On average, people spend about 59 hours per week online. This amounts to 128 days online per year.
Since most people are already spending so much time online, you might be considering hosting your next event online too.
This guide will discuss everything you should know about how to host a virtual event. Keep reading to learn more.
Know Your Audience
Before planning your event, you should have a clear understanding of what kind of audience you want. Knowing the challenges they face and how you can help them will lead to a successful virtual event.
Knowing who you want at your event will make it much easier to know who to reach out to and get more people to attend it. Answer these questions before you move to the next step.
Make a List of Goals
The best virtual event will have an established set of goals and a plan to meet these goals on the event day.
Set specific goals you can attain and measure concretely. Your set of goals should also be relevant to the main topic of the event. A professional skills conference should aim to teach attendees ways to improve their interview skills.
Create an Event Message
Your virtual event should also have a concise message that speaks to the intended audience. You’ll want to create a unique logo and message that’ll attract people to the event.
A women’s conference should reinforce the idea of women’s liberation and empowerment. Use hashtags and slogans relating to this message on your event website to get more people to sign up for it. The website should also include information about you and why you care about this topic.
Ask For Help Planning the Event
Important event planning tips include asking for help. Hosting a virtual event requires an extra set of skills you might not have.
Ask some of your peers about their experience with virtual events, what they liked about them and what they didn’t. Ask some of these peers if they can help with the organization of the event, whether that includes the technology side or formatting specific sections of the event.
Have a technology expert with you to ensure the event goes on without a glitch and there aren’t any delays on the day of.
Find the Right Hosting Platform
The kind of event you’re planning will determine what kind of platform works best. Some platforms make it easy to co-host with another person.
You might want a platform that offers live commentary and interaction with guests. The ability to have guests chime in and ask questions is another component you might want for your virtual event. Keep all these points in mind when choosing a platform for your event.
Consider Different Topics
Another important part of online event planning is choosing the right topics. While you might have a general message and theme for your event, you want to consider a few different topics to keep your online audience engaged throughout the day.
You want to choose specific topics that match the overall theme of the event. In a virtual women’s conference, you might choose a few different topics relating to women’s issues. You can have panel discussions about women in the media or women in the workplace.
Choose topics people will want to learn more about.
Format the Event
This is one of the most important parts of planning an online event. The way you format the event will determine how successful it is.
You can choose one or two hosts sharing their knowledge on specific topics relating to the event. You can also choose to host a panel of experts, asking them multiple questions about the theme of the event.
Make sure you include a Q&A section, so you’re guests get all of their questions answered as well.
Promote as Much as Possible
Virtual event planning also requires promoting your event. While your event website will include a link to buy tickets, you should start sending invites to your email lists as early as you can.
College events might get a boost from hanging posters around campus. Have active social media accounts where you post reminders about the event to get people excited to attend.
Reach out to people who’ve attended similar events because they might be interested in attending yours.
Choose the Right Streaming Equipment
Hosting a virtual event also means using the right streaming equipment. Quality cameras and microphones are vital if you want to have a clear image and sound. This is especially important if you’ll be hosting the majority of the event, you don’t want to spend an hour speaking with lagging audio.
Depending on your setup, you might need a tripod to keep your camera steady as you stream. Make sure you have additional lighting as well. Use natural lighting if you can, but panel lighting and ring lights will help brighten up the room.
Test It Out Before the Event Day
Another crucial part of hosting a virtual event is testing your tech and equipment the day before and the day of. Check cameras, microphones, lighting, and wifi before starting.
You don’t want to delay the start of your event because you’re dealing with technology issues. This might cause some guests to leave, make sure everything works properly so this doesn’t occur.
How to Host a Virtual Event Explained
If you want to learn how to host a virtual event, follow the tips in this guide. Make sure you have the right equipment and have a list of goals before you start planning.
Check out some of the other technology blogs on our site if you found useful tips in this one.