You probably already have a bunch of stuff in place to run your business… right? Whether you’re brand new or you’ve been at this business thing for a minute – you might be surprised at how much AND how little you need to have in place to run a successful summit.
We’ll run through it all and give you the entire picture of what tech you need in place to pull this summit thing off well.
The Summit Series:
Episode 144 – The 6 Steps to Take To Prepare For Your Next Virtual Summit
Episode 145 – Your Virtual Summit Speaker Search (How to start & what to avoid)
Episode 147 – The Dos and Don’ts For Your High-Converting Summit Opt-in Page
Episode 148 – Your Summit Host Engagement Plan – Our Best Tips to Keep Attendee Attention
Episode 149 – Your Post-Summit Sales Plan
Check out the entire library of list building & summit episodes here.
Listen to our specific, in-depth recommendations on
Episode 118 – The Tech We Use To Run a High-Caliber List Build (and the stuff you can skip)
Alyson Lex 0:03
Whether you love a tech stack, or you're an all-in-one fan, you have the technology already in your business. And if you don't know what all in one or tech stacks are, I'm gonna break it down. the tech stack is when you have different pieces of software that have different functions, and you connect them together with the magic of back-end technology. an all in one is when you have one program that you log into for everything that you need. Both are valid choices in your business, even if Jenny and I have our own personal preferences, and what we recommend to our clients. Here's the thing, it's not as much about the tech that you use as what you do with it. Barring some things about conversion that I'm sure we'll talk about in this episode. The whole key is how can you create the experience that you and your people need and want to have? So we're going to talk about the bare minimum essentials. And Jenny can we promise to try to be platform agnostic on this episode and not get on our soapbox is about which ones we prefer,
Jennie Wright 1:24
I promise to be platform agnostic. The only caveat that I have for any of this is if it doesn't convert, I'm not on board. That's it. That's all I want. I just want conversion. I always going to favor that. So yeah, we're going to be platform agnostic, I love that term. I think that's a really cool way to say it. We're just going to tell you what you need. You know, we've done other episodes where we tell you what we think you need, and also in the way that we work with our clients. And also in our upcoming summit product, we tell you exactly what we suggest that you use. But in this episode, we're going to give you an overview. So this is the basics. These are the essentials that you have to have to really plan and build-up plan, actually, the build-out your successful online Summit. So first of all, you need a way to organize yourself, this is going to be essential in the planning stage, you absolutely have to wait to organize yourself, organize the files, organize the expert bios, and the pictures and everything that's coming into your summit ecosystem. Because you're building out an ecosystem. Now. I could tell you what I like but yeah, whatever. So as long as you have the ability, my friends to organize this information in a way that makes sense to you and your team, have at it. Just find a way that works, and then create a process and a naming convention that works for you and your team. And that is as far as I'm going to say anything because if not, I'm going to start getting the very opinion that was so
Alyson Lex 3:03
hard for you. It's so hard. The stuff you need to organize, you need to organize documents, pictures, notes, calendars, recordings, yep. And ended the to-do list. Whatever you need to do to organize all that, we don't care. All right, the next thing that you need is a place for your experts to get their stuff. Their promo images, their swipe copy, how are you going to get that to them? How are you going to create that stuff and get it to them? That's what you need. Alright, then we're looking at the funnel. This is where Danny might just decide to stay muted so that she does not start talking about this, this is gonna be so hard for her. You need a place to build a funnel.
Jennie Wright 4:09
I'm not going to talk. I'm just not going to, I can't use a landing
Alyson Lex 4:12
page. You need an upsell page. You need a shopping cart. You need a place to hope to have your actual videos delivered. You need the pages to make that happen. There are options, builders designed to build them. I'm not talking names, builders designed to build them. Included in other software directly on your website.
Jennie Wright 4:46
We don't care. Just you need a place for all that stuff to live. The only care that we have is that it looks good. Just that's it and converts and it has to work. Like it has to work this is not the time only one side I'm so sorry. This is so, so hard for me my face is red.
Alyson Lex 5:05
We are so opinionated. And we made that promise
Jennie Wright 5:09
light-years are red, my face is red. The only thing that I have, this is the only caution that I will give you choose whatever message you want, opinionated, but do not choose a system that is not proven, right? This is not the time in my opinion. And for the sake of your Summit, to try out a piece of SaaS software that is not proven and is still in beta.
Alyson Lex 5:35
That's it. Yeah, that's all I have to say software, Jenny hates buying beta software, it's not the time to choose something that has not been used for this thing. It has not been done with this. And if at all possible. Hopefully you're listening to this episode at the beginning of your process. Get it now get familiar with it, if you don't have it already. This is not the time to learn. My I don't talk about it much because it was such a disaster. But my summit in 2013. I want I did it too fast. But I built stuff and learned on it. I learned how to build my own website. On my Summit. It was the first time I'd ever done it. It was awful, it was stressful. So whatever you choose, try not to do something new, don't do something new to the world. Don't do it new to you, or the team you don't or your team. And if you don't have it in place already. Try to get in there as early as you can see, you have time to familiarize yourself, create a little out of order. But you're gonna need a place to book some calls and some interviews. So you can do it manually. You can use calendar management software you can do but you got to figure that process out. Okay,
Jennie Wright 7:02
and you can choose whatever you want. You can go manual, or you can yeah, there are so many different ways you need somewhere to record your expert sessions. I actually just participated in a summit last week, where I did not even meet this is so hard for me to talk about. I did not even meet the host. She wanted pre-recorded sessions sent in. She just said record it and send it in. So and that made me feel weird because I mean, I want to know those people. But anyway, this is a way that people are doing things, but somewhere that you can record the expert sessions. And also hosting them is a separate piece of software most of the time. So 99% of the time, so you need somewhere to host them as well.
