You may be wondering, what is a virtual event? Simply stated, “Virtual events use technology to deliver an entirely online experience. Which may include keynote speakers, small breakout session webinars, and webcasts. Other options that may be included are virtual lobbies, hosted Q&A, and audience interactivity.”
Virtual meetings connect participants and provide educational opportunities for participants without travel. It has never been a better time to re-examine your events to explore a shift in live-streaming an event. With creativity at the forefront, virtual conferences are now designed to be: inclusive, entertaining, and interactive.
How Do You Begin Planning a Virtual Meeting?
“Begin with the end in mind” is great advice for virtual events. By starting with a clear understanding of the outcome, the program can be designed to meet the organization’s goals, incorporate their vision, and keep the organization’s culture intact.
What to Ask Clients in the Planning Phase
Before jumping into hosting a virtual event, stop, ask the internal stakeholders a few questions and thoughtfully consider the answers:
Virtual Meeting Strategy
- What are your goals in providing a virtual conference?
Here are some examples of what to consider in the beginning:
- broaden your audience
- revenue generation
- marketing vehicle
- continuing education
- What are your concerns with taking your event virtual?
- Do you want to incorporate virtual events into your long-term strategic plans?
Experience with On-Line Events
- How familiar are you with virtual conferences?
- Does your organization currently host webinars?
- What is your anticipated budget for the virtual meeting?
- Is your virtual event revenue driven? If so, what would an ideal outcome look like?
Attendee & Sponsor Participation
- What aspects of your in-person meeting could be presented virtually?
- How interactive do you anticipate your audience being?
- Will you incorporate sponsors or exhibitors into the virtual conference?
Post Event Availability
- How long would you like the information to be available (archived)?
These decisions impact the platform selection, timing, speakers, sponsors, and attendee satisfaction. In short, all of it!
MeetGreen has additional resources for planning virtual events, the carbon savings of producing events online and even a glossary. In conclusion, a virtual event can be beneficial in ways you hadn’t considered before. Now is the time to think outside of the box and give an on-line experience your attendees will benefit from.