Virtual events are booming! The health crisis has strongly encouraged companies to get started.
Online events are the new trend : conference, trade fair, forum, seminar, team building ... Before you get started, here's everything you need to know about virtual events.
All events are possible !
Online shows, webinars, conferences, workshops, demos, games, team building... All your events are now virtually convertible thanks to the many recently developed platforms. Your creativity is the only limit !
The advantages and limits of virtual events
The virtual event is currently the best ally of seminars, trade shows and other professional meetings because, as its name suggests: it’s virtual!
- Social distancing is respected
- No place to rent, no hostesses, no logistics… Virtual events are money saving
- Virtual events make you stand out from your competitors by giving the image of a modern, agile and state-of-the-art company.
- It makes data collection a piece of cake. Each piece of participants’ information will feed your customer database.
- It is eco-friendly. No travel, no stand to build, no food to provide and no waste… Unlike classic events, virtual events have a much lighter carbon footprint. Your CSR manager will thank you.
- It will expand your audience! Anyone in the world will be able to attend your event.
- Larger audiences and lower costs make the virtual event very profitable and offer a higher ROI than a physical one.
With that being said, virtual events are challenging !
A virtual meeting is not as spontaneous and welcoming as a classic one. It is necessary that hosts find creative ways to get the participants committed.
Catching a participant’s attention up from the screen is tough. It takes innovation from the hosts to raise discussions.
A virtual event host must anticipate some technical constraints and get constantly updated with new technology
Prepare for a virtual event: the to do list
The whole success of a virtual event depends on how well you prepared for it. Here is a to do list:
✔ Think about the ergonomics
Put yourself in the shoes of your participants. Bottom line is: they need to understand in a simple and intuitive way how to move around on the platform. A user who doesn't understand will easily give up. A successful experience is the key to the success of your event. It is crucial that you work on your operator interface.
✔ Anticipate technical problems
The user must be supported throughout his visit to the platform in order to anticipate and solve the bugs. Before a live event, you’d want to offer a reception area to make sure everything is working properly.
✔ Check connection speed and bandwidth
Worst case scenario would be a bad connection and a buggy platform. A simple technical problem becomes a nightmare for both users and hosts ! Make sure that your platform works fast enough for the number of visitors you expect.
✔ Plan strategies in order to enhance customer’s commitment
Time doesn’t go as fast for in-person meetings and on-screen ones. Using interacting tools will help catch participants' attention: quiz, brainstorm, vote, chat ... the internet gives efficient resources to keep your audience awake.
✔ Offer a multidimensional event
In order to keep their focus on your event, constantly sharpen the curiosity of your audience. Conference, meetings, workshops, pitch…, make them part of the event and help them build their own program among the various activities and conferences offered. Communication is key: 3 to 4 weeks before the scheduled date, start communicating. E-mail, social networks, press releases and sponsored ads are your best allies. The online event is a great opportunity for your company to broaden its usual target.
The recipe for a successful virtual event
To make your digital events a 100% success, follow our checklist of rules :
Choose the right platform
The right platform is the one that will best match the event you want to set up. Yet, among the many platform tools, it would be tough to make up your mind. Reason why before you sign up, you need a clear idea of your perfect tool. Do you want to set up an integrated ticket office? Are you planning conferences and webinars? How will the participants communicate with each other? And many more questions you’ll have to answer before choosing the right platform.
👉 See our article on How to choose the right platform.
Increase the commitment rate
The level of commitment of the participants makes the added value of an event. There’s no point in attending a live conference without interacting with the other participants. They’d better watch a replay at a time that suits them better. Exchange and connections are the most important parameters to a successful virtual event. There are many ways to achieve them : interactive workshops, live demos, contests, surveys… anything is possible !
Encourage networking and meeting
Here again, networking is a vital point of an event. Your members want to learn from your conference and most importantly meet potential clients and partners. It is essential that you set up tools that ease exchanges. Fortunately, some interfaces can suggest relevant connections to participants. You could almost believe it all happened by chance!
Find your braand signature
Each event must find its signature. It is up to each company to define its style, to bring the “wow” effect or to create what makes it a unique and consumer-friendly product.
As you now know, a virtual event is a powerful communication tool for both event hosts and participants. A well prepared virtual event is a unique, creative and affordable moment that will remain in the event industry from now on.
Are you in?