If there is one thing the Coronavirus pandemic has taught us, it is how to connect with people via virtual platforms. While the pandemic has forced countries to go into lockdown for months, it has also brought families together, thanks to the technological advancements in the virtual world. Everything from family chats and celebrations to business meetings and entire celebrations has gone virtual now. Taking that into account, here are a few takes on how to go about arranging virtual events in the new norm.
The planning phase for all virtual events always starts with a proper agenda. It is important to have an agenda in place for a virtual event, as it will allow you to notice differences early on. For instance, you may notice that not all the participants in the event are from the same time zone. You will need to plan the meeting at a time where you can expect the maximum number of attendees.
The agenda will also need to include details like the duration of the event, along with the time intervals allocated for breaks. Another part of the agenda involves planning how your content will play during the event. A wise choice is to opt for a proper blend of live-streamed video and pre-recorded ones to keep the virtual sessions interesting and interactive.
You must allow the free flow of communication between both sides during a virtual event. By the free flow of communication, we do not mean between the speaker and participants alone but between the participants as well. Your virtual event should allow attendees to communicate with each other as well, in addition to communicating with you. The free flow of communication between all parties paves the way for a more engaging virtual event that keeps the attendees engaged throughout the event. It will also allow for new ideas to flow in and collate to make future presentations and events more creative and interesting.
Distractions are aplenty in the world of virtual events. These distractions will also be unlike anything that you will encounter with standard events. From phone calls, social media and emails to babysitting, household chores and family emergencies, there is no dearth to the number of distractions that can arise during a virtual event. This is the reason why the virtual event you conduct must be as engaging as possible. And that be done by including several engagement points within a multi-hour session. You can try to include interesting snippets like Q&A sessions, short quizzes, audience polling sessions, etc. to make the event interactive and immersive.
The thumb rule for a virtual event is to include an audience engagement session once every 15 minutes. In addition to the speaker arranging these activities, you can choose to ask the participants to contribute to these sessions by creating worksheets or showcasing their talents during these breaks.
Having a moderator or an additional host to assist you during the event is an added plus. The host/moderator should be experienced and qualified enough to interact with both the speaker and participants, keeping both sides engaged and entertained throughout the event. It pays to hire a professional emcee who has experience in moderating such events for the same purpose.
Virtual events are going to be the norm for a foreseeable future. They could be anything from a company’s annual event, product launch to an online concert. We believe this trend in the event space is here to stay; events are going to keep evolving in this direction in the time to come. As more events go virtual and the industry focused on delivering value in a virtual format, we’re dedicated to extending our services for such requirements.