Virtual Events: The Ultimate Guide in 2020
Engaging Attendees in a Virtual Space
While there will always be a place in the event-space for face-to-face engagement, Covid-19 has forced all brands to rethink the way they approach events and large gatherings.
When considering all the many aspects that go into planning and executing a large event, the idea of transitioning to a virtual space can seem daunting and confusing. Questions arise such as, how can we maintain attendee engagement over a multi-day event? How can we promote and execute networking events and opportunities? And how can we ensure that our attendees walk away feeling entertained, engaged and feeling like they gained value at the event?
By approaching a virtual event not as an online presentation, but, rather, an engaging, attendee-focused experience, you can ensure that your event will be impactful for the audience and regarded for long after they log off from the event.
Defining Your Virtual Event
Virtual events come in all shapes in sizes. From elaborate, multi-day affairs involving seminars, breakout sessions, and networking events, to simple 30 minute webinars.
Regardless of the type of virtual event you wish to produce, each requires a specific amount of detail and preparation to execute.
Webinars are usually short form information sessions ranging from 30-120 minutes. Users from anywhere in the world can log-in to view or listen to subject-matter experts speak on any given topic. Depending on the platform involved questions can be asked and the speakers can be either streamed live or be pre-recorded. Brands can charge for webinars and also offer up the recorded webinar even after it has been concluded.
Some fantastic platforms that Venture uses for hosting and streaming recommends for hosting webinars include:
- 6 Connex – 6 Connex has social integration for all the usual suspects, measurement and analytics in realtime and registration features to fit most needs. Plus, it is available on pretty much any device and browser.
- Webnar Ninja – Allows you to quickly setup your webinar and offers both free and paid options. Offers email notifications, automations, and the ability track with Facebook pixels.
- YouTube Livestream – One of the simplest and easiest solutions out there for streaming webinars to your customers or users.
2. Virtual Events and Conferences
Virtual conferences are structured around tiered agendas of speakers, events, keynotes, and breakout sessions. When it comes to transitioning from traditional in-person events to virtual events, its important to remember the two primary reasons that people go to conferences in the first place: to educate themselves and to network with like-minded peers.
As such, it is very important to create a virtual environment that feeds these needs and ensures that the attendees leave having their core demands fulfilled.
Ensure that you create an environment where participation is not only possible, but anticipated. Nearly every virtual event platform has some sort of chat feature, Q&A, and polling feature.
At Venture, we have heard good things and can recommend the following Virtual Event platforms:
- Brella – Your attendees can listen to speakers, use multi-track agendas and visit sponsors. Use it as your central hub to keep your event organized and running.
- Run the World – A very cool and innovative platform that lets you run and host events of all sizes. Tons of different templates allow you to avoid a lot of the hassles that come with the build-from-scratch realities of other platforms.
3. Social Events and Livestreams
Social channels can be one of the single best ways to drive engagement with your target audience. It’s low cost and ease of use makes it one of the single best ways for brands to reach out and keep their core audiences up to date on events. Here are all of the platforms that currently utilizes live video and streaming capabilities:
Producing Your Virtual Event
There are numerous ways to go about physically producing your virtual event. Much of the time, circumstances surrounding the particulars of the setting will dictate how the production will happen.
For instance, when deciding whether or not to have a live-streamed broadcast of speakers or to stream a pre-recorded file of the speakers, the team will need to take into considerations factors such as internet connectivity, the speaker’s technical comfort, availability, and more.
At Venture, it is our job to ensure that every aspect of the event; big or small, online or offline, is strategically coordinated and planned for ahead of time. Our team of producer’s, event coordinators, production crew and post-production professionals ensure that your virtual attendees make the seamless transition from in-person to virtual guests while remaining engaged and dedicated participants of your brand’s event.
For more information on how Venture can help you coordinate your video production and execute your next virtual event, from promotion to production, please contact us here or at email@example.com.