Virtual events are a great way to bring together people from different locations, but there’s more to it than just setting up a webinar or conference call. To ensure your virtual event goes off without a hitch and is just as engaging as an in-person meeting, you need to plan carefully — from the agenda through to the technology used for transmission. The following tips will help ensure that your next virtual event not only has all the functionality needed for success, but also engages attendees with compelling content and activities.
Have A Solid Idea Of The Goals For Your Virtual Event
Before you start planning, it’s important to know the goals of your event. What do you want attendees to walk away with? Are there any specific things that need to happen in order for this to be considered a success?
In addition, make sure that everyone involved understands why they’re hosting this virtual event and what will be different about it than other types of events they’ve hosted or attended in the past. This will help ensure that everyone is on board with what needs to happen during this experience – and how much work may be required on their part as well!
Plan For Enough Time To Cover All Your Event Objectives
It’s important to plan for enough time to cover all your event objectives. Make sure you have enough time in the agenda so that you can be thorough, but not so much that it becomes overwhelming for attendees or presenters.
If the purpose of your virtual event is to educate participants on a specific topic or process, consider creating an outline of key points and then breaking down each point into subtopics that are manageable within a 60-minute session (or less).
For example: If we want our audience members who work as account managers at our client companies to learn how they can use social media effectively as part of their job responsibilities and responsibilities within their company culture, then here’s what might happen:
Structure Your Agenda To Be Engaging And Interactive
The structure of your agenda is key to ensuring that attendees are engaged and stay on schedule. Here are some tips for creating a successful agenda:
- Include a mix of presentations, panels and discussions. Presentations provide valuable information, while panelists can share real-world experiences with the audience. Discussions allow attendees to interact directly with one another in an environment that encourages conversation (and not just Q&A).
- Plan for time for audience interaction during each session or break period – whether it’s through discussion groups or informal conversations around coffee tables – so people feel comfortable asking questions or sharing their thoughts about what they’ve learned so far.
- Make sure there’s space on your agenda for networking opportunities such as happy hours or breaks where attendees can meet each other in person after having spent so much time interacting virtually beforehand!
Consider Your Audience’s Needs And Preferences
You’ll want to consider the time zone of your audience and when they are most likely to attend. If you’re hosting a virtual event for an international audience, you may want to consider different time zones and days so that everyone has an opportunity to participate.
You should also think about how your attendees prefer learning new information: through videos or text? In person or remotely? Do they like sharing ideas in groups or privately? What kinds of tools would make it easier for them to participate in this way?
Make Sure To Provide Ample Opportunities For Questions From Attendees
One of the most important things you can do to ensure that your virtual event is successful is providing ample opportunities for questions from attendees.
There are several ways you can do this:
- Use the chat feature on your platform and direct the conversation where it needs to go by actively participating in it. This will allow people who may be shy or nervous about asking questions face-to-face to feel comfortable doing so online.
- Provide a phone number where attendees can call in with their questions (and have someone ready to answer). This allows those who don’t have access to computer technology an opportunity to participate as well.
- Provide an email address where attendees can submit their questions beforehand if they’d like additional time before jumping into the conversation during live time at your virtual event (which is especially helpful if there will be multiple speakers).
Monitor How Well The Event Is Going And Adjust Accordingly
Use live chat to get feedback from attendees. The best way to monitor how well your event is going is by asking questions, and live chat allows you to do that without having to interrupt anyone’s flow or take up too much time. You can use it as an open question, such as “Does anyone have any questions?” or “How did this session go for you?” Or you can ask specific questions about what worked well or what didn’t work so well in order to improve future sessions.
Use polls and surveys during breaks in the programming (or even during sessions). This gives attendees an opportunity both before and after each session starts/ends, so they don’t feel rushed when answering them out loud with other people around them who may not want their opinion heard! Plus, it makes it easier if someone wants information but doesn’t know where else they could find it easily enough, we’ve all been there at some point.
A Virtual Event Can Be Just As Engaging As An In-Person One If You Plan Ahead
A virtual event can be just as engaging as an in-person one if you plan ahead, but it’s important to keep in mind that there are some key differences. For example, with a virtual event, you won’t have the benefit of facial expressions or body language to help convey your message and build rapport with participants. This means that you’ll need to spend extra time ensuring that your presentation is well-organized, clear and concise – and don’t forget about visual aids!
Another difference between virtual events and those held in person is the fact that attendees cannot easily ask questions during a presentation. One of possible ways to control it is to use one of the best available virtual event platforms that include different features for communication with attendees like live-chat.
While there are many ways to ensure that your virtual event is as engaging as possible, it’s important not to get caught up in the details. The key is to have a clear idea of what you want from your attendees, and then plan accordingly. If you can do this well enough, then you’ll be able to make sure that your event goes off without a hitch!