Odds are that in the last year you have joined a meeting online or even attended a conference online. In fact, startup Livestorm just raised $30 million in Series B funding to continue to develop its online meeting platform. If a virtual offering is not something you currently offer, it should be. So how can you create your own virtual experience for your audience? Specifically a virtual event focused on enjoying spirits!
Getting started is easier than you might think. Platforms like Facebook and Instagram make it easy to engage you’re already existing audience. Aaron Chepenik of Nevada H & C Distilling Co. is a perfect example of how being in front of your followers with quick engaging content can help drive product demand with a simple and direct approach. His @smokewagonbourbon account on Instagram posts 1-2 videos a week, each 1 to 10 minutes in length, and 1 to 2 product images a day, which has resulted in him earning over 24,000 followers in the last year!
If you are looking to replace your in-person events with a virtual audience, consider scheduled live events. Scheduled live events should be offered on a recurring and predictable schedule. The most difficult part about these larger virtual events is how you staff them. The face on the camera is important, but so is a team of people ready to reply to interact with attendees via the chat as well as help troubleshoot any technical issues. The last thing you want is your presenter responding to chat messages instead of engaging the audience with your brand message.
With virtual events, your reach is potentially larger than your on-site events. So be prepared to offer something unique for your event! Consider the following when designing your event:
- Are you offering a package? Can it be ordered ahead of time? Can it be shipped or does it need to be picked up? Is it attractive? Themed?
- Incentivize purchases within a time frame of the event
- Focus on building relationships that translate into visitors and sales
A great example of a monthly event is offering RTD high profile and limited product for tasting during the event. Customers should be able to order and pick up the product the week before the event. The event should focus on the product and your brand. Keep it lively and engaging! Everybody is burnt out on stale content, how can you be different!
While an iPhone or an Android phone is fine for quick Instagram and Facebook posts, make sure you follow these simple guidelines for your webinar:
- Use a 720p or better webcam
- Use a wired internet connection, do NOT rely on WiFi
- A body microphone is ideal. A studio microphone will also work well. Your audience needs to hear you.
- Speak to the camera! Make sure your audience can see the upper half of your body and look the camera “in the eye” while speaking
- Use a backdrop or your tasting room as the setting. Avoid virtual backgrounds that can hide portions of your video and make it difficult to bring a product into focus
- Test your setup with an internal audience first! The last thing you want to do is troubleshoot your setup with a live audience.
Here is an example list of equipment and supporting products you should consider to create an exceptional virtual tasting event!
- Light up your space: Good, Better
- Make sure they can hear you: Yeti Blue Microphone
- Make sure they can see you: Fomako HD Camera
- Make sure they remember you: BTCo customizable flight boards