Monetise virtual events to make it profitable with affiliates, sponsorships and more

Sanchi
• January 12, 2021
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irtual events are trending as they build a brand, grow the audience while offering options to generate revenue for the business. With virtual events, you can

  • Build your brand, community, and loyal customers.
  • Leverage the expertise of top speakers in the field and establish thought-leadership.
  • Build relationships with influencers in your industry.
  • Quickly grow the audience at an affordable cost.
  • Generate leads and improve sales conversion.
  • Establish affiliate, sponsorship or partnership allies.
  • Earn revenue and improve ROI.

How to monetise virtual events and make moolah?

There are many novel ways for planners to monetise virtual events and earn money. To keep yourself from burning your fingers, here are some proven ways that can help generate revenue for your next event. 

The goal should not be to make huge profits but to spread awareness of your company and the sponsors. Nonetheless, everyone expects some part of the turnover to come from virtual events. 

Read: How to plan a large scale engaging event

There is a range of options, from tickets and sponsorships to affiliates and partnerships, for monetising virtual events. Every option has its pros and cons, and it is entirely dependent on what works best for your business. Examine each to determine the best option for you, but always remember the primary aim of an event is to engage users by providing valuable information through good content. 

Affiliate marketing

This is one of the best ways of monetisation in 2020, sharing the risk and generating higher sales. Affiliate marketing means that you earn money for partner’s sold goods or services. This model of earning is called CPA (Cost Per Action).

Affiliates marketing is the process by which an affiliate, in our case marketer, earns a commission for marketing partner’s products/ offerings. It is one of the oldest tactics to drive sales and generate substantial online revenue. It’s a win-win for brand and affiliate marketers. The sales are tracked via affiliate links.

In a virtual event, affiliates can showcase their products or services as advertisements or pop-up links, to attract the audience and drive to action. This way, you can leverage cross-selling and up-selling opportunities in product marketing. You can also use websites like Affiliate Marketing Pro or Affiliate Program Database to find suitable programs in your niche

For instance, in a virtual product launch event of a car, you can offer a sale of related merchandise like car accessories, resulting in increased visibility and sales for the partner.

Partners

If you can find the right partners with similar objectives, then cost can be shared, and scope can be doubled. You can either incentivise partnership or share the revenue, based on the number of attendees driven through their channel. 

Plan and collaborate with partners who cater to a similar tribe. Working together for marketing and creating an event will enhance outreach by attracting more audiences. 

For instance, in a real-estate expo, you can invite real-estate companies as exhibiting partners as well as invite media partners. You can offer different levels of partnerships like lead partners, bronze partners, supporting partners depending on the support they provide and the benefits you offer in return. 

Read: How to leverage webinars to build brand loyalty

Sponsors

Sponsorship is a strategic partnership that helps brands improve their visibility and brings financial support to marketers. 

While the attendees are the heart of your event, the sponsors are the ones who make it possible. When sponsors and partners invest in your event, in return, you must promote their brand and make it a beneficiary event for them. Sponsors today are not just looking for improved brand awareness and reach, but meaningful ways to interact with the audience directly. Sponsored Ads, branded breakouts, keynote speaker opportunities, VIP pre-event networking, are some of the ways to offer value to your sponsors. 

Before the event, you need to clarify and categorise the sponsors’ packages based on different commitments, expectations, positioning, and price points.

Read: How to win and retain sponsors for your event

Ticketing

It is a direct way of monetising events. Just like in the physical events, virtual events can offer tiered tickets based on the access or interaction level to the event speaker and the content. This is a justified way to make money, yet maintain a balance. Therefore, the event can be open for all, but it can offer restricted access to exclusive sessions. 

The tickets can be categorised as first-class tickets for the view-only access, second class of tickets for those who wish to take recordings or transcripts, the third class may interact with the speaker and take part in Q&A sessions. The fourth class can be an all-access ticket, who receives all video/audio recordings of the sessions. This way the audience has a choice and flexibility, and you make money. 

Sometimes, the webinar may be planned for free for those who can attend at the prescribed time, but priced if someone wants to take a recording to re-watch it later. Another way is to offer limited-time free access to those who register with your event. Beyond those few hours, it can be monetised. 

Another bright idea is to offer membership at different pricing plans to the viewers for a set of events planned. The audience can buy an All-Access Pass, or pay the cost based on the viewing period.

There is a range of options, from tickets and sponsorships to affiliates and partnerships, for monetising virtual events. Every option has its pros and cons, and it is entirely dependent on what works best for your business.

There is a range of options, from tickets and sponsorships to affiliates and partnerships, for monetising virtual events. Every option has its pros and cons, and it is entirely dependent on what works best for your business.

Key takeaway

The benefits of virtual events are many, and revenue generation is one of the important ones. By applying the strategies listed above in your virtual event, you can make moolah with much ease. Create a revenue-generating program to boost but don’t miss out on making it a memorable experience for your attendees. 

Virtual Events & Community Building Insights
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