Alyson Lex 7:46
I'm really quick, I want to just I know we're trying to just kind of give a checklist here. But you're going off again, aren't you? That's what I'm doing today. Last year on my Summit, one of my experts and I met for the recording and we really had some connectivity issues. She was overseas and there were just some connectivity issues in her area, we weren't sure that having a video call like that would be possible. She did record hers on her own, I recorded an intro and outro. So it is doable. Even right, so I'm adding a line item into this whole thing. Have a backup plan.
Jennie Wright 8:27
Oh, and a backup plan to the backup plan.
Alyson Lex 8:29
A plan z if possible, have that many just Yeah, backup plans. As I mentioned a cart or payment processor. Earlier when I talked about the funnel that may have a way to do some tracking some affiliate links, you're going to need a way to track your promotion. And if you're offering affiliate commissions, you're going to need a way to track those commissions. There are programs shopping carts that have affiliate stuff built in. There are affiliate programs that integrate your choice, you got to have something to track at whatever level you need to track. Biggest thing
Jennie Wright 9:15
for me is having email marketing software, you need somewhere for people once they go through your landing page. We need them to be able to register. And you need somewhere for those email lists, email addresses to live legally you cannot have them in your own Gmail. Legally you cannot have them in your own outlook. They have to be on an email marketing provider. And that's just you know how it is there are a bazillion email marketing providers out there. And finding the right one is literally like finding the right pair of shoes you need to try them on. And you need to walk around in them a little bit. So this is another thing that needs to be planned ahead. Luckily for you, almost every moment Getting software out there has a free trial. As an example, I used to be with AWeber. That was my first email marketing. Actually, my first email marketing software was MailChimp. And then I went to everybody says everybody's Yeah. And then I was with AWeber for like six or seven years, and Allison was using Active Campaign. And, you know, I was an expert in AWeber, I was literally somebody that you could ask me any question about Aweber. And I had it down pat. But I moved to Active Campaign because of functionality and things like that. But what I didn't do is I didn't move to Active Campaign, a week before my summit launch. Into promo, I made sure I had an active campaign with probably about two or three months, where I could actually get to know the system and play with the system. Before I did a summit and I moved, I've specifically moved for an upcoming summit. So make sure you have enough time to play and to get to know it or your team to have enough time to get to know it and play. You don't want to add that stress. And this goes for anything that we're talking about. And Allison mentioned it earlier, but make sure you have enough time to really get to know the systems that you're going to be using so that you don't have those Oopsies. And those surprises, and those stressful moments and the oh my god, it's not working. And then you know, I've got to reach out to support Wow, there
Alyson Lex 11:12
isn't enough of those anyway. Sure,
Jennie Wright 11:14
you know, all of those things.
Alyson Lex 11:18
The last thing that I can think of is a way to create all of your promotional stuff, your documents, your graphics, write it, design it, whether it's somebody else doing it, or you're doing it, have a way to do that. Whatever that might be, is there anything on this list we're missing?
Jennie Wright 11:41
Not in the broad strokes. And this is probably one of the most I this is probably one of the most difficult episodes for me to talk to. Because I can't get into that specificity that I want to because I'm so specific. This is really hard, but we're doing it. So no, we I don't think we've really missed anything, we've been broad strokes. So if you, you know, if anything, take this as a checklist and make sure that you have the organizational piece, the place to put stuff, the registration piece, you know, the email marketing piece, the booking your interviews, piece, the hosting of your interview pieces, right? The payment processor, the affiliate system, or the tracking system, and also the promotional graphics, videos and things of that nature that these are broad strokes, my friends, but that is what covers the building side. Now, if you want to ask my opinion on any of this, I'm gladly going to give it to you. And I have given it in many episodes.
Alyson Lex 12:40
And I know that in the product that we've been talking about for this whole series, and that we're putting, you know, getting ready to launch is we're doing that breakdown of our recommendations of exactly what to get and why. And why I think it's really important. Just to note, that is we do have very strong opinions on this stuff, we do have things that we use and love and are happy with.
Jennie Wright 13:06
And it's not just arbitrary opinions of us. And they're there for a reason.
Alyson Lex 13:09
That's what I was going to say. And these opinions are based on experience with a whole lot of systems. And they these, they may have come from a conversion standpoint, they may have come from an integration standpoint, or a reliability standpoint, or even whether or not that's something that you need. So we do have a lot of opinions, but we wanted to try and just give you this super fast checklist. And I think we should probably wrap up before the so boxes come out?
Jennie Wright 13:49
Absolutely. Absolutely. All right, well with that. Use this as the checklist that it is and try and figure out what it is that you're going to use. Because these are the components that you need to cover for a successful build. cover these. Everything else is like the little bits, but these are the big ones. So make sure you cover those off. Tell us what you think about this series that we've created this summit series that we've had that for you, we still have, you know how to promote and host and post-summit interesting stuff. Like there are three more episodes to go in this series, that we're going to be able to share all the different aspects and we're going to get right I can't wait to talk about promoting like that. Why no. I mean, that's another big thing that people really struggle with. So check out the promoting episode, checking out some of the, you know, Episode 148, where we're going to talk about the hosting and then obviously, what to do after the event. That's a big thing that people don't.
Unknown Speaker 14:48
Yeah, I'm so excited for that part.
Jennie Wright 14:50
Absolutely. All right. Thanks so much for listening, everybody. We'll be back again soon with another great episode, head on over to system to thrive.com Check out all the other episodes in this series and any other ones that you love, and don't forget to leave us a comment thanks so much take care