If you’re an event organizer in 2020, it is very likely that you have used or will have to use a virtual events platform for at least some of your events.
Due to the traveling restrictions and social distancing norms that have been set to protect us from the COVID-19 pandemic, the event industry had to go virtual.
There are many challenges that come with the virtual space but also there are several opportunities. When it comes to virtual events ideas, there is no limit on the number of possibilities due to the features provided by modern virtual events platforms.
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Engagement is still the basic metric for any virtual event
When it comes to virtual events engagement is one of the most important metrics for success, just like physical events.
One of the major virtual events benefits is that you can invite a huge number of attendees but keeping them engaged online is a different story. Fortunately, there are a number of ways you can increase engagement for your virtual event’s engagement.
In this blog, we’re going to take a look at some of the best ways to create engagement within virtual events and how to use them to your advantage for your next virtual event.
6 Ways to Engage Your Attendees
To create better engagement within virtual events, it is important to not only use the engagement features provided by the virtual event platform you’re using. It is also important to make changes to how you design the event and host it.
With that being said, here are 6 ways you can increase engagement for your virtual events:
1. Design your event keeping engagement in mind
When it comes to increasing virtual events engagement, it is important to design the event in a way that actually sparks engagement by customising the event.
One of the major virtual events benefits is that hosting a virtual event gives you a lot more control over the virtual environment as now one can customise it. This is why it is important to create an event where engagement is natural.
Provide as many channels for engagement as possible by allowing attendees to comment, view, and ask questions about different aspects of the event.
2. Make your virtual event video-heavy
This might seem natural to most of you but it is important to make your event video-heavy. By putting a human element to the sessions, the engagement level naturally goes up.
Most virtual events feature live video seminars that are also available to be viewed on-demand later. Any decent virtual events platform will come with dedicated tools for handling the video end of the event and it might be a good idea to use them to your advantage as much as possible.
3. Use interactive tools like polls, Q&A, and live chat
Similarly, any great virtual events platform will also come with features that are meant to encourage engagement and participation.
Examples of these features include the ability to conduct polls, host a live Q&A session between the speaker and the attendees, and the ability to create a live chat between the attendees and the speakers or the hosts of the event.
Depending on what kind of virtual events ideas that you’re thinking of, you can use these features together in a way that resonates with your idea and actually creates a virtual experience and not just a virtual event.
5. Choose the right speakers that inspire
While you can use all the right features and the best tools, the quality of the speaker is still important when it comes to increasing your virtual events engagement levels.
By going with the right speakers that inspire participation, your virtual event’s engagement will naturally increase than if you used the wrong speakers.
6. Use personalized virtual booths and lobbies
Depending on the amount of flexibility provided by the virtual events platform you’re using, you can customize the look & feel of the virtual booths and lobbies.
It is natural that a number of different unique looking visitor booths and lobbies would be more engaging to attendees than several booths that look the same. The human mind naturally wants variety and if you really want to keep your attendees engaged, it might be a good idea to provide a fuller and more varied experience to them by also offering multiple ways to network & engage at these exhibition stalls.
7. Gamify the event
Lastly, one of the best ways to increase virtual events engagement ideas & tips generally is to add gamification elements to your virtual event.
Examples of gamification include running a contest through the entire event, running different games with prizes at the end, or having a “points” system that attendees can collect for participating in different parts of your event.
Just like the human mind likes variety, it is also naturally inclined towards games and finds it highly engaging and also winning.
One of the important virtual events benefits is that you can track the attendees a lot better which means it is possible to create gamification elements to your virtual events that would not be possible in the case of a physical event.
This is due to the fact that collecting, tracking, and measuring the activities of your attendees are much more detailed and precise when it comes to virtual events.
Make Your Virtual Event Memorable
The methods listed above are only some of the ways you can increase the engagement of your virtual events. However, at the end of the day, what makes an event truly engaging is a unique virtual experience that is truly engaging.
Even though it is important to use the features provided by your virtual event platform to maximize the engagement levels of your virtual event, it is also important to focus on the content.
The best virtual events feature unique, valuable, and interesting content while providing an interactive experience that is filled with engagement activities. It is tough to find the right mix between the two, especially since we’re living in an unprecedented and unpredictable time for virtual events.
However, for the time being, it really seems like virtual events are here to stay and your best bet is an amazing virtual event platform.