It has become increasingly difficult and more often than not impossible to organize any kind of professional event. This pandemic has brought about a major shift in how we go about our private and professional lives and one of the measures that were introduced from the onset was to limit the number of participants in various events or to ban their presence altogether. Luckily, businesses don’t have to suffer more because of this change. Namely, they are lucky to be able to rely on modern technology for help.
Virtual events are springing up like mushrooms. They have become the new normal, with all their advantages and disadvantages. However, the transition from planning a physical to organizing a virtual event has left many organizers and companies frustrated. Needless to say, virtual events do require a certain type of attention and include elements that might not be of great importance to regular events. To help you and your company make the most of such an event, we’ve prepared the following list of tips you should consider.
Know your audience
Unlike traditional events, which didn’t require the audience to be particularly tech-savvy, online events rely on them being familiar at least with the basic options provided by the platform you’ll be using and the internet in general. If you’re not planning to have a lot of people attending the event you’re organizing, you might want to conduct a survey and see what platform your audience is most comfortable with. If that’s not an option, just choose one that seems to be the easiest to use. A less familiar piece of software might well cause people to feel frustrated, which could ruin everybody’s overall experience. Alternatively, you could consider hiring experts who know how tricky the management of virtual events is and can provide a solution that is suitable for a wide range of events and which includes a full production crew, properly cued presenters, as well as presentation and live broadcast graphics controlled remotely.
Those who used to organize traditional conferences know just how difficult it is to create the right settings. Online conferences aren’t much different, since they too should create a unique experience that makes the event more meaningful to the audience. If, for example, you’re hosting a webinar, your landing page is the stage for your webinar marketing agenda, which is why it has to be easy to understand. That will help you convert interested visitors into webinar registrants. Carefully choose the fonts, color contrast and captions for your presentations. If you’re unsure about what to do, hire a designer to help you create a personalized theme that will captivate the audience’s minds.
Your choice of the speaker should depend on your overall event strategy. It could be someone from the management, an outstanding employee, a business partner, or even an influencer knowledgeable about the subject and what your company does. Make sure the person you select speaks clearly and is comfortable in front of the camera. Also, they should have the ability to manage time effectively. Sometimes, it’s a good idea to have two hosts, but they should have a strong rapport and know how to respond and manage the audience in a smart way.
Promoting the event
No matter how well you’ve planned your online event unless it is promoted properly, you won’t attract the audience you are hoping for. In order to organize your advertising campaign, you need to think about the unique selling point you’ll be offering. It could be anything from your guest speaker to skill-sharing opportunities or networking. Use all the suitable social media sites to share event details and make sure all the people on your mailing list know about the event. Paid ads are also a good way of promoting your conference/webinar.
Dealing with technical issues
Virtual events are prone to various glitches. That’s why you should check if everything is running properly before the event. You need a fast and stable internet connection and so does your host (if they are hosting the event from a remote location). Also, prepare a backup of your slide deck and every needful document in case you miss any, or it gets corrupt. An extensive trial before the event is a must so that you can identify potential problems and work out the solutions. Ideally, you should arrange tech support online for your upcoming event, so that everyone can ask for help and get it immediately.
Make your audience engaged
In order to make this happen, you first need to create opportunities for them to respond. Encourage them to ask questions in the comments section or chat boxes and make sure they get their answers. The more succinct and up-to-the-point the answers are, the more interaction there will be. However, the interaction doesn’t not only refer to Qs and As. You could also encourage the attendees to live-tweet or take part in polls and quizzes so that you can focus on the main event. Ideally, you should have one person who would be in charge of handling this activity.
Choose the date carefully
You need to make sure that your event doesn’t collide with some other occasion that might attract some of the people interested in your event, especially if you’re aiming for a global event. If it’s a small-scale event, you might ask the audience about a suitable date. That would definitely increase the number of attendees since people would feel privileged to be asked such questions. Even when you find a suitable time and date, there will be people who won’t be able to attend the event. That’s why you should have a recording of the event available on your website. It would also serve as a great advertising tool for all future events.
If you follow these tips, your online event will stand much better chances of being successful and because we’re likely to rely on them in the future as well, we recommend you give them the attention they deserve.