With the launch of the new Party Plan Divas Message Boards and Chat Room there has been a lot of talk about Online Parties and how to have a Successful Online Show. There are many benefits to both the Consultant and the Hostess for an event like this, and Online Parties can be run at any time, from any where, with just a few days notice. Read below to learn how to utilize and maximize Online Parties with your Home Party Plan Business!
Why have an Online Party?
Online parties are beneficial and convenient for both the Party Plan Consultant AND the Party Plan Hostess. For starters, a Hostess will not have to really “Host” anything – meaning no pressure to clean the house, get a baby sitter, cook hors d’oeuvres, etc. A Hostess can earn the same free rewards without having to do quiet as much of the “work.”
Likewise, the Party Plan Consultant can do the party from the comfort of her own home, opening up endless opportunities for long distance parties, multiple simultaneous parties, and more. In fact, with an Online Party, you have the option to have a Hostess or not – you can “Hostess” your own party just as easily.
Organizing Your Online Party
- Invite people just a few days before the party and send a reminder. Unlike the In-Home Party, an Online Party is much more easily forgotten. Do not invite too soon!
- Invite EVERYONE from your Address Book. With an Online Party there is no reason not to invite everyone you know – regardless of location, time zone, etc. Everyone can take advantage of an Online Party.
- Use all of your Social Media outlets to advertise your event. Post on Facebook, Tweet about the event, put a link on your blog or website, put your event on open forums and message boards – the sky is the limit!
- Run the party for 6-12 hours. This will cover all time zones! Consider running specials in different blocks of time as well. (example: free shipping on orders from 8-10am CST, 10% off from 12-2pm CST, etc)
- Reward people for Referrals. Consider giving discounts to anyone who invites someone you do not know to your Online Party! You can use tools such as www.evite.com to send and track your invitations.
- When you close out your party, send EVERYONE a Thank you email (whether they attended or not) with a coupon to use at a later time.
Online Party Games
Games are fun at any party – even an Online Party! Play two or three parties during your event to increase participation. Offer “real” gifts such as add-on products, travel size products, etc. Games should involve looking at your website or shopping cart, in order to encourage guests to look at as many products as possible. Games such as a “Word Scramble” (where you scramble the name of a product and give a gift to the person who can unscramble it first) or an “Online Scavenger Hunt” (give a list of 5-10 products and the first guest who can give you the url to all of them wins) are fun, no pressure ideas to encourage your attendees to peruse the site.
A few more quick tips
- Create more excitement around your party by planning it around a New Product Launch, Holiday Shopping Extravaganza, or other special occasion.
- Put a spin on “Mystery Hostess” parties with Online Parties – randomly choose one purchasing attendee to be awarded the Hostess Rewards from the entire party!
- Repeat your website URL, ordering instructions, and incentives several times during the party and for any late arrivals. Make sure guests understand shipping charges and expected shipping date. If you are keeping the party open for several days or longer after the online party, make sure your clients understand that and know when they can expect to receive their products.
- From InternetBasedMoms.com : Grace Under Pressure – Be prepared for possible problems and handle them calmly and effectively. What will you do if you start having computer problems in the middle of your party? How will you answer a guest who keeps asking off topic questions? Or what if there’s a disruptive intruder or someone starts promoting sales of her products? Be as graceful as possible when handling such issues. If your computer is making participation nearly impossible, ask for email addresses and email everyone an apology and a discount coupon. Confrontation with rude and disruptive intruders will only escalate the problem and make your other guests uncomfortable. Most chat rooms have an ignore feature that you can instruct guests to use for the disruptive intruders. Offer to contact someone by email after the party for off topic discussions. And ask the person who is promoting her products to wait until the end of the party and invite anyone who is interested to stay for a few minutes.
- And finally, as with anything we do in our Home Party Plan Business - FOLLOW UP! Keep in touch with everyone who came, ordered, played games, or just “hung out” for a little while. If they were interested enough to come visit, they are interested enough to become a client.
Online Parties are a great way to add to your monthly volume, reach new Customers, and meet new potential Hostesses and Recruits. Done well, you can make a significant impact on your Home Party Plan Business – without ever leaving home!