Today, the world has changed and so does the ways of hosting events. Soon after the pandemic will get over, the events will not be the same as the pre-pandemic era. The sudden outbreak of the COVID-19 global pandemic has affected the event industry majorly. As all live physical events came to a stop, virtual events were the only viable option left with organizations to keep going. Today, event planners and marketers around the world adopted the new event format to keep going. During these challenging times of the pandemic, virtual events prove to be a savior for many businesses. Whereas many businesses that did not leverage virtual events technology were completely shut.
Many organizations and businesses have taken a smart move and transformed their live physical activities and events to the virtual world. Today, hosting virtual events have become mainstream.
Virtual events work on the same fundamentals as those of in-person events. Right from planning and strategy to booking a virtual venue and deciding upon promotion strategies, engaging attendees, collecting attendee feedbacks, tracking, and more. All the aspects remain the same with virtual event formats too. Transiting to virtual events is not that difficult. All you need to do is pick the right virtual event platform, brainstorm to create an effective strategy, and promote it. And you are all set to host a successful virtual event that delivers success stories.
In this blog, we have enlisted some of the best practices to pivot to virtual events and achieve maximum out of them. So just sit back, sip your coffee and go through the best practices to host virtual events. Let’s get started!
Best Practices for Virtual Events
1. Create life-like immersive experiences in the virtual world
The first and foremost step to achieve success out of your virtual event is to deliver immersive experiences. Deliver life-like physical event experiences in the virtual world. It helps in engaging attendees effortlessly while delivering value to them. Keep the event interactive and engaging by incorporating various games, contests, and quizzes just like physical events. Replicating the essence of live physical events and recreating physical event experiences helps in making virtual events successful.
2. Select the right technology to ensure a smooth and seamless event
With virtual events, technology has a major role to play. It can make or break the event instantly. Look for a virtual event platform that adheres to safety compliance. It ensures your data is safe and secure. Additionally, while making a final choice look for a platform that offers a wide range of engagement and networking options. It will allow attendees to interact with other participants and speakers just like physical events. Whereas, engagement opportunities offered during the virtual events help in keeping attendees hooked for longer hours. Apart from it, look for data tracking features in a virtual event platform. It helps in generating accurate event analytics reports that help in measuring the performance of the event.
3. Set a time and date suitable for all
Do a little research before finalizing your event date and time. If you are targeting global attendees with your virtual event, keep time zone considerations in mind. Select a time that is suitable for the maximum number of attendees to ensure great attendance at your event. Apart from it, select a date that does not have any other event or a holiday. Otherwise, it will directly affect the event attendance.
4. Promote your virtual events on social media
Make it a point to promote your virtual events on social media platforms. Even if your event is well planned and strategized, but if it will not reach your audience, it’s of no use. Today, almost all people of every age are available on social media. Look for a social media platform that has your potential attendees and promote your upcoming virtual event on it. Embrace the power of social channels and reach as many attendees as possible. It will help in promoting your virtual event and reach the right set of attendees.
5. Utilize engagement features offered by the platform
Offer enormous opportunities for engagement during virtual events to attendees. You can opt to organize live polls, contests, quizzes, AR/VR virtual games, photo booths, social walls, and more. It not only helps in keeping attendees engaged at the event but boosts excitement at the event too.
6. Offer quality compelling content
Curate innovative and engaging content for your virtual events. Your content should be powerful enough to grab your attendee’s interest in it. Create compelling, engaging, and informative content that delivers value to attendees and upscale virtual event experiences.
7. Enable your attendees to connect and network in real-time
Facilitate your attendees to have open communications just like physical events. Allow your attendees to network with other participants, exhibitors, sponsors, hosts as well as speakers in real-time. Offer various networking features during the virtual event such as audio/video live chats, AI-matchmaking, virtual networking tables, business card exchange, and more. It will allow attendees to connect freely and have open discussions in a virtual environment.
8. Custom branding
Allow organizers and exhibitors to customize the virtual event set up and booth as per company branding. It helps in delivering a brand message more effectively to the audience as they can recognize the brand in virtual settings. Look for a platform that offers custom branding solutions that allow you to replicate the look and feel of your live physical events. Customize lobby area, walkthrough, auditoriums, Virtual exhibition areas, booths, and more to deliver immersive event experiences.
9. Offer a dedicated area to sponsors
During your virtual events, do not miss out on any sponsor at the last minute. Display sponsored dynamic banners during the event. Additionally, offer a dedicated space for sponsors to present themselves to a widely spread diverse audience around the globe. Apart from it, you can opt to display their logos at the bottom in the sessions sponsored by them.
10. Generate real-time event analytics report
Once your event gets over generate a real-time event analytics report to measure event performance. Generating accurate event analytics reports is just not possible with a live physical event. But, with virtual events, you can keep complete track of every attendee move and generate real-time event analytics reports.
11. Gather feedbacks
Collect feedback from your attendees instantly before they leave the event. It will help you in understanding their preferences and what they enjoyed at the event and whatnot. It will help you with strategizing future events in a better way.
The idea to pivot to virtual events looks quite appealing in times like today. It has helped many businesses to achieve success. But, some might lag behind in this race. To help everyone who is new to the virtual event format, we have listed the best practices to pivot virtual events and achieve maximum out of them!