5 Key Details to Consider When Planning Your Virtual Event
Though "going virtual" is no longer out of the norm for us, taking our events into the virtual space is still a big task for lots of businesses and organizations. We're talking about important things to consider when planning your next virtual event.
As much as we were hoping that 2021 would bring life back to “normal”, the reality is that we are living through a pandemic.
Zoom meetings are still standard practice. Our attire continues to be professional on the top, comfy on the bottom. And we’re still stuck at home.
As with so many industries, Covid has hit the event industry incredibly hard. 2020 saw most events completely canceled, with a few venturing into the virtual event realm. And though we hoped 2021 would bring back live events, the reality is more likely that events will continue to take place virtually for the foreseeable future.
What does that mean for your event?
The term “agile” has never been more applicable than it is when it comes to how to move a live-person event into the online-space. The unfortunate reality is that not every event can be reformatted to a virtual format. But, with that being said, even traditional events (like fundraisers) can be rethought and reproduced in this virtual world we are adjusting to.
We can’t really sum up virtual event planning in one blog post, but we wanted to share some key insights and pieces of advice when it comes to putting on a virtual event.
5 Steps for Planning A Virtual Event
Consider Your Audience
When planning any event, but particularly a virtual one, taking into consideration your audience is key. Having a deep understanding of who your audience is, where they are located, what their tolerance for technology is, and what information resonates most with them will all help you figure out the details of your event and inform you as to how to plan the best event that aligns and resonates with your audience.
Have a Solid Gameplan
Planning any type of event requires a strong capacity for organization and attention to detail. It may seem that a virtual event might possess less challenge than a live event, but keep in mind you’ll be dealing with totally different variables. Enter the planning process as you would with any event. You’ll need timelines, budgets, marketing strategies, attendee engagement activities, follow up surveys, and everything else you’d have in place for a “normal” event, but now instead of traffic flow maps and emergency plan preparation, you’ll need to have technology support plans and accessibility options mapped out.
Choose the Best Technology/Platform
This all comes down to what you need your platform to add to your event. Is it just a place for attendees to log into? Or do you need a high-level of tracking and interactivity? There are many different tools out there for hosting your live event so you’ll have to do your research to pick the right one (we can help!). Plus, working with technology always opens up the door to tech-failure so having a detailed plan in place to deal with glitches, user issues, and support will be necessary.
Use Social Media to Spread the Word
Social media is going to be key to help spread the word for your event. Not unlike marketing for live events, your social strategy is going to be a key player in connecting with your audience and building interest in your event. But it’s going to have to be more than a Facebook or Twitter post. Get creative in using TikTok or Reels, Vlogs with information about the event, or content geared towards what guests should expect.
Looking for some inspiration for your virtual event? Here’s a list of ideas for virtual events you could host for your business.
Interactive Tutorials and Classes
Workshops or Training Courses
3D or Behind-the-scene Tours
Interviews or Live Performances
Live Games or Competitions