If you have a virtual or hybrid event on the horizon, one of the top challenges you’ll face is finding ways to get the best possible engagement from your audience. When people are watching a conference online instead of physically sitting in the same room as each presenter and strolling through exhibit booths, you may need to give them an extra reason to get involved.
That’s why so many event coordinators are using gamification. There are plenty of ways to allow attendees to earn points throughout the conference, and it works best if you have fantastic prizes to give away to the winners. But what prizes work well for virtual and hybrid events, considering that some of your attendees may live far away?
There are more ways to get creative with your prizes than you might think. Try these virtual event gift ideas.
This is likely the most common gift for any virtual setting, but that’s because it’s a win-win. For you, it’s as simple as purchasing an online gift card and putting in the winner’s email address. For the winner, it’s a fun way to treat themselves to anything they choose. You could opt for a very broad gift card that could be used at several businesses or, better yet, you could get discounted gift cards from your event sponsors’ or partners’ businesses.
Give away the opportunity to attend an exclusive event, like a personal meet and greet with the head of your organization or lunch with your event’s keynote speaker. This might be easier for attendees who are local, but a virtual meet and greet could still be a great honor.
If you have a high budget for a major prize, an all-expenses-paid trip is always a crowd-pleaser. Give the winner a choice of select destinations or choose a specific destination and pay for their transportation, accommodations, and other expenses.
Online courses have been thriving since the start of the COVID-19 (and they weren’t exactly unheard of before the pandemic either), so today there are plenty of highly valuable courses available. Give away an access code to a popular online course to your winner.
Monthly gift boxes are incredibly popular, and you can find subscription boxes for nearly any hobby or interest. Give away subscriptions for a select number of months for a box of teas from around the world or a box of exotic snacks and chocolates, for example. It’s best to pick a box that nearly anyone would enjoy unless you give your winner several boxes to choose from.
Does your organization have a great social media following…or do you have a connection with someone who does? Depending on your audience, a social media shout-out could be an exciting and profitable gift. For example, if you’re throwing a conference for business owners, a social media post from you plugging their business can be a great opportunity.
Think about your audience – is there a particular type of software or online tool that they may love to have? Maybe it’s an online tool that helps them improve their businesses or it’s more of a fun-focused platform. Regardless, think about options that may appeal to them and give these away as prizes.
If your online event or hybrid event is a type of learning experience like a conference, you certainly have experts in your organization and there are attendees who would love to pick their brains. Give away free private consultations at your event. For instance, if your event is a human resources conference, offer one-on-one consultation with the head of your organization or another prominent member of the HR industry who can give the winning attendee some fantastic pointers.
Assuming that your event goes well, you’ll probably have plenty of other events in the future. Those events can serve as prizes. You could give away tickets to your next conference, for example, or offer a free upgrade from a standard ticket to a VIP ticket.
Some prizes can be sentimental rather than material. As one of your prizes, you could offer to make a donation in the winner’s name to a specific charity. This could be especially popular if the charity is related to the purpose of your event. For example, for a conference about diabetes management, you could donate to the American Diabetes Association.
Your virtual event or hybrid event has the potential to be a real hit with your target audience if you plan it well, and you can boost your chances with great prizes or gifts for your attendees. If you haven’t yet decided what virtual platform you’ll use to host your event seamlessly, learn more about the Canapii event management platform today.