The consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic are unknown to none. Every industry has faced its own set of challenges and difficulties, and the events industry is one of them. The unfortunate situations that emerged because of the pandemic have not only impacted the event planning sphere but also the organizations that were looking forward to hosting important events like conferences. It became difficult to bring together a large number of people in a single space due to safety concerns. However, the event planning experts refused to fail and innovated the most efficient blend of event and technology. Be it a product launch event, a team meeting, or a conference, it is now possible to host and attend all types of events over a virtual event platform, from the comfort of your remote locations.
The emergence of virtual events has not just made it extremely easy to host and attend events but has also changed the way we perceive the idea of hosting events. An advanced virtual event platform is well-equipped with the best engagement and networking tools that eliminate the cons of shifting to the virtual world.
A conference is one such event that is of extreme importance to different organizations and had to face difficulties in the wake of the pandemic. But, the virtual conference platforms turned in and made it possible to host significant conferences once again. Nevertheless, hosting a virtual conference comes with its own set of pros and cons. Let’s comprehend the meaning of virtual conferences clearly and explore some of the top steps to host a successful online event.
What is a Virtual Conference?
A virtual conference is an interactive online event that brings together a large group of people to discuss industry-related topics of importance. A virtual conference takes place over a virtual event platform that provides an excellent and immersive experience to all your remote attendees and keeps them engaged in the event throughout. the virtual conference includes various sessions like keynotes, panel discussions, training, webinar, entertainment sessions, etc.
10 Steps to Host a Successful Virtual Conference
Following are some of the best ways to ensure the success of your virtual conference:
#1 Set Clear Goals
Setting a clear goal can help you ensure the smooth flow of your virtual conference. There is always a reason behind hosting any virtual event. You have to be clear with what, why, and hows of your event to make sure that you don’t miss out on planning or strategizing any important aspect. Ask yourself the following questions while predefining the goal of your virtual conference:
- Why do you want to host the virtual conference?
- Who is your target audience?
- What are the engagement and networking tools you wish to include in the conference?
- How will your participants benefit from the conference?
- What will be the theme of the event?
#2 Strategize the Content
Hosting virtual conferences means strategizing the content carefully. It is so because keeping your attendees can be a challenging task as they are attending all your sessions over a screen. A proper content plan, strategy, design, and execution can ensure your event’s engagement prospects, further amplifying the quality of your event experience.
#3 Choose the Right Virtual Conference Platform
Choosing the most suitable virtual hybrid event platform is one of the most important steps in the process of organizing a virtual conference. An efficient virtual conference venue can provide you with the most advanced and innovative tools that can add to the quality of your event. Refer to the following questions while choosing your preferred virtual venue:
- Is the platform customizable?
- What are the networking opportunities provided by the platform?
- Does the virtual venue provide proper backend support?
- What is the data collection prospect?
- What are the different available engagement tools?
#4 Create an Effective Agenda
While organizing a virtual event, it is significant to acknowledge the fact that all the participants are attending the event over a screen. So, your main focus should be on keeping your attendees engaged. A well-planned agenda can not only form a structure for your virtual conferences but also ensure its smooth flow. Also, make sure your sessions are not too long and tedious for the remote attendees.
#5 Include Prominent Speakers
Skilled and experienced speakers can further enhance the engagement scope at your virtual conference. A well-planned content would be of no importance if it doesn’t reach your audience efficiently. A skilled speaker or presenter knows the significance of interacting with the attendees.
#6 Promote your Virtual Conference
Promoting your online conference through different marketing and promotional activities can create a much-required social buzz for your virtual conference. Following are a few simple ideas to promote your online conference:
- Email Marketing
- Website banners
- Social media contests
- Word of mouth
- Social Media Marketing
#7 Incorporate Excellent Engagement Tools
An advanced virtual conference platform comes with many innovative tools and options that can ensure attendee engagement at your online event. From gamification to interactive tools, there are various ways you can add to the engagement aspect at your virtual conference. Following are some of the best engagement tools provided by advanced platforms like Dreamcast:
- Virtual Scavenger Hunts
- Virtual Escape Rooms
- Coffee Breaks via Virtual
- AI Matchmaking
- Social Walls
- Photo Booths
- Signature Walls
- Live Q&A, polls, trivia, contests
- and a lot more…
#8 Bring Valuable Sponsors
Sponsorship is one of the most efficient ideas to add value to your online conference. Sponsors aim to maximize their reach, and by bringing them on board you can make use of their aim to achieve your goal of hosting a successful event. Following are some of the top sponsored elements to enhance the value of your virtual conference:
- Sponsored Coffee Breaks
- Sponsored Meals
- Entertainment Sessions Sponsored
- Swag Bags Sponsored
- Breakout Chat Room Sponsored
- and many more…
#9 Test the Technology
While using a technological platform, it is significant to test all the tools before the event day to avoid any possible error or glitch. This will also help your speakers get a hang of the platform functions.
Also, ensure that the virtual conference and webinar platform provides proper backend support in case of any urgent requirements.
#10 Collect Feedback and Analyze the Event Data
While direct feedback of your attendees can help you understand their satisfaction level and event experience, analyzing all the event data can help you determine the efficacy of your event strategies. Feedback collection and event data reports will not only help you examine your virtual conference but also help you in future event planning.
Do you want to host a successful virtual conference? Contact Dreamcast now!