4 Virtual Summit Benefits That Business Leaders Shouldn’t Miss Out On

If you’re oblivious about the virtual summit benefits you can enjoy from joining these virtual events, then you’re missing out on massive gains!

Virtual summits are goldmines of opportunities.

You gain access to valuable resources, learn from industry experts, and connect with other participants to grow your professional and personal networks.     

Don’t pass up the chance to join an online summit and experience the advantages that we’ll cover in this guide. 

Virtual summit meaning: A quick overview 

Before diving into the nitty-gritty of virtual summit benefits, let’s briefly go over what it means.

A virtual summit is a collaborative event held on online channels and platforms. It includes live or recorded interviews and discussions with speakers who are usually industry experts, business leaders, and authorities in specific fields. 

Most virtual summits are similar to an online conference where panels of speakers present sets of niche or specific topics within an industry or a subject. 

These events can run for several days with live sessions for additional engagement and interaction or pre-recorded content doled out in multiple sessions per day.  

Summit vs. online conference

There is a difference between a summit and a conference.

Summits are usually independent, one-off events commonly focused on an overarching subject, and you can join and participate via invitation.  

A conference is typically a meeting with a huge number of attendees from specific organizations and industries who come together to hear speakers discuss niche or particular interest topics. 

Unlike summits, though, conference attendees primarily listen to the speakers and are less likely given a chance to join in the dialogues.

Essentially, conference attendees join the event to learn, and interactions among participants and speakers happen after the event.

(Here’s an in-depth guide about a summit vs. online conference.)

4 Virtual summit benefits

Data shows that 80% of participants join virtual events for educational purposes, with networking as the second biggest reason for attending. 

Learn some of the virtual summit benefits and why you should join this kind of event.  

1. Access great content and resources

Virtual summits provide one of the best online venues to access relevant content about a specific topic or niche. 

You’ll get reliable, well-put-together resources and learn tried and tested tips, best practices, insider strategies, and expert advice (among other things). 

With 80% of online event organizers offering on-demand virtual sessions, you’re likely to access the summit’s content after the event ends. 

The Virtual Martech Summit held on February 24 – 26 is a classic example of this.  

A library of on-demand online summit content.
Access on-demand sessions and content when available. 
Source: themartechsummit.com.

You can also learn from discussions with other participants and gain new knowledge to apply to your business situations and operations.   

Many virtual summits are free, so you get valuable content, resources, and even insights by only spending your time and energy. 

2. Grow your network

A virtual summit is a fantastic digital space to connect with other participants, business leaders, and industry experts for future collaborations. 

It is where you can put your networking hacks into play to form connections and potentially mutually beneficial professional relationships. 

If available, leverage event matching tools such as Grip. 

It offers an AI-powered networking and matchmaking feature that gives you instant event participant matches based on your areas of interests, profiles, and products. 

The platform uses machine learning to refine and improve participant matching accuracy as users engage with it and interact with its proposed profiles (or matches). 

Here’s what a sample participant profile on Grip looks like. 

A sample virtual summit participant profile on Grip.
Access on-demand sessions and content when available. 
Source: themartechsummit.com.

With this technology, you create and update your profile  and get immediate recommendations of the best virtual summit attendees to connect with. 

You won’t need to go through the event’s participant list and read each attendee’s profile to find people to add as connections to ultimately grow your network. 

Also, most virtual summit platforms offer chat and messaging features, allowing you to reach out to your networking targets and start conversations easily. 

A bigger network is one of the best things that can come out of your virtual summit participation, so implement networking hacks and be strategic in your approach to optimize your efforts. 

A solid virtual summit networking strategy can help you establish connections that contribute to your company’s growth and success. 

3. Save costs and learn from anywhere

While virtual summits take away the face-to-face experience, it does offer a more convenient way to participate in these events. 

For instance, since everything you do in the event is online, you can join the sessions from anywhere. This eliminates the hassles and time-consuming aspects of traveling to another location to attend a summit.  

It’s also easier to fit an online event around your schedule since you can easily pick and choose to join sessions you’re only interested in from the convenience of your home or office.

On the other hand, virtual summits let you sit and watch all the sessions and join all the participant discussion rooms. 

You get less of a time crunch since you can easily pop in and out of any online event areas, networking lounges, and session rooms. 

Reliable virtual summit platforms that organizers might use also include notifications features, alerting and reminding you of events and sessions you want to join. 

If the virtual summit committee uses platforms such as PheedLoop, for instance, you’ll get to access the platform’s notification center.

The feature allows you to receive real-time event announcement alerts, direct messages, and video calls so you don’t miss any sessions, connections, or chances to participate.  

Here’s where you will find the notification on the event interface. 

A sample online summit interface on PheedLoop.
Access your event notifications from the platform’s interface. 
Source: bcwwa.org.

4. Interact with and learn from industry authorities

With virtual summits, you can learn from multiple speakers, listen to industry experts, and ask questions.  

Most of these summits often offer several mini-events and sessions with many resource persons about various topics related to the event’s overarching subject.

Additionally, you get to know new industry leaders and authorities, and some of them will offer free or discounted materials of their own, such as newsletters and whitepapers.

Many online events, including an online conference, provide details of their resource persons. This allows you to reach out to the speakers after the event for other content, resources, and even services to help your business.   

This allows you to connect with industry leaders, gain expert advice, set up strategic meetings, and form professional relationships for future collaborations.  

To sum up the virtual summit benefits

Whether you’re a seasoned or newbie business owner, joining virtual summits provides tons of advantages for you and your company. 

With online summits, you get to interact with and learn from industry experts, expand your network, connect with business leaders and relevant contacts and gain access to valuable (and often free) content and resources — all from the comfort of your home or office.