Virtual Sales Kickoff

Everything You Need to Know About Virtual Sales Kickoff

Akshay Birje
• April 26, 2024

(10 min read)

A Sales Kickoff is a tried-and-tested formula, which has now gained global adoption, among companies of all sizes. From really small companies that host one-two session as part of their SKO to multinational companies and their elaborately planned week-long SKOs, there are many ways to get this done.

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After all, what’s not to love about being in the company of your team members, and the leadership, discussing strategies to win more deals in the upcoming year, and engaging in some fun team-building activities, while at it! 

Traditionally, sales kickoffs take place in person, where the entire sales team gathers from different locations and spends a day or two at the chosen venue to go about the set agenda. 

However, the modern and, arguably, more efficient approach is to host a virtual sales kickoff. Think of it like an SKO, only everything happens online, which means more convenience, more flexibility, fewer resources involved, and definitely, fewer expenses!

In this guide, we discuss everything you need to know about virtual sales kickoffs – what it means and involves, the benefits, some best practices to host successful virtual kickoffs and more. 

What is a Virtual Sales Kickoff?What is a Virtual Sales Kickoff

A virtual sales kickoff, much like a typical SKO, is an annual meeting where the sales team gathers to discuss new sales strategies for a company in the coming year – only here, everything takes place online. 

Virtual sales kickoff meetings typically last one or two days, but can go up to a week, and they take place in the first few weeks of the year, most often in January or February.

Benefits of Holding a Virtual Sales KickoffBenefits of Holding a Virtual Sales Kickoff

Virtual sales kickoffs have become popular in 2024 as they offer amazing benefits to the company, over traditional ones. Let’s explore a few of these benefits: 

  • Cost-effectiveness: Cost-effectiveness

Hosting a virtual sales kickoff event is less expensive than organizing an in-person one. It requires less effort to plan and launch an entire meeting.

Compared to physical meetings, an online event saves significant amounts of time and money on factors like travel costs, meals, venue rental, catering, and other set-up expenses.

  • Flexibility: Flexibility

An online sales kickoff meeting allows participants to join the event from anywhere. Management and sales team members can attend the session at their convenience, from their homes or offices. 

Companies will get flexible control of the event platform, they can manage and run the meeting, as per their requirements. They can also have interactive sessions like live polls, question and answer sessions, and more depending on their needs.

  • Scalability: Scalability

Virtual events have been designed for larger-scale gatherings. They can handle a huge number of attendees without any kind of limitations. Companies can easily scale up or down the event size based on the number of participants. 

  • Productivity: Productivity

Virtual sales kickoff increases productivity and team morale by saving a lot of time on event planning, meeting venue arrangements, and travel logistics. All this will allow the participants as well as the organizers to focus on the more business-critical aspects of the meeting as much as possible. 

An efficient virtual event platform allows companies to have engaging and informative sales kickoffs. But, more on that, later. 

  • Content Reusability:Content Reusability

Video conferencing platforms allow you to store and record kickoff meeting content which you can use in the future. After the event, participants can revisit the sessions, and presentation slides and note down key concepts of them. This will promote continuous learning and greatly improve knowledge retention.

The content presented at the kickoff can be repurposed as training materials. Companies don’t need to waste time on recreating fresh content. They can keep their key topics and material accessible all the time. 

  • Build Unity: Build Unity

Virtual sales kickoff gatherings help team members align with the company’s goals and strategies. Businesses can share their success stories, give inspirational speeches, hold team-building activities, and show a unique sales pitch through a video meeting platform.

Best Practices to Host a Virtual Sales Kickoff in 2024Best Practices to Host a Virtual Sales Kickoff in 2024

A successful virtual sales kickoff needs precise and careful planning and proper execution. To conduct an effective and informative kickoff meeting, you will need to put in some time and effort. 

Here we have listed some time-tested practices for you to host an impactful virtual sales kickoff:

  • Define the Goal of SKO: First of all, you must define the goal of your virtual sales kickoff meeting. It means you have to decide what you want to achieve from this event like sharing new sales strategies, providing updates on the product, or training the team on revised sales pitches, etc.

Once you clearly define your objective, it will be easy for you to take the next steps.

  • Set an SKO Budget: After defining the virtual sales kickoff goal, set the event budget. Organizing any event costs money, whether it is online or offline. So, decide how much money you are willing to spend on organizing an event. 

Initially, you have to look at important expenses like online event platforms, promotional activities, training materials, and more. Write down all expenses involved in the hosting of the SKO, so you know how much your overall cost comes up to vis s vis your budget.  

  • Plan Virtual Sales Kickoff Agenda: Once you have the virtual SKO goals and budget, create the agenda for the meeting. Also, choose a theme that is relevant to the event goal and resonates with the virtual sales team. You will need a comprehensive schedule for your sales kickoff event to be successful.

Outline your agenda with informative sessions, networking opportunities, interactive conversations, team-building activities, and more. This will assist you keep your attendees engaged at the event. In the end, review the sales kickoff schedule to make sure you have not missed any important details.

  • Select an Appropriate Platform: Picking the right platform is very important to execute your virtual sales kickoff event smoothly and effectively. There are multiple virtual event platforms available in the market, but choose the one that best suits your needs. 

Ensure the platform you choose is user-friendly, easy to use, and has 24/7 customer support & interactive features to engage your audience. 

Read More: 18 Factors to Consider Before Picking a Virtual Event Platform

  • Craft Your Training Materials: After choosing a virtual event platform, start creating the training content that is required for the event. Use visuals, infographics, and simple fonts to design the material.

Break down the information to make it easier to digest. Once you are done with crafting event content, make sure it is ready to go.

  • Invite Your Audience: Once your training content is ready, you are free to invite your team members to the event. Since SKOs typically only involve internal employees, create a personal invitation and be on-brand with your company culture. 

Include all important details about the event in the invitation so that your participants are aware of everything and have the right expectations. 

  • Test Virtual SKO Meeting: Schedule and conduct a test event with senior sales staff of the company. Make sure to familiarize yourself with the virtual event platform’s functionalities. 

Assess all features of the platform, such as screen sharing options and interactive tools (quiz and live polls), etc and ensure that they are working properly. 

Doing so will ensure you can provide your attendees with a seamless virtual experience on the day of the event.

  • Host a Fantastic Virtual Sales Kickoff: On the event day, start the meeting with a welcome video to capture participants’ attention. Remind your attendees of the event theme or agenda. 

Engage them by utilizing the platform’s interactive features like polling, quizzes, and more. Allow team members to network with peers. Also, encourage them to ask questions and share their experiences. 

  • Follow-up after the Event: Once the virtual sales kickoffs meeting has ended, assess its effectiveness. Send a follow-up feedback survey form to your team. 

Share the major points, slides, and key takeaways from the meetings via email. Plus, highlight any important decisions or the key takeaways of the meeting. 

A sample of the Virtual Sales Kickoff Meeting Agenda




Agenda Topic

Day 1

9.00 AM to 9.15 AM

Welcome/ Introduction


9.15 AM to 9.45 AM

Market Trends & Company Vision


9.45 AM to 10.15 AM

Product Updates


10.15 AM to 10.45 AM

Sales Strategy


10.45.AM to 11.00 AM

Virtual Coffee or Tea Break


11.00 AM to 11.30 AM

Interactive Session (Q&A)


11.30 AM to 11.45 AM

Networking Session


11.45 AM to 12.00 PM

Summary of Key Points


Day 2 

9.00 AM to 9.15 AM

Overview of Day 1


9.15 AM to 9.45 AM

Motivational Speech


9.45 AM to 10.30 AM

Sales Training


10.30 AM to 10.45 AM

Break Time


10.45 AM to 11.00 AM

Breakout Rooms


11.00 AM to 11.30 AM

Team Recognition and Celebration


11.30 AM to 12.00 PM

Summary of Key Takeaways and Actionable Steps

16 Innovative Virtual Sales Kickoff Ideas to Make Your Virtual Kickoff Meeting AwesomeInnovative Virtual Sales Kickoff Ideas

Virtual events have gained immense popularity today, but they also come with some challenges. One of the common challenges you can face is “audience engagement”. 

If you fail to keep your audience engaged, the goal of your meeting will remain unachieved. That is why you need to take a fresh approach to make your virtual sales kickoff meeting interesting and engaging. 

By leveraging virtual sales team-building activities, you can provide a rich experience to your attendees.

We have come up with some innovative sales kickoff ideas that you can use to make your meeting extra fun and engaging.

1) Virtual Happy Hour: Virtual happy hours have currently become a trend for interacting, collaborating, and celebrating milestones virtually with team members. 

Allow your sales team to have a short virtual party with their own drinks and beverages. This unique approach will make your employees feel relaxed and chill out in an online environment.

2) Award Ceremony: You have to acknowledge and appreciate your team’s work if you want them to stay energized and inspired. Hold an award ceremony session where you reward them for their hard work.

While giving awards to your employees, elaborate on their contributions. Give an overview of their efforts and achievements. Honor them with trophies, medals, or prize money.

3) Virtual Escape Room: An escape room is a team-building activity where teams work together to solve a range of unique puzzles to escape from a virtual room. This game is full of adventures. Within a timeframe, employees have to complete the task or challenges. 

Some classic virtual escape room games are Grimm Escape, Mystery Escape Room, Brain Chase, and YouEscape. Offer your sales teams a unique way to socialize virtually and have a thrilling experience.

Adding this game to your online sales kickoffs meeting will engage your audience significantly and ensure that everyone has tons of fun! 

4) Trivia: Trivia games are board games that ask players questions about interesting topics to test their knowledge. You can prepare questions about various topics, including general knowledge, work-related questions, and more. By offering the winner some gifts, you can increase the excitement even further.

Add trivia questions to spice up your online sales kickoff meeting and have a blast. Trivia games will keep everyone entertained by having a friendly competition between your employees. Some of the popular trivia games are TriviaMaker, Crowdpurr, Quizbreaker, and Sporcle Party

5) Costume Competition: You must have seen the costume contest in a physical setting. It is as entertaining to watch as it is to participate,  right? This is what you can now include in an online world. 

Allow team members to dress up in creative outfits to show on the screen. Give away a variety of prizes and reward the one who dresses the best. 

6) Desk Decorating Contest: Select a theme and ask your employees to decorate their workspace. Then allow them to share photos of decorated desks in online settings. This is a great activity for remote teams to show off their creativity. 

Get the other team members to vote for the decorations. In the end,  award the one who put together the best decoration and received the most votes.

7) Two Truths and a Lie: This is a super engaging and hilarious game to play. Each participant shares three statements about themselves, two of them should be true and one, false. Now, the other participants will have to guess which of the three statements is false. 

This creative game will help participants know interesting facts about each other. 

8) Murder Mystery Game: This is a highly engaging game where a player has to investigate and solve a mystery. The goal of the murder mystery game is to find the suspect.

You can customize the game as per your team’s needs like theme, game duration, and difficulty level.  This game will increase their curiosity and also improve their problem-solving abilities.

9) Sales Pitch Competition: This activity is a great way to get the salespeople together. Have a small competition of sales pitches amongst the team members. Make your sales leader or manager judge of this healthy competition, where the team comes up with a fresh idea or pitch to sell a specific product.

Further, give everyone two or three minutes to explain their idea. Once everyone has had their turn, deliberate and pick the winner!

10) Guessing Game: Get some time off from your meeting to play an entertaining guessing game. Create a list of real or fictional characters, such as celebrities, leaders, or professionals in your field. Split the employees into groups and tell the teams to guess the character. Playfully, this game will promote teamwork and collaboration. 

11) Casual Q&A Time: To make your participants comfortable during a meeting, have an informal talk or Q&A session with them. Having a casual conversation can help build stronger relationships between team members. Ask simple questions like “What is your hobby?”, “Which is your favorite book?”, “What did you learn from the last project?” and “Which is the most memorable place you have ever visited?”

12) Pictionary: Pictionary is a word-guessing game where one player identifies words from pictures drawn by other players. This game will massively enhance the creativity and imagination of your team members. There are many online pictionary games available, such as Skribbl, Draw Copy,, Drawsaurus, and Quick Draw

The rules of playing Online Pictionary will be similar to traditional Pictionary games, one player will draw a word or phrase and the other players will identify what was drawn within a time limit.

13) Picture Sharing: Picture-sharing activities are an innovative approach for team members to engage online. It can spark conversation among teammates. You can tell your sales team to share their pictures like personal photos (family photo, childhood picture), favorite vacations, pet pictures, and more. Sharing their personal moments can make team members build trust, especially in remote or hybrid team environments.  

14) Virtual Bingo: Virtual bingo is a most loved game that offers a superior digital gaming experience for remote teams. Many online platforms provide a variety of bingo games and tournaments for players to have fun with. One of them is Cyber Bingo which is known for its user-friendly interface and extensive range of amazing bingo games. Apart from that, you can look for other platforms such as Blackout Bingo, Speed Bingo, and 30-ball Bingo

15) Virtual Coworker Feud: Like a family feud, a virtual coworker feud is an icebreaker activity where team members guess the correct answer to the questions. This team-building exercise can help your corporate sales force become more cohesive. You can customize the survey questions, and break out your teams to play this super fun game. Gather your employees to get involved in a Modern Feud-style game show that involves high-energy action. 

16) Mario Kart Tour: The most loveable game “Mario” which is known for bringing excitement to players of all ages. Mario Kart Tour is an awesome virtual team-building game to play with fellow participants. By incorporating this game into online meetings, your team members can enjoy a friendly round of races. Plus, it will help improve group problem-solving and leadership skills of individuals. 

What are the Challenges of Hosting a Virtual Sales Kickoff (SKO)? How to Overcome Them?Challenges of Hosting a Virtual Sales Kickoff

Virtual Sales Kickoff (SKO) presents many challenges but with careful planning, you can easily meet and overcome those challenges. Let’s take a look at the challenges you might face while conducting an online sales kickoff meeting with their effective solutions.

  • Insufficient Audience Engagement: Engaging participants in virtual events is not as easy as it sounds. This is one of the biggest challenges for every organization. 

In a physical meeting, all participants are present in person, hence there is no question of distractions. But when people attend virtual events from their homes or offices, they can easily get distracted by things like phone calls, e-mail pop-ups, and household tasks.


According to this report, 49% of marketers believe audience engagement is the most important factor in a successful event. To keep attendees interested and engaged in the event, incorporate some sales meeting activities like idea-sharing meets, icebreaker games, quizzes, polls, breakout sessions, and brainstorming sessions. 

Also, allow attendees to network with other attendees to give them a feel of in-person interaction.

  • Technical Issues: Virtual events are completely dependent on technology. Participants cannot join a meeting without using computers and mobile devices. 

During live events, you can face connectivity issues, screen sharing issues, audio or video glitches, login issues, and more. These glitches will surely disrupt the event’s flow and hinder attendees’ experience.


To avoid technical glitches in live events, test all the equipment beforehand. Conduct a test run to know whether all the capabilities of the platform are working properly. This will help you identify and address any potential issues in advance. 

  • Lack of Personal Connection: Hosting virtual events lacks the personal touch because attendees are unable to communicate face-to-face like they can at in-person gatherings. 

Body language and facial expressions play an important role in understanding and connecting with participants. These are absent in the virtual program.


If you want to give your participants the same experience as in-person meetings, encourage them to use video chat. Also, encourage attendees to turn on their cameras to participate in discussions. 

When the meeting begins, set up a welcome video or a short recorded video snippet to add a personal touch with your audience.

  • Motivation & Energy: In a virtual setting, it is tough to keep attendees motivated and excited all the time. Online events are convenient for attending meetings, but they can lack the enthusiasm that one might experience while in person. 

Viewing the screen for long periods can be stressful. This will significantly reduce people’s energy levels.


Invite motivational speakers to the event. Listening to their speeches will encourage people to stay engaged. Ensure that the certified speaking professional has a deep understanding of audience engagement techniques. 

Also, recognize and celebrate employees’ past achievements. It will help boost their morale. During longer meetings, make sure to include short breaks. Having a quick break can help your meeting attendees maintain their concentration and energy throughout the event.

  • Security and Data Protection: Since virtual events rely entirely on technology, it is essential to prevent data leaks. Any information that is shown or shared in the meeting, must remain secure and safe. 

If the platform is not secure enough, hackers can quickly gain access to your virtual event software and get access to private data and confidential information. 


Prioritize data security. Choose a platform with robust security features like encryption, multi-factor authentication, and access controls. Educate attendees about cybersecurity best practices and remind them to be cautious about clicking on suspicious links or downloading any file.


Virtual sales kickoff meetings (Virtual SKO) are a great option for companies to gather their people in an online setting for goal setting, strategizing, and team building. 

It not only educates their sales department about product updates but also gives them a networking opportunity. Compared to in-person events, virtual ones are less costly, and the most popular way to host a large gathering. 

By incorporating best practices to host your virtual sales kickoff, you can encourage your employees to perform well and also increase the growth of your business. 

A successful sales kickoff will improve team morale and productivity. Leveraging virtual event technology platforms can greatly align your marketing employees with the company’s goals.


Virtual sales kickoff meetings are held entirely online using video conferencing software. Sales professionals come together remotely to set priorities and discuss the company’s future sales strategies and goals. On the other hand, an in-person sales kickoff meeting is a physical gathering where the salespeople share product updates and new sales plans face-to-face.

A virtual sales kickoff meeting is a cost-effective solution for companies. You can plan and host an amazing event for your sales teams, at a fraction of the cost, when compared to traditional in-person kickoffs. Plus, it boosts engagement, and collaboration among team members. Implementing effective plans can help you build skilled sales staff and drive your business onward. Overall, virtual sales kickoff meetings will align your sales team toward common goals.

Your virtual sales kickoff meeting needs a theme that will encourage, motivate, and inspire your sales team to perform their best in the company. You can consider sales kickoff themes including “we will achieve”, “the future is now”, “level up”, “customer satisfaction first” and “think big”.

Sales representatives require a range of skills to be successful in their roles such as active listening skills, strong communication skills, good product knowledge, excellent sales presentation skills, negotiation talent, relationship building, and time management. All of these are skills a salesperson must have to build a strong relationship with clients, understand their needs, and effectively convey the value of products or services.

Airmeet is a perfect platform for a virtual sales kickoff meeting, thanks to its extensive features that deliver a great online meeting experience. The platform is widely regarded for its nuanced engagement features, powerful analytics, and excellent customer support. Airmeet provides a superior experience as it supports high-definition audio and video resolution which is quite important to enhance the quality of online sales kickoff events.

Your digital sales kickoff is the only annual gathering of the entire year for the team, so there are some crucial factors you should consider such as a virtual-first experience to effectively engage attendees, clearly outline the goals and objectives of the sales kickoff, and well-crafted virtual sales kickoff agenda. 

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