Streaming Events – Good Idea Or Waste of Money?

As the moderator for the live broadcast of jvAlert Live in Las Vegas in 2008, I had the pleasure of meeting a lot of people I would never had met before. In fact, my Twitter following increased by close to 600 in the span of one week because of the event.More and more events are being streamed, and lots of event planners are seriously looking at the pros and cons of streaming an event. After all, they are trying to fill seats to cover their costs. If profit is a motive (in most cases, it is) then the case against streaming is that it will detract from event ticket sales. Not only that, but when a speaker is offering a package for sale, people watching online either cannot afford it or do not have a means to purchase it.So should you stream your event?When you want to get good information out to the world, streaming is a great idea. I offer that it should not always be free to watch. After all, you are charging your attendees a good amount of coin to sit in that seat, why should someone watch the event without paying? What message are you giving to the audience? “You can pay me $600 for the ticket, another $800 in airfare and hotel while this guy online can get the same information for no charge.”Speakers have been weighing in on this as well, as they don’t like to show people who have no way of purchasing their coaching what they are selling at events, because most speakers will offer way more than they do on their own website to the attendees at events. So if speakers are not happy about displaying their wares to the public at large, what is an event planner to do?My recommendation is to stream the event, but charge an admission fee to access the live event, and offer an upsell to give access to the recordings for a period of 2 weeks following the event. Depending on the price of the event, you can choose to offer the live streaming access for $20 – $50 and the recorded access for $30 – $100 with a discount that can be applied to the DVD set for those who choose to prepurchase at that time.By offering access in such a way, the value of your event is preserved, your profits are increased and you are not compromising the sales of your DVD sets after the event. You are also telling your attendees that they are getting the best value, because they get to attend the event, access to the speakers and the networking that the people who are paying to watch online do not get.As far as the offer that they make for the attendees, speakers can create a lower priced package in the $50 to $200 price range that they can record a short video to present on the sales page. With a script like Rapid Action Profits, you can have a way for online attendees to purchase products from the speakers, and the sales page can be set up in a few minutes during the event. The video sales message would be an explanation of the package and a call to action.I have found that products in the lower price ranges have done better in the events I broadcast, but other events have had great results with full priced packages. It is a good idea to test different price points to see which converts best for you.What do you need for a good broadcast? More than one camera is a good idea, because different angles make for a better view. If you are recording the event for a DVD, the camera you are using should be the one you use for the streaming, too if you can attach that camera to your broadcast laptop without messing up your DVD recording. You should also use a lavalier microphone that you can add into the broadcast audio as well, through a mixing board.With the above considerations, your next event can be one that includes an audience at home and a happy audience in the hotel, while still making money from the online crowd. Putting on an event should please the most people, including your bank account. So make your next event count and broadcast it live!

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