Top 5 Ways to Monetize Virtual and Hybrid Events


As more and more events are moving to virtual and hybrid, organizers are searching for ways to continue to make money on events. This task of reaching financial goals for events is a high priority for organizations right now and there are many new ways to turn on the cash flow through the virtual event component. Just like in-person events, selling tickets, sponsorship exposure, pay-per-view, exhibit booths, and advertising and event promotion all play into the financial success of the virtual or hybrid event. 

It's not just organizers for professional events that are searching for ways to monetize. Sports teams are missing out on ticket sales, bands and other entertainment groups are looking for ways to supplement lost income as well as stay connected with fans. And hosting a virtual or hybrid event offers multiple ways to monetize and streamline those transactions.

Our team came together to compile our list of the top 5 ways to monetize virtual and hybrid events.

1. Sell tickets, online access, or a virtual pass for entry to the event

ipad-Purchase-Pg-Entertainment.Never underestimate the value of your content. Take steps to ensure only your registered viewers have access to it. And selling tickets or registering attendees increases the perceived value by providing a level of exclusivity to your event content. Charging admission is also known to deliver higher attendance and higher engagement because attendees are invested in the event. Here's an example of how Steve Patrick's Top 1% brought in over $154k in online ticket sales.

At the very least, use ticket revenue to invest in valuable content. Bring in high value speakers or entertainment and create a better attendee experience. This holds true for non-profit organizations. Collect donations to a favorite charity in order to drive higher attendance to the event.

Bonus Tip: Reduce friction in the purchase process by selling tickets directly from your website. Don’t make your buyers work too hard. A seamless purchase process on your own site always converts to more ticket sales.


2. Sell sponsorship packages

Beyond ticket sales, event sponsorship packages are the most widely used methods of monetizing events. In these tough times, sponsors are seeking for new and unique ways to engage with prospects and virtual events are a great way to gain exposure to targeted audiences.


Plus, sponsorship in the virtual world delivers value long after the event is over. Unlike a physical event, where sponsors shell out large sums of cash to sponsor an event that takes place over a few days, digital provides extended exposure long after the event ends.

There are many ways to integrate sponsorship into the digital environment, including logo placement, video spots, banners, sponsored sessions, sponsor profiles and speaker slots. Create different levels of sponsorship packages to target specific audiences and to fit a variety of budgets.

It’s likely you, and your sponsors share audience overlap. Encourage them to cross-promote the event to their own audience. Make it worth the effort. Provide a unique sponsor link to your registration page and pay them a referral incentive for each attendee that purchases tickets through their link. Get creative and pitch meaningful exposure opportunities for premium sponsors.

Bonus Tip: Pitch exclusive exposure to your attendees through a digital swag bag that sponsors can use for special offers or discounts to registered attendees.

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3. Sell exclusive replay access to sessions

sell-replay-access-to-sessionsEngaging with your audience doesn’t have to end with your event. Connect year-round with your community by selling on-demand access to individual sessions through a digital library of your event content. You’ll build awareness of the event and capture a new qualified audience to market the next event.

Bonus Tip: Offer extended exposure for sponsors post-event through branded viewers or a quick video spot before playback. Be sure to capture audience data, number of views and viewer firmographics – use this info to sell sponsorship packages for future events.


4. Sell merchandise or supplemental products

Your attendees are your captive audience, presenting an optimal opportunity to sell ancillary items. Capitalize on this prime moment to cross-sell a trial offer, downloadable content, books or even relevant merchandise like t-shirts or mugs.

Bonus Tip: Optimize sales with a day-of-show discount!


5. Create value add-on experiences

hybrid-374074Optimize event revenue by selling exclusive access to Q&A sessions or workshops with key speakers. Sell raffle tickets to exclusive meet and greet sessions with industry experts or celebrities. The key is to identify upsell opportunities that your audience will find valuable to create relevant experiences that financially supplement the event.

Bonus Tip: Expand your reach. Create affiliate links for your speakers to promote their sessions to their social media audiences – offer a referral incentive on those tickets sold.

Final thoughts

Before considering monetizing, organizers first need to ensure they are providing value to the attendees. Whether the purpose of the event is to provide education, an entertainment experience, or bring a group together to collaborate – delivering on attendee objectives is essential to the event’s success. And virtual event technology presents new ways for organizations to engage their audience, build their brand and create new revenue streams.


Recommended Read: Translating in-person events into virtual environments is a big challenge for event organizers. Check out our top 10 tips for planning virtual and hybrid events.


About ViewStub

ViewStub is a virtual and hybrid event platform that makes it easy for event organizers to sell tickets to live events or sell access to pre-recorded sessions right from their website. ViewStub‘s all-in-one platform offers ticketing, registration, video streaming and new revenue opportunities for creators seeking to monetize their content and grow their community.