April 10, 2023
The Dos and Don’ts of virtual event production
6 min read
Virtual events are becoming more and more popular, especially in recent years. Looking at how many online events are cropping up, it seems that you can turn an in-person event into an online one nice and easy. However, planning an event is no mean feat. Since WePlay Esports is a company well-known for its esports events, they know how to make sure that virtual live-streaming events are in no way inferior to physical ones.
What is a