Personally, I hate service-oriented websites and online products that require you fill out a form to talk to a sales droid just to get some idea of how expensive their products or services are. But how am I going to give you a price for your event?
The Short Version
I encourage you to read through the event descriptions below. But for those of you that just want to get to the bottom line, here’s a quick look at what you can expect. Keep in mind these prices generally include all planning and discussion meetings, registration setup and management through Eventbrite, practice sessions with presenters, and more.
- A full day event: $1,000
- A half day event: $500
- A 2-3 hour event: $350
- A short event, about an hour: $200
- No planning, no recording, no registration, just show up for an hour and be the Zoom Host: $100 an hour
This is only a guide! Contact me to discuss your situation – I’ve done them for less, and more.
The event must meet certain criteria: be Zoom-only, online only (no hybrids), single track (no concurrent sessions, though short breakout sessions are acceptable), and more.
For multiple consecutive days, you can generally multiply the one-day cost by the number of days.
Low, Low Prices!
I’ll start by telling you this: full-service event facilitation isn’t “cheap” by most people’s standards. But you probably won’t find a lower price from any other online event facilitator. I’ll give you an idea about pricing of other events I’ve done here, as long as you realize that your price could be higher or lower depending on a wide variety of things.
One Afternoon Session + Planning – $300-$400
This project was a one-afternoon webinar – just a couple of hours sitting behind my computer, monitoring a Zoom session, right? No, this session was a special induction ceremony for a professional honor society. Three separate custom slide decks were prepared for presenting 40+ inductees – who joined the webinar as “panelists” – to an audience of family and friends who had the option of viewing the webinar as Zoom “attendees”. I provided background music based on the client’s input – legally licensed music that can be shown on YouTube without “copyright strikes”. There were multiple planning sessions and numerous emails with the clients, and a one hour “practice session”.
This client wanted to use their own Zoom account – which I generally recommend – but they had no experience in acquiring the Webinar add-on to their Meeting-only account. I discussed a number of options with them and met with the account owner over a Zoom Meeting to help her through the purchase process.
Three Weekday Nights – $1,000-$1,500
My first big-meeting Webinar client was back in October of 2020, and was a huge success – for me and the client! I had been brought on in a few months earlier to help manage and improve their website, and as the pandemic droned on, they made the decision to go “virtual” and reached out to me for some assistance. I’d facilitated many Zoom Meetings, and participated in a number of Zoom Webinars as an attendee, but this was the first facilitation I’d do of a webinar.
This event also required attendee registration and payment of a small fee. The client told me they usually charge between $35 and $50 per person for their in-person annual events, which would alternate locations around the state of Arizona. Attendees from around the state would generally drive in the day before, spend the night in the hotel of the event, pay extra to attend a pre-event dinner, and drive back home after the event, held typically on Saturday in the fall. Attendees who were not local to the event would normally pay hundreds of dollars out of pocket for travel, lodging, and dining – on top of the per-person registration fee.
So for the online event, we agreed on a $10 registration fee per Zoom attendee. This meant several people could get together and watch from the same computer for just $10. I set up registration on Eventbrite, and we waited to see how registration would go. The client was concerned that registration might go a little over their usual in-person attendance of 90-100 people, which would require upgrading their Zoom Webinar add-on from a 100-participant license to the 500-participant license. But we were all were blown away when the final registration count was over 340 attendees, from all over the US – but also included attendees from Canada and Australia!
The event structure was 3 nights, 2 hours each night, with four 30-minute educational/technical presentations each night – mostly. There was a brief introductory session from the Society’s president, followed by the Keynote Session which was 45 minutes, and an “all chapter introduction” at the end, where a representative of each of the local chapters spoke briefly about the upcoming activities.
I held three separate practice sessions with presenters and the Society’s own moderator, necessary because many of the presenters were not comfortable with screen-sharing in the Zoom application, and some of the participants lived in rural areas where the Internet speeds are slow. All sessions were recorded, in the Zoom Cloud and on a local computer, then edited and uploaded to the Society’s YouTube channel in a custom playlist.
