Three Insights in Turning to Digital Events
In the wake of the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic, meeting and event professionals have had to turn on a dime, finding new ways to keep programs running and their attendees engaged. Planners have had to scramble to reimagine their events in record time.
Here at Eventinterface we’ve developed three insights with a series of questions to help make the move from live events to virtual events easier for you. Answer these questions and you’ll see if virtual events can work for you, and what type of technology you will need to employ to be successful.
WHAT ARE YOUR GOALS?
First, we think it is key to keep your original event goals in mind. Is your event educational, a networking event, a fundraiser? Not every event is created equal and some are easier to produce virtually than others. What experience were you going to offer your participants, and how can you recreate this via a live streamed event?
Is your program pretty straightforward and you are live streaming one speaker, or do you require a higher level of engagement? Will you have panel discussions or group presentations requiring speakers to join from various remote locations?
Will your participants view a presentation on their computers or smart phones? Will your participants need access to additional content, for example worksheets? Will you want to bring in augmented or virtual reality?
Each individual need will dictate the streaming service you will need to employ to meet your goals. Your live event goals should mirror your virtual event goals as much as possible.
KNOW YOUR STAKEHOLDERS
It is key to have an excellent understanding of who your stakeholders are, and what their capabilities may be. What technology are they comfortable using, and what amount of time do they have available to join a streaming event?
Most people are getting used to participating in webinars now, and joining your streaming event should not be more complicated. From our perspective, prior to selecting a platform to use, you need to understand how your stakeholders will participate.
Will your attendees join from their desk on a computer, perhaps they prefer to join via their smartphone or tablet? Engagement features may work well on a computer, but may become very hard to use on a smartphone.
Participants using corporate devices may not be able to download apps or software to access your live stream. Is the technology you consider using app-based or web-based? Web-based would be the preferred solution in this case. Shameless promotional plug for Eventinterface Virtual, we’re web-based.
As far as your speakers are concerned, it’s much more than technology. On a regular basis we hear from speakers who do not like participating in virtual events. Not being in a room, seeing their audience face to face can affect the performance of the speaker.
On the technology side, it is key to understand the equipment your speakers will need to present, from computer, HD camera, an excellent microphone and high-speed internet. You will have to assign time to prep your speakers, run a dress rehearsal to ensure the technology runs smoothly and your speaker is comfortable presenting virtually.
The third stakeholders are you sponsors. Since your live event is not taking place, how will you be able to recognize your sponsors via your live streamed event?
KEEP THE EXPERIENCE CONSISTENT
You may have held your event years in a row, and your attendees are used to certain aspects of your event. They find value in your educational sessions, welcome the exhibitors and appreciate the networking opportunities. Going virtual, you will have to find ways to offer these same experiences to your participants.
Consider the amount of time you have to produce your virtual event. Most likely you will have to change your communication strategy with your prospect attendees, even play an educational role. The more complicated the event and platforms used, the more time you will need to prepare and execute your strategy.
ABOUT EVENTINTERFACE VIRTUAL
Incorporate live streaming as part of your event experience with Eventinterface Virtual. Eventinterface offers the full event lifecycle experience, from registrations, attendee engagement, content distribution and live streaming events. Even share content post conference to generate additional revenue for organization or company.
Eventinterface Virtual is included in our annual Enterprise Plan. Other plans can add it starting at $49 a month for the webinar package. Generally, pricing is customized to meet the needs of the planner. And best of all, there are no audience limits. Take a peek at the short video to here to see Eventinterface Virtual in action. Sign up for a personal demo here.