The Show Went On
By Mark Murphy
October 31, 2012 11:45 PM
For anyone who doubts the value of virtual events, let me point to Exhibit A this week: Hurricane Sandy. Despite a massive hurricane that has devastated a huge part of the Northeast, which just happens to be where our company is located, we put on a custom event tied to the brand new travel agency website solution, AgentStudio.
Despite the devastation by Sandy, the show went on and more than 360 travel agents attended it. They also did so on Tuesday, the day we were still feeling much of the aftermath of the storm. Many of these agents were located in the tri-state area and felt the impact, but still managed to make it to the show. A larger number came from all over the country and spent up to four hours learning how to boost their business.
Had this been a physical event it would never have come to be. Indeed, just last week I was in Atlantic City to give a keynote presentation at a home-based travel agent show. Had the show been this week, instead of last week, it never would have gone on. As they say, “timing is everything.” The producers of that show certainly dodged one here, but weather, transportation and time all add up to affect our ability to be in certain places at certain times, regardless of how great an event might be.
When you run an event online you never have to worry about these occurrences affecting your location, since that location is literally distributed across hundreds, and in some cases, thousands of travel agent screens. Some agents who registered for our event never made it due to power outages and other issues, but the show went on regardless. Did they miss it entirely? Not at all since the show can now be accessed on demand.
Later this week, as more and more towns in our area get back online, we’ll send an email to the other 400 registered agents who weren’t able to make it. We’ll also invite those agents who might have missed the original invite. Ultimately, more than 800 travel agents will visit this particular event and learn how to become better at marketing and selling travel.
They’ll learn about social media and explore the many different workshops and seminars that are available. They include an Introduction to Social Media (101), Social Media Strategies (102) and Leveraging Your Website and Social Media (103). There are also five additional workshops that cover everything from how to customize a website to how to blog. So our show did indeed go on…and continues to do so as you read this. Visit AgentStudio and click on the banner to attend this informative, and free, online expo!
Mark Murphy is president and CEO of travAlliancemedia, parent of TravelPulse.com, Agent@Home magazine, Vacation Agent magazine, Travel Agent Academy, Virtual Travel Events and Agent Studio.