, it’s a shame because attendances could be so much higher.
Constraints in budget or venue might limit your conference in terms of who can physically attend but it needn’t restrict who can virtually attend.
This is where live streaming comes in.
Connecting with missed opportunities
For every person who attends your conference, there are dozens, if not hundreds at home unable to get there due to distance or cost — travel and hotels aren’t cheap. It’s not that they don’t want to be there, it’s that they can’t be there.
But that doesn’t mean they should miss out on all of the great things going on. And it doesn’t mean you should miss out on their custom and opportunity to open your brand to more and more people. When you live stream your conference, nobody misses out.
If you want an example of how successful live streaming an event can be you only need look at the annual Apple Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) which attracts thousands of physical attendees and regularly in excess of 20 million online viewers.
By showing your conference live to an online audience you can add value by allowing them to take part and engage in social conversations in real-time, even asking questions to speakers via a member of your event team.
And if a person is too busy to attend the live-streaming? They can watch the recording in their own time and at their own convenience.
So live streaming an event is great for customers, but what’s in it for you?
Reaping the rewards
At the same time as making your event available to those who wouldn’t otherwise be able to experience it, you’re being a brand of the people, you’re also making some serious business moves and opening up your brand to a larger, worldwide audience.
#1: Increased revenue
The obvious benefit of more viewers is increased revenue. While you can’t justify charging the same amount for a live stream as you do for a conference ticket, most people will be willing to pay a fee of some sort.
Charging half or even a quarter of the ticket price benefits both parties. Okay, so you’re only getting a fraction of the ticket price, but you’re also massively increasing your audience and covering your streaming costs. For customers, the fee makes perfect financial sense when weighed up against the cost of paying for travel and accommodation.
#2: Higher value sponsorship
Live streaming makes your conference a whole lot more attractive to sponsors. Increased audience means added exposure – from being seen by 250 people in a room, sponsors suddenly have the potential to be noticed by thousands. This instantly allows you to command higher sponsorship fees. Ad space can be sold in prominent positions on streaming pages so that sponsors are front-and-centre. This alone can help cover the cost of the streamed event.
#3: Marketing material
Exposure is a gift that keeps on giving. Something we do at streamGo is produce highlight reels to be used as promotional material. This is something we recommend using to your advantage in online marketing campaigns as a way to generate interest in your brand, encourage social engagement and increase post-show buys — there’s nothing like a good trailer to make you want to watch an event!
#4: Improved future events
Finally, live streaming lets you fine-tune future events for the better. Through analytics, you get to see which parts of your conference viewers were most engaged by and at which point they maybe went out to put the kettle on. Think of it like an in-person feedback questionnaire on a much larger scale.
If the demand is there, make the most of it. Live streaming your conference is a win-win, for you, your audience and your sponsors.
StreamGo are experts at delivering professional, successful live streaming and webcasting. Want to find out more about how streamGo can help you broadcast your conference to the world? Get in touch.