Three steps to succeed with virtual events
Are you about to arrange a virtual event? Then there are a lot of things to think about. Don’t worry, we have listed the three most important steps in the process towards a successful and smooth virtual event.
1. Plan, plan, plan
Just because the event is virtual, it doesn’t mean less planning. Undeniably, virtual events can be quicker to produce than physical ones. But good planning is the key to a successful event. So what should you think about in the planning process?
Dare to visualize your event
Think freely at the beginning of planning. Brainstorm with your colleagues who best know your target audience. Bring your notes and start sketching out how these ideas could be integrated into your event. Then investigate which event platform and which functions are required for the dreams to become reality. Do not feel limited by technology – take advantage of the possibilities.
Don’t forget the purpose
Make sure that your vision goes hand in hand with the purpose and goal of the event. What do you and your business want to get out of it? In addition to an inspiring experience for your participants, you might want to assure that you gather the right data to analyze the event afterward. Maybe you want to strengthen your network and get new, hot leads.
If your purpose is to collect certain data, then make sure you have the tools to collect them. You want to make sure you can get the information to your CRM system. Data from events, virtual and physical, can reveal important information about your company, products, and what people are interested in. Ensure you can gather the information you need! Once you have the clear purpose of the event in mind, you can focus on what setup and functions will make you reach your goals.
What does your target group need?
It’s easy to fall into the trap and plan from the inside out and just think about your needs. But do not forget the participants! What goals of attending your event do they have? What will they get out of the event? How does your event become interesting, accessible, and as engaging as possible?
If you think about who your target group is and what their needs are, chances are greater participants will be satisfied with the end result.
2. Preparation, preparation, preparation
Virtual events require rehearsal. We would actually dare to say that they require more practice than a physical event. The schedule during a digital or hybrid event needs to be extremely clear and frictionless. Imagine it as a TV production, where every detail has a meaning. When speakers go on and off a stage, the physical audience has more patience than when it happens digitally. The digital participants lose focus and start doing other things if it does not happen in a few seconds. To prevent mishaps through a detailed schedule. Test all functions and demand that your lecturers test their presentations in the platform used before they go live. You can also give them tips on how to keep a digital crowd focused through a presentation. This is because there are essential differences between holding a lecture for a physical compared to a digital audience.
As we all know, all the elements of an event can go wrong, whether they take place in-person or virtually. A detailed and rehearsed plan that you have gone through from different angles makes you feel safer on the day of the event. Being at the heart of the event, you as the organizer should aim not to be locked on any specific task during the actual event to be able to help other people involved if questions should arise. If you have done a thorough preparation, you might have time to experience parts of the event as a participant.
3. Test, test, test
A virtual event means that a lot of technology is involved; everything from sound, light, and movie clips to slide shows, streams, and other types of presentations. During a physical event, you want to avoid your participants experiencing technical difficulties. At a virtual event, it’s more important than ever. If an online participant gets frustrated, there is a high risk that that person will log out and do something else.
In other words, a virtual event means a greater risk of more technical mishaps combined with participants with less patience. By testing all technology before, you can influence the entire user experience.
Take into account technical mistakes in the planning, so you have time to solve them. You can also let focus groups test your platform before it goes live. Then you will see if it works as you want and if everything is user-friendly, clickable, and easy to understand.
So with these tips, it’s time to get started!
With these three steps, you have already come a long way to a successful virtual event. By planning, practicing and testing, chances of a great event increase. And above all, you will have solutions easy at hand when problems occur.