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May 30, 2021
Event Tips

5 Ideas to Boost Sponsor ROI at Your Next Hybrid Event

5 Ideas to Boost Sponsor ROI at Your Next Hybrid Event

Hybrid events are a lot like the wild west: a new frontier, full of promise, unpredictable, plagued by gun-toting cowboys ... okay, maybe not that last one. But hybrid event formats are a relatively new development in the event world, which can lead to lots of uncertainty, especially when it comes to snagging corporate sponsors. With so many moving parts, how can you guarantee that your hybrid event will deliver worthwhile ROI? How can you lasso the unique power of hybrid events to create new sponsorship opportunities?

Don’t be afraid of the unknown! Hybrid event formats present double the sponsorship possibilities. Across on-site and online events, there are myriad ways to show off your sponsors. Live streams, networking sessions, apps, programming blocks: hybrid events have your sponsors covered at every turn. And with 72% of corporate sponsors looking to get involved with hybrid events, now’s the ideal time to perfect your sponsorship strategy.

In this post, we share five tips to maximize your sponsors’ ROI and, in turn, increase your revenue.

1. Keep your hybrid event active year-round

There are endless choices when it comes to hybrid event formats (we recently shared 4). You could host your meeting virtually and in-person at the same time; you could put on a trade show on-site one weekend and online the next. With the boundless opportunities that hybrid event formats present comes the chance for sponsors to reach a larger audience for a longer period of time.

To maximize sponsor ROI, a smart hybrid format is to host your event in-person and make the event’s content available virtually year-round.

Taking recorded sessions and panels and including them in your content library gives sponsors more bang for their buck. When your event no longer takes place over an exclusive few days and is instead available for anyone to access year-round, sponsors have a semi-permanent spot to advertise to prospective customers.

Besides simply extending the length of time that sponsors have at your event, keeping your event active year-round with virtual content ensures a much larger audience and recurring revenue for you. First, you have the opportunity to reach guests at the in-person side of your event; next, your sponsors can target live stream viewers; and after the fact, sponsors stay relevant and continue to generate leads when your event content is made available online. Guarantee your sponsors a larger lead pool by choosing a hybrid format that makes them a fixture for your attendees.

2. Host sponsored virtual sessions leading up to your hybrid event

Now that event management platforms are primed for hybrid formats, you can create buzz around your event by hosting sponsored virtual sessions in the weeks leading up to your hybrid experience. This is a unique sponsorship opportunity that, like keeping your content available year-round, extends sponsors’ reach while also getting the word out about your event.

Sponsored sessions could look like online Q&As, product demos or virtual networking events before your participants turn out in-person for the real deal. Sponsors can host one of these buzz-generating events, put their name on a specific block of programming or even sponsor the apps you use to engage your guests over the course of an event. Hybrid events mean new ways to get sponsors involved, so starting your event early with sponsored sessions guarantees a boost to their ROI.

As for your revenue, hosting sponsored virtual sessions leading up to your event builds excitement (and at a fraction of the price of in-person events).

Get people talking about the main event by connecting virtual and in-person audiences beforehand with an event management platform, like PheedLoop, that makes streaming and networking super simple. Sponsored sessions are the perfect way to encourage prospective attendees to register for the amazing in-person experience you’ll be hyping up during your virtual events!

3. Create lower-cost sponsorship opportunities

After a tough financial year, companies are looking for new sponsorship opportunities that will assure reach and ROI without breaking the bank. With 65% of corporate sponsors planning to reallocate live event budgets towards virtual and hybrid event sponsorship, now is the perfect time to eliminate barriers to entry by creating lower-cost opportunities for sponsors to get involved with your event.

By creating sponsorship opportunities that target the virtual component of your hybrid event, you present a huge bargain for your sponsors. They spend less while still reaching a wide audience.

There are tons of ways sponsors can show out for the virtual components of a hybrid event: sponsoring select virtual sessions, putting their name on the in-person event’s live stream, running polls or Q&As for online audiences, having corporate personnel engage with attendees in breakout sessions. With a hybrid event format, you can really tailor your sponsorship strategy with specific options for your virtual component and your in-person experience. Make it easy for sponsors to get in on your hybrid event -- they’ll see real ROI as a result.

Eliminating barriers to entry for sponsors benefits you, too. With sponsorship options that cover virtual events, in-person events or the whole hybrid, you open up your event to so many new sponsorship opportunities. Consider taking a chance on emerging corporate sponsors by creating lower-cost virtual sponsorship tiers; this will help you create connections with companies you can foster long-term relationships with for your future hybrid events.

4. Choose an event management platform that makes your sponsors the star

With the wide array of options for virtual and in-person sponsorship that hybrid events present, you need a robust event management platform that lets you get super specific. You don’t just want a platform that offers lots of sponsorship options, but look for a platform that allows you to differentiate between online and on-site sponsors for a seamless experience. Ideally, invest in a platform and company that has years of experience running in-person events, like PheedLoop, and not one that has repackaged virtual event features as hybrid or in-person ones, as there are many platforms out there that do this today.

Event management platforms that specialize in hybrid event management will maximize sponsorship exposure and ROI. Choose a platform with at least 20 to 30 discrete ways to promote sponsors: session pre-roll videos, branded push notifications, virtual banners, sponsored social media feeds.

When sponsors know you’re working with a smart platform that provides them with extensive opportunities to promote their brand, they’ll have the peace of mind that your hybrid event will deliver worthwhile ROI.

A good event management platform will also let you customize the appearance of your sponsorship placements. Make sure your sponsors are front and center by uploading custom logos, colors and adjusting image position (for example, PheedLoop even has the option to use customized stream backgrounds, to really elevate your sponsors). Putting the effort into customizing your imagery will boost exposure and keep your sponsors top of mind during your event.

5. Invest in event analytics to prove sponsor ROI

Besides customizable sponsorship placements, a great event management platform will help you demonstrate real ROI with advanced analytics capabilities. Back in the good old days of solely in-person events, it was difficult to track how many “impressions” or views a sponsor’s pamphlet, banner or swag bag got. But with hybrid events that make virtual sponsorship spots available, an event management platform can deliver data that proves ROI.

With data reporting like PheedLoop’s SmartSight analytics system, you can pinpoint which events and sponsorship placements are actually returning on investment. You and your sponsors can use this data to create a bespoke sponsorship plan that will reach a wide audience with measurable outcomes.

That’s one of the advantages of hybrid events: virtual components lead to more trackable data lead to a boost in your sponsors’ ROI in a way in-person events never can. So go for the best of both worlds!

An event management platform with superior analytics tools gives you the ability to demonstrate your events’ worth to potential sponsors. With new virtual sponsorship opportunities, you and your team have the chance to prove that you’re a worthwhile investment with hard data instead of speculation. Demonstrate ROI, impress future sponsors and seal the deal with the help of data analytics via an event management platform like PheedLoop.

Conclusion

Hybrid event formats work to your advantage when it comes to corporate sponsors. Online, in-person, both: a hybrid event presents endless ways to put your sponsors in the spotlight and boost your revenue. With the inclusion of virtual experiences, you can guarantee ROI by reaching vast, global audiences, building a sponsored content library, and fostering relationships with new corporate sponsors at a lower cost. Remember to use a hard-working event management platform to include your sponsors in your event every step of the way, and leverage your data to prove ROI over time.

Hybrid events are the new frontier. Boost your sponsors’ ROI and your revenue by tailoring your sponsorship strategy and investing in a hybrid-equipped event management platform.

Need an event management platform that lets you take control of your sponsorship strategy? Check out PheedLoop.

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PheedLoop is an all-in-one event management platform for live, virtual and hybrid events. Our platform powers events for associations, corporations, agencies, educational institutions and governments worldwide including Shopify, Government of Canada, American Society of Mechanical Engineers, IBM and more. We commit ourselves to being a highly product focused company, and are dedicated to releasing new features and product updates every week since our founding in 2015. We post regular updates like this one to our blog.

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