14 Best Tips to Create Your Virtual Event Budget
Virtual events planning and budgeting is a complicated business. It is not that easy and same as in-person events. With virtual reality events, many things can go missing, and a whole lot of engagement happens in a completely different setup, immersive features and rich content. The new space calls for innovation and a lot of creativity. So much more happens behind the screens that the viewers & even exhibitors are unaware of. So, for such a massive event to happen, planning and budgeting your virtual event is a must. To elevate your knowledge, HexaFair presents the 14 Best Tips to Create Your Virtual Event Budget. Keep reading!
Start with Fundamentals of Virtual Event Budgeting:
- Spreadsheets are the most comprehensive tools used to frame a budget as it is quite simple to use & allows estimations and precise itemization. Google Sheets is an amazing tool where you can add, edit and update the data in real-time & share it with your relevant teams.
- Add a special detail for the content only you will be accountable for.
- Stay alert and note your deadlines as crossing them might incur late fees.
- Compare the pricing like foreseen budget v/s actual costs. This will help you remain within your budget line.
What to Include in Virtual Event Budget?
As we all know, virtual reality events are online experiences. So, every part of the experience comes with a connected cost. The first step is to figure out & note all of them. Unlike physical events, virtual event budgeting is free from expenses like catering, venues, boarding, staff, travel, cancellation etc. But, that’s for people who are not much into the game. There is much more to add on to the plate when it comes to virtual events, and that brings a huge variation in virtual events planning and budgeting structure. Exhibitors and sponsors must dig deep to explore and learn the niche involved in virtual events planning and budgeting.
Virtual Event Budget: The Support System
Every item is unique on a virtual event platform. And this is the space where you will refer for every item in your virtual event budget list. For precise estimates, it is suggested to keep your list as specific as possible. If you want to bring two elements together like the platform and registration technology, you will have to make a lot of adjustments to your numbers in the planning phase. But, in the process, this can create serious problems within the system. So, the best advice here is to remain as accurate as possible for better results.
- Item Details:
Being specific in your search is the key that you must adopt throughout the process. And to maintain that, you must include a description for every item, especially, in the case when your events need revision and approval from someone who isn’t in the circle. Some elements are absolutely important for your virtual event. To make your viewers clearly understand, you need to elaborate them in descriptive mode.
Quoting the right amount for every item in your list is also highly important. One wrong pricing is enough to quickly push you downhill. While add-ons & certain new features can take your budget high. On the other hand, cutting off the extras can make it go low. So, it is important to note all your requirements and keep on updating your budget with the appropriate amount. This will also help you to effectively frame your future virtual event planning and budgeting.
- Price Value Estimations:
Estimates help when you don’t know the exact pricing associated with every item. But having a cost bracket can help you understand the type of virtual event budget you will need.
- Actual Cost:
With this, you will learn the actual price of every item involved or given. The data including estimated v/s actual costs is considered as an invaluable source for future virtual event planning and budgeting. Keeping the data as a reference will help you to handle your future virtual events effectively.
- Be Your Own Researcher:
To make a match between your estimated & actual costs, you must do some niche research. If you already have some experience in hosting real or virtual events in the past, then you will have good insights into the concept. Apply the same here. Even if you have all the data, there is always something deep & new when it comes to research. You must keep it going!
- Explore Other Platforms:
Virtual events are all about technology. And if there is any major area in virtual events, your investment will be going into, that is technology. All you have to do is to choose the best virtual trade show platforms. Elements like venue, booth designs, features, AV, speakers etc. will be taken care of. So, it is important to do some niche groundwork before finalising your virtual trade show platform. It will help you to frame your budget effectively. Look into the features, designs, new stuff and add-ons they offer. Learn how much you have to pay for every extra feature you add. Exploring other platforms will help you identify the best virtual events platforms for your business branding.
- Talk to a Virtual Event Platform Providers:
If you are planning to host your virtual event for the first time or finding it hard to decide about which platform to choose, then approaching a virtual event production company service provider or consultants will be the right choice. As they are well experienced and equipped with all the tools and essential features, they can give you the right advice on pricing models and also guide you on how to unify several technical elements & make your virtual event a great success. Service providers can also help you to repurpose your physical events experience & costs to the virtual one.
- The Estimates:
By now, you must have gotan idea about the platforms and their costs. So, it’s time to take your virtual events to the next level, explore the line items and stay clear about your timeline. This is the phase where additional costs, marketing and all other event aspects come into the picture. Staying precise with the estimates in this phase can save the sponsors and exhibitors from costly disasters.
14 key items to consider for Virtual Event Planning and Budgeting:
- Event Recording:
The feature will help you to understand what content has been already delivered and so you can plan for some uniqueness in your next virtual event. Also, you can share the experience through recorded videos to your sponsors or new attendees.
- Small Breakout Rooms:
Recreate your virtual experience through small breakout rooms. These are the essential elements that can make your attendees interact with each other freely.
- Exhibitor & Sponsor Activations:
If you want to onboard sponsors for your virtual event,then you must handle the activations as well. Virtual event budgeting gives you the most precise detail into the data.
- Marketing Strategy Design:
It is necessary to put in the right effort to engage the audiences in pre, during, and post-event. The design plan helps you to frame the costs, ads & social media campaigns for promotions.
- Speaker Training:
Speakers are great engagers. Hiring an experienced speaker can change the face of your virtual event in a swish. Else, you have to train them from scratch.
- Time Period:
The venue, costs, features, tools, and every aspect of your virtual event depends on how long the event will last.
- Registration Platform:
In case you don’t have a registration platform for your attendees, you will need one and that comes with a price.
- Taking Responsibility:
With virtual events, there is a high chance for network & technical issues. So, saving for a rainy day is very important. Just in case if anything unexpected sabotages your virtual event, you can be well prepared. You can also
- Analyze your greatest and most volatile variable costs.
- Estimate the cancellation costs.
- Make sure your event goes as you planned.
- Budget Planning:
Get your event budgeting done as soon as possible. The quicker you can do it, the better.
- Identify your Goals:
The main aim of hosting virtual events is to identify your goals. Priority is the end-user experience. Speaker’s voice, awesome content, sponsor activations, polls etc. can be the highlights for your virtual event.
- In Detail:
The more specific you are with the details, the better. Ignoring minute details might seem small but can easily blow up your whole budget.
- Check Your Numbers:
Exhibitors often hesitate to look at the expensive features or items. And, to please sponsors or exhibitors, virtual event platforms must not look down and under-price their items or make the budget low. Balanced pricing and checking with the price list on adjacent platforms can help you in many ways.
- Emergency Fund:
Virtual event platforms are all about technology and network. Just in case, anything goes wrong, or any unexpected trouble is anticipated. Better to save for the rainy day.
Do your research on planning & budgeting for better cost estimations & right pricing.