If there’s one thing that can really motivate and inspire your sales team, it’s a sales kickoff event. It’s the one annual opportunity you have to get your team of rockstars together, energize them, and outline your killer strategy for the next year.
Of course, in year’s past, your sales kickoff event was likely in-person. But now (if you’re anything like us) you need to figure out a way to get things done virtually.
Here’s everything you need to know about hosting an incredible virtual sales kickoff event, and how to make sure it still is valuable and inspiring to your team, no matter where they’re located.
What’s a Sales Kickoff Event?
Let’s start with the basics: what exactly is a sales kickoff event? It’s your yearly meeting when you get your revenue generating team together, celebrate your wins from the previous year, and outline the vision and strategy for the year ahead.
Sales kickoff events typically happen in January, and the goal is to get everyone amped up for the year ahead, and on the same page.
This event can be a big to-do, and might even span multiple days. From the welcome breakfast to the closing remarks, a lot of planning and effort can go into a sales kickoff event.
And ultimately, it all pays off when your sales team is revved up and ready to go for the year to come.
Why a Sales Kickoff is Ultra Important
We all have been to the dreaded meeting-that-definitely-could-have-been-an-email. Is a sales kickoff event one of those? We say absolutely not. In fact, they’re quite the opposite.
While yes, maybe the basic information from a sales kickoff event could have been relayed in an email, that’s not really the main point of this gathering.
The main point of a sales kickoff event is to truly energize your people, and get them engaged, unified, and celebrating. You’d be hard-pressed to get your team really feeling all of that over some long email email.
Your sales kickoff event is the one time a year to truly get your sales team aligned, and because of that, it can ultimately be one of the most important moments for your revenue generating team.
How Sales Kickoff Events Have Changed (Along With Everything Else)
We might be stating the obvious, but sales kickoff events have changed drastically in the past two years, with just about everything else in the work-related universe. With remote and virtual teams, comes the need for virtual sales kickoff events.
Instead of getting everyone together in a conference room, going through a robust in-person agenda that includes meals, updates, contents, training, and breakout sessions, you need to come up with a virtual solution.
And while this might seem like a big undertaking, we’ve got you covered.
How to Host the Best Virtual Sales Kickoff Event
Hosting the best virtual sales kickoff event possible shouldn’t just look like a bunch of back-to-back video conferences. You can still create an interesting, engaging, and straight up fun event for your people. Here’s how:
- Sweeten the deal: One of the main reasons why sales staff tend to dig kickoff meetings is because they get a lot out of it – starting with freebies. From free meals to company swag, they walk away feeling like they were appreciated.
- In order to have your virtual sales kickoff event mimic the in-person events of year’s past, make sure you’re still going that extra mile to give your people what they deserve.
- Send a swag bag to their house (but instruct them not to open it until the event), and give them gift cards for food and drinks (we always recommend using Hoppier for our virtual events).
- Arrange speakers and sessions: Virtual sales kickoff events should still be as juicy as their in-person counterparts, so develop an itinerary with speakers and sessions.
- Virtual sessions can include “Year-in-Review,” a Marketing Update, and a Product Update. You can also plan training sessions, so your team has the opportunity to do some hands-on learning during the event.
- Focus on the fun: As we mentioned, if a virtual sales kickoff event is only back-to-back video calls, it’s going to probably seem like a drag for everyone, from your sales team to leadership.
- Instead, make sure that you’re integrating some virtual team building activities into the mix, and make sure they’re actually fun. Pssst…. That’s where we here at Kabloom come into play. (More on that later)
- Create networking and communication opportunities: Virtual sales kickoff events are an excellent way for your people to network, and to open up lines of communication with team members they haven’t spoken to so much in the past.
- This is incredibly important in the age of remote work, when some of your team members may have never actually met each other in person.
- Try setting up a virtual “speed date” session, where your team members get to chat with each other at random. And make sure there’s a chat where everyone can drop their contact info and exchange social media handles.
Did Someone Say Something About FUN?
When we said focus on the fun, did we pique your interest? The problem is, when it comes to virtual sales kickoff events, just running through some average presentations might lead to a snoozefest.
In order to make your virtual sales kickoff truly enjoyable for everyone, you should call in some virtual team building experts, who know exactly how to get a group of virtual teammates to celebrate.
So allow us to toot our own horn for a second, and introduce ourselves. Here at Kabloom, our virtual Party in a Box is designed for this exact purpose, and it’s the perfect thing to supplement your virtual sales kickoff event.
Instead of just going through the motions to get your virtual event underway, plan time in the schedule for a virtual party with Kabloom.
Here’s how it goes down: our virtual Party in a Box is a festival-style online party, where everyone gets the chance to choose their own adventure. We’ll have different facilitators running a variety of incredibly fun and engaging themed rooms, so everyone can do something they enjoy.
You’ll get to design the entire experience with your own Virtual Experiences Specialist, plus you’ll get a custom webpage with the schedule, activity descriptions, and room links. And when it’s time to party, you’ll have an expertly facilitated company party, where everyone feels connected and inspired.
We consider ourselves something of virtual party professionals, and we’ve really boiled it down to a fail-proof formula. Trust us on this one.
So go ahead, step it up for this year’s virtual sales kickoff event. Give your team the chance to get their creativity flowing with a Graffiti Workshop, or become the mixologist they always dreamed of in the DIY Cocktail Class. They’ll be belting out their favorite songs in the Karaoke Club (sorry neighbors), and will be wowed by a truly dazzling Magic Show. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg.
Interested in learning more? Schedule a demo with our team to see what it’s like working with Kabloom.