As my first Zoom Webinar client, I gave them a great deal on the first event. We’re in the planning stage for their 2021 event now, while I’ll still give them a good deal (as an ongoing web client), the “list price” for a similar event is in the $1,200 to $1,500 range.
Six Full Days – $2,500-$4,500
This was my most challenging event: 6 days straight, 5 to 10 hours each day. I was initially hired just to be “Zoom technical support” during the event, but the event producers quickly realized I was going to help them far more than just that! It’s what I do: Event. Success. Productions.
We had a couple of practice sessions, to accommodate the busy schedules of the presenters: nurses! And with 30 minutes per session for most of them, the length of this event brought many presenters. I’d say less than half attended practice sessions, resulting in the need to guide many of them live during the event in starting screen sharing. This is where I got many positive post-event comments – ready to assist at any time, calm and friendly tone, clear instructions.
This client did not really want any recordings produced, since this was a paid educational event and putting all (or significant part of) the material online for free viewing was a disservice to the paying attendees, and there were no plans to create a viewing paywall for post-event revenue. Still, I recorded a couple of sessions, and offered after the event to edit and upload one as an example for future registrants about what they’re likely to see.
My initial offer for “just technical support” for 6 days was $2,500, and the client graciously provided a “bonus” payment after the event, asking with their thanks for all the assistance.
You might ask “Why more than $500 per day just for technical support?” I’m up front with all my clients: it’s just me, and I generally won’t take on such a long event. But if the client presents themselves as professional and friendly, I’m willing to adjust my schedule (and my family’s schedule) in order to accommodate the longer event duration.
The event producers strategically changed their event style from their prior in-person events. Like many in-person educational events, a large audience attends a keynote presentation, and afterward there are several concurrent break out sessions – you could only be physically present at one! For their online event, they chose to present all break out sessions serially, one after the other. While this accounted for the long duration of the entire event, paying attendees could attend any and all sessions! This was of great benefit to all the attendees, based in the post-event survey comments. I won’t do parallel sessions for a client because I’m just one guy – but now I’ve got good anecdotal evidence that your attendees don’t want to have to pick one session over the other: they want the option to attend all of them!
One final point. I asked the event producers after the event, “What other prices did you get from other vendors to facilitate your event?” They said they received a proposal from a company that wanted to use their item platform (not Zoom) which had many additional bells and whistles, including “social rooms” where people could visit and chat in between events. Their proposed price: $18,000.
Note: As of September 2021, I’ve done two more multi-day events for this client, and there have been two additional events for new clients from attendees at this client’s event.
You’ve Got Options!
Many event facilitators have a cookie cutter approach to meeting your needs that is dependent on using their custom (expensive) software platform (that your attendees will have to learn hire to navigate) and have a large support staff (all of whom have to be paid). I’m not discouraging you from checking out other resources for your event, but I’m happy to have a two-way dialog and see if I can provide what you need at a reasonable price.
In the Works: A Hybrid Event
I’m working with a client on a hybrid event for Spring 2022. They’re having an event at a hotel in New York, and had the hotel get a quote from their “preferred vendor” to do the event facilitation for a hybrid meeting, with full participation by online-only Zoom attendees. After receiving a quote way out of their price range (over $50,000!), they came to me for “advice.” I told them up front: I’m not facilitating a hybrid meeting outside of the Phoenix area.
But I did mention that I would be interested in collaborating with an on-site crew, and take their audio and video feed into my “control center” and facilitate the Zoom event. I mentioned that many churches have an excellent audio-video crew, plus equipment, and that if they could locate one willing to take on their event, I’d work with them. Turns out one of the organization’s board members has a relative that manages a church production crew, and we’re now (September 2021) in the planning stage. It’s likely that this three and a half day hybrid event can be done for under $15,000 – well under the original quoted cost from the venue. And I bet we’ll do a better job, too.
Bottom line: I’ll discuss your event with you, even if I don’t think I can do your event. You won’t know what I can help you with if you don’t ask.