Accepting Help With Planning a Virtual SummitOct 17, 2022
If you've just started thinking about planning a virtual summit, you're probably aware that there are many, many things that need to be done in order to get these types of events together.
With so many tasks, you might be thinking "How in the world will I be able to get all this done?"
And the answer unfortunately can be both easy and difficult at the same time...
Summit Planning Party of 1
When I first started planning a virtual summit back in 2018, I ran my first event as what I like to refer to as the Sharee Show- meaning I did just about everything myself. Literally 99% of everything to produce a 5-day virtual summit with over 3 dozen speakers- was done by 1 person.
Why did I do that?
And to be very honest, I was just not in a position to hire someone to help me figure things out, plan the event details, host the video interviews, or deal with the tech issues looming in the background.
So I had to do it all... there wasn't another option.
I just relied on my own lists of to-do items to guide me through what I knew needed to be done. And with the exception of literally asking my mother to create the social share images (in PowerPoint), I handled every single detail from start to finish.
It was a rough ride, to say the least, but I learned so much about planning virtual summits, working with speakers for digital events, and even sponsor outreach.
So while it was stressful, I fell in love with the process and kept launching new events until I had a whole system worked out that was easy to replicate. And if I'm being honest, it's the reason I'm currently in the perfect position to teach others how to plan virtual summits the right way without breaking the bank and stressing themselves out.
So let's get started-
Outsourcing For Your Virtual Summit
Hiring people who can fill in and do some of the routine tasks, design work, and event website setup is an easy way to take some of the heavy lifting out of your lap and pass it on to a team of people who can help you take care of important but time-consuming tasks.
I'm a big fan of outsourcing tasks when you're planning a virtual summit!
Who Can Help With Your Summit
- Virtual Assistant: A great virtual assistant, who can follow step-by-step instructions on loading in speaker profile information, setting up your talks, and maybe even handling support emails will go a long way for reducing your stress and allow you to focus more on your attendee experience.
- Copywriter: Hiring a copywriter to make sure the words describing your event, your goals, your speakers, and their sessions, as well as the need for paid tickets all resonate with your attendees is an incredible way to utilize your budget! A good copywriter can deliver a targeted experience from start to finish and encourage your attendees to take action on your registration page, in your emails, in your social ads, as well as on your upsell and limited-time offer pages.
- Social Media Manager: A social media manager (either new or experienced) will go to great lengths to schedule your social posts in your Speaker and Attendee Facebook Groups as well as on your business social accounts. While not a difficult job, by any means, this is super time-consuming and is one of the easiest jobs to outsource for your virtual summit. A social media manager can also help keep your attendees engaged during the event, by chatting with them on different social channels, answering questions, as well as liking and commenting on their posts.
- Graphic Designer: Hiring a graphic designer to help you create anything from a full brand for your virtual summit to just the social share images and speaker graphics is a game changer. If you have a larger budget you can hire a designer to handle all of the graphics for your virtual summit. For people with a smaller budget, you can save some cash for things like paid ads and hire a designer to just create the brand elements, like your logo, in addition to templates that can then be used by a virtual assistant.
- Paid Ads Manager: A paid ads manager takes things to the next level. Paid ads are not the easiest things to set up and they take a ton of time to learn and/or figure out what you're doing. Hiring an ads manager will allow you to focus your energy on working with your speakers and sponsors and engaging with your attendees to make sure their experience is everything they need it to be. If you have money in your event budget to hire someone to handle setting up and managing our paid ads, it will be money well spent!
Outsourcing Isn't Always Easy
I mentioned earlier that the answer was both easy and difficult, and that's mostly because if you don't already have a team of people you can lean on to help with planning a virtual summit for your business, hiring new people in the middle of such a huge undertaking can sometimes be added stress while getting things set up.
If you're thinking of planning a virtual summit and you want to outsource jobs to people like we've addressed above but don't have a current team of people to lean on, my advice is to
- Get recommendations from other business owners you know and trust. If they have people, on their teams looking for additional projects/hours this is the perfect place to look.
- Document your processes very well with video screen shares and written steps. Regardless of who you hire, it will serve you well to have the exact processes you want them to complete clearly documented as tutorials to help train them on what is expected.
Also, I would consider the option of co-hosting a virtual summit!
Co-hosting your virtual summit with someone whose brand aligns well with your virtual summit's target audience and virtual summit topic is a great option to divide and conquer! I've co-hosted many events and with each one, I felt like I could divert my attention more exclusively to the tasks that I was assigned while freeing up some mental space for self-care, family time, and just other projects!
Co-hosting is really a big decision and not one that you should take lightly. If you're interested, click here to read this post all about co-hosting a virtual summit