As we’re all adjusting to a brand-new reality from the COVID-19 pandemic, virtual events continue to become a mainstay for daily communication.
However, how can you ensure a virtual event is a success?
Virtual events are the ones that happen online. Unlike physical events, they’re not restricted to one specific audience size or location. Anyone with a stable internet connection can join to watch virtual events.
There are, however, some events that have both physical and virtual components. They’re most commonly referred to as the “hybrid events.” In a hybrid event, a group that is in attendance is interacting physically which is then broadcasted to a live audience online.
Regardless of whether you will be hosting a hybrid or virtual event, here are a few tips to keep in mind:
- Create Value for Sponsors
With the live streaming option, you’re able to design content that incorporates sponsor branding. Make sure that you help your sponsors achieve ROI.
How? Invite your sponsors in hosting breakout sessions, creating valuable content, or taking part in some of the panel sessions.
Virtual registration platforms for virtual and hybrid events can track those that attend a session and those that download the presentations of sponsors.
These can serve as powerful metrics for sponsors. If a sponsor relies on experiencing or sampling products, it’s a good idea to send out samples or branded packs to attendees in advance.
- Time It Right
How long should a virtual event last? This will, of course, depend on the audience and the content. However, generally speaking, an hour is what you should aim for.
Any longer than that tends to make people lose interest. If you are hosting several different events through a reliable hybrid event platform, get a feel of how long the attention of the physical and virtual audience lasts.
Also, think carefully about when the event starts. Anything too close to mealtime can summon a small child’s wrath. Leave enough time to allow your audience to be more focused.
- Secure Audience Engagement
Virtual or hybrid virtual events aren’t the same as physical ones. It is unlikely for attendees to sit glued to screens all day. Instead, they’re most likely to dip in and out frequently.
To engage your physical and online audience, here are some key points to remember:
- Produce great content and make sure that your slides have an impact
- Make use of story-telling for your presentation as it is more likely to hook viewers from the beginning and make sure they’re also listening
- Select a great host that will bring a dynamic edge onto your hybrid or virtual event
- Interact with the audience from the very start, don’t forget to ask questions, and share results of polls live, as necessary
- Event Promotion and Marketing
Promoting and marketing your event can seem like an insurmountable challenge when you’re planning one yourself, but by putting some effort into planning it out ahead of time, you can make sure that everything goes smoothly on the day of the event.
Event promotion and marketing don’t always come naturally, especially if you’re not used to planning events or selling products and services.
The good news is that there are plenty of tools and strategies out there that will help you plan and organize an effective event promotion and marketing strategy, so you can get people excited about your upcoming event and increase the number of people that come to it.
Take time to figure out different ways to run your own promotional campaign before the event happens, determine which media outlets are most likely to cover it, and create unique content based on your event’s purpose and theme.
Are you ready for your first successful hybrid event? Don’t forget to choose a reliable hybrid event platform, preferably one that can streamline the hosting process and boost audience engagement! Best of luck!