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9 Best Practices for Livestreaming Your Sales Kickoff

Sales rep participates in live, virtual sales kickoff

Innovative senior sales leaders need to be able to prioritize the impact and ROI of their sales kickoffs, while energizing their distributed sales teams with a high-quality presentation. But with traditional sales kickoffs becoming increasingly outdated, what’s the solution?

In The 7 Biggest Pitfalls of Traditional Sales Kickoffs, we outlined the issues most companies run into when planning their annual SKOs. Here, we’ll explain why more sales organizations are choosing to broadcast their kickoffs in lieu of traditional in-person events, and lay out best practices for executing a seamless, livestreamed sales kickoff.

Why are innovative companies livestreaming their SKOs?

For starters, it’s far more cost-effective to not have to pay for the hotels, airfare, meals, etc. for your entire sales organization. Your sales reps don’t have to give up critical selling days to travel to and from the kickoff. Companies are able to engage with more reps throughout, using interactive tools and gamification. Presentations are recorded and can be viewed post-event, giving your reps the ability to review meaningful clips and optimize content retention. And with less overhead, events can be planned and executed on a more regular basis, getting reps up to speed on new products and services as soon as they're released.

If you’re looking for ways to open up your budget and increase the productivity of your sales organization, here is our list of best practices when livestreaming your next SKO:

Best practices for livestreaming your sales kickoff

1. Create and post relevant video content before your event begins.
Posting advance video content or teasers allows you to set the stage for your SKO, and is a great way to get your reps energized ahead of time. Plus, the more information you can give your reps upfront, the less content you have to deliver during the actual kickoff, which opens up some breathing room for more interactivity & Q&A.

2. Keep your agenda and content aligned with your kickoff objectives.
When you broadcast a virtual SKO, your sales reps can’t simply follow the pack from event to event. Putting together a clear, concise agenda with easy-to-follow links and session information is critical for keeping your reps engaged throughout. When it comes to the content, go with a theme that directly relates to your sales organization’s objectives, and stay loyal to it throughout your event. Feature sales leaders who you know will motivate, top performers whose successful strategies need to be shared, and even clients who can shed an important light on the customer journey.
3. Be intentional when engaging your sales reps.
Holding your company’s kickoff or meeting online actually increases your ability to interact with more of your reps. Encourage them to submit questions and comments via the chat feed, which the on-screen presenter can view and respond to. Moderators can respond to any questions and comments that don’t make it on air, and all participants can chat with one another as well. Plus, don’t forget to leave room for Q&A. With the amount of information you’re providing, it’s important to leave room for clarification.
4. Make it interesting with gamification.
Keep your reps engaged by incorporating gamification directly onto the event page. Have them fill out polls in real time to collect answers quickly, or include quizzes that you can incentivize. Incentivization can be anything, and for any reason: coupon codes for those who stay the entire time, a gift card to the rep who leaves the most comments in the chat feed, etc. By creating an interactive experience for your reps, not only are you able to get an immediate snapshot of their knowledge base, but it gives them an additional reason to stay focused.
5. Focus on the sales reps, not new products or services.
Products and services change all the time, and should be part of a more regular training curriculum. Rather than cutting into valuable time with specific product details and updates, you should be holding monthly, livestreamed product and service updates for your sales team. A kickoff, on the other hand, should be about skills training and motivating your employees. What success stories can be shared and learned from? What sort of goals should they be working toward? What are common problems that your reps are experiencing, and how can they be addressed? Make it clear from the get go that you are enabling your reps to be successful, and deliver on that promise.
6. Post all relevant materials to the event page.
Feature your slide decks and marketing materials on the event page below the video player, for your reps to access while they watch live presentations. You can also include relevant links in scrollable tabs, complete with images & descriptions. Offering supplemental content makes it possible to deliver more information to your reps, plus it’s more inclusive of different learning styles.
7. Don’t skip the breakout sessions.
Breakout sessions are valuable, and you shouldn’t have to give them up simply because your kickoff is remote. Break your sales reps into groups in advance (maybe by territory, vertical, or whatever makes sense for your sales org), and send each group a link to their own breakout session. Have a presenter and moderator running each one to get the comments flowing!
8. Reinforce SKO content by making it viewable on-demand.
According to this State of Sales Kickoff Meetings report, 75% of kickoff presentations are not recorded or made available to view afterwards. This is a huge miss, but since you’re already broadcasting the presentations to an event page, most of the work is done; simply make the page available for your sales reps to view even after the event has ended. From here, we recommend breaking up the content into more digestible snippets, and compiling everything into an event-specific library for easy, post-event access. Now, the content you worked hard to curate will remain impactful well beyond your kickoff or meeting.
9. Ditch the annual kickoff, and hold them quarterly instead.
80% or more of the info reps receive from a sales kickoff will not be retained without reinforcement - and when you wait an entire year between major sales events, you give up an opportunity to provide your reps with the peer examples, updated materials, and leadership insights that will help them succeed in the short term. Good sales kickoffs can be incredibly impactful, so why not keep the momentum high throughout the year and hold them at the start of each new quarter? By freeing up time and resources with a livestreamed event, you’ve already removed some of the biggest barriers that limit your company to one kickoff per year. Not to mention that new hires from April shouldn’t have to wait until January for that valuable experience!


Need help preparing for and executing your next annual sales kickoff or national sales meeting? Request more info today!
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