I believe every course creator should run a virtual summit to sell more of their courses. But not only will an online event like this help you to market and sell your online course fast, running a virtual summit brings many more benefits to your business:
- You are being seen as an authority in your space, instantly
- You can build your email list fast
- You expand your professional network in no time
- Creating strategic partnerships in the industry becomes really easy
- You can serve people much better by bringing other experts into the mix
So let’s get this party started and let’s talk about each of these points in much more detail, so you can understand better why you should run a virtual summit yourself.
1. You are being seen as an authority in your space, instantly
Organising a virtual summit is very similar to organising a live event on the ground, offline.
If you are hosting a virtual summit, you are automatically being perceived as someone “who knows what he or she is doing”. Not only because you are the host, but also because you have interviewed a bunch of people who are speaking during your event, and you are taking in all this valuable information.
If you interview 30+ somewhat hours listening to other expert’s advice, you will not only learn many more things about the specific topic yourself, but you will be present in every single video. This means it’s a lot easier for you to establish the “know, like & trust” factor with a cold audience.
In addition to that, you are being put side by side with an entire army of experts in your chosen industry which makes you look like a leader and an authority automatically, even if you don’t know anything about the summit topic… Yes, it’s true.
That’s also one of the reasons why people take selfies with Tony Robbins, Grant Cardone, or any other “celebrities” and post it on every single sales page they have. Because it increases their status and their value in society’s eyes. It’s just like the human brain works, you can not do anything about it.
Now, you don’t have to have A-type speakers attending your summit, you will achieve these results even with “not so famous” experts in the industry.
The power of association will get you there, and a virtual summit will exhilarate this process for you.
2. You can build your email list fast
Running a virtual summit is one of the quickest ways on how you can build your email list fast, without spending a dime on ads, if you follow a collaborative marketing strategy, just like I did with Online Course Talks.
So what do I mean by this? Well, a collaborative marketing strategy works like this: you bring on speakers to your summit and you provide them with massive exposure. In return, you will ask your speakers to promote this summit to their email list.
The key here is to invite speakers who actually have an email list in the first place, and preferably a big one.
It’s basically that simple. So let’s break down some numbers.
When emails are being sent out, 3-5% of the speaker’s list click-through, between 30-40% of those who clicked convert & opt-in and become attendees of your summit.
That’s kind of how you can calculate an expected attendees number and pitch to potential sponsors as well.
One thing that is the absolute key here, and I don’t see many summit hosts doing it this way, that you don’t bring on speakers in the same industry. Because if you do, I can guarantee you, they won’t promote. Why would they? Why would they share their contacts with you as the summit host, who brings on their competitors as well? So make it fair and enjoyable for everyone, try to pick one expert in one niche and then move on to another expert who doesn’t sell the same products or services as your other speakers.
So this is one strategy on how to build up this email list.
Another way is to reinvest the raised sponsorship money as well as the money you already raised through selling “early bird all-access passes” back into paid advertising, so you can increase your sign-ups.
3. You expand your professional network in no time
I love this point specifically because running a virtual summit will provide you with opportunities you have probably never thought of. They say your network is your net worth and there really is something to it.
Many virtual summit hosts organise an online event purely for this particular reason, they want to make more connections in the industry.
The connections you make with your speakers, their recommendations on other speakers, your affiliates, your sponsors, and other companies who are getting involved are invaluable.
If you are looking for an A-type speaker, chances are, that one or the other speaker you already interviewed has a connection with this person. An introduction by a fellow “friend” will increase your chances of getting what you want nearly to 100%.
Otherwise, if you just cold email them, they will most likely not look at you as they probably receive requests like yours several times per week, or even per day, depending on how “famous” they are.
Key here is also to treat each other with respect, (of course, this goes without saying) also beyond the virtual summit. Because the summit really is only the start of a great relationship. And depending on how your interactions flow between each other and depending on if everyone sticks to deliver on their promises, this relationship can last a lifetime.
This is what you want to work towards in any industry you are in: strategic partnerships and valuable relationships.
4. Creating strategic partnerships in the industry becomes really easy
Now since we know how valuable a virtual summit can be for you to expand your professional network, it then becomes naturally really easy to form strategic partnerships.
Since you are offering a platform that provides great exposure to people, people become really interested in speaking to you in the first place. You are kind of changing position here, you don’t need to “convince” people anymore that you are a valuable contact or that you have something to bring to the table since that’s pretty clear being a virtual summit host.
I have gone into partnerships with all my speakers. They are not only advocates of the actual virtual summit itself (for which they receive a great commission for every All-Access-Pass sold), they also became an affiliate of my signature course “From Idea to Course” and will keep promoting my product even after the summit.
The possibilities of creating strategic partnerships are endless. You as the virtual summit host can also become an affiliate and promote other people’s software or products. You can sometimes even receive free lifetime access to some company’s products, should this be beneficial to you, which can save you thousands of $ .
5. You can serve people much better by bringing other experts into the mix
Last but certainly not least, if you bring a bunch of smart people in one room, the audience just benefits from it massively. Even if you are an expert in your field, you can not possibly know everything about everything.
So it just makes your virtual summit, and therefore your end product (the All-Access-Pass), much more valuable for your audience.
Every expert has a unique perspective on a specific topic, they have different experiences than you have, a different outlook on things and they may even do things differently than you do. And that is awesome. The more expert opinions your audience gets access to during your virtual summit, the better for them and your business.
With that being said, if you are looking to create an online course, OR, you have already created one, and you want to learn how to scale it, I would like to invite you to come along and be part of the largest and most impactful summit, Online Course Talks.
It’s free, you can pop in and out and get what you need at any time.
Will I see you there?