Planning Virtual Events in a Topsy-Turvy World - DeanHouston+

Inspire, Trade Show, Visual Marketing

Planning Virtual Events in a Topsy-Turvy World

Back in early 2020, everything got turned on its head.

And upside down, inside-out, backwards, sideways and topsy-turvy. We all know the story.

For the past year-plus, common outings like sporting events, concerts, vacations, trade shows, and most other social activities in our work and personal lives have changed. Much of it is still different from how it all used to be, including business events.

All over the world, virtual events had to replace in-person gatherings. Interestingly, but perhaps not surprisingly, many companies in many verticals found success in hosting virtual events. They were able to accomplish the same things that could be done with their in-person counterpart – not the least of which is that virtual events cost less to host and have an opportunity for better attendance.

The success and comfortability of online events have also brought some improved ways to plan and execute them. Here are some helpful tips to successfully prepare for one.

Assign People to Help Run the Show
Any event, virtual or otherwise, takes a lot of time and details to orchestrate. Therefore, assigning a person or two (if possible) within your team to dedicate to the event can save a lot of back and forth and eliminate having too many cooks in the kitchen.

Online EventsChoose the Right Tech
Streaming is everything, especially where it concerns your audience. While you’re somewhat at the mercy of available connectivity and hardware, as the host you’ll need to keep a watchful eye on this. You certainly don’t want the streams to fail or cross – which, as Dr. Egon Spengler prophetically pointed out in 1984, would be bad.

It’s imperative to make sure you use the right platform for your needs (Zoom, Facebook Live, Google Hangouts, etc.) and that it’s agreed upon, equally accessible, and running smoothly for your attendees.

Expect the Unexpected
Unforeseen issues happen. You hope that mistakes or tech issues don’t arise, but plan for them to happen. The goal will always be to have the show go off without a hitch, but between software glitches, connectivity problems and other hang-ups, there may be a few problems to deal with. Try to prepare for these ahead of time as best you can so that you can minimize any downtime and keep the event running.

Facilitate and Mitigate
Social events are just that – social. Virtual events are social, too, but in a more formal way. It’s harder to have that natural, casual type of discourse among people in a virtual setting and keep the event on track at the same time. Therefore, the person moderating the event must be ready to intercede and keep any crosstalk or too-casual discussions from pushing the event agenda too far off course.

Hosting any event will have its challenges. But with virtual settings being a huge part of the new normal, these types of events are likely here to stay. With these guidelines, you’ll be better prepared to plan and execute a smooth, successful virtual event yourself.

To learn more about hosting virtual events, check out The Top Benefits of Utilizing Alternative Trade Show Solutions.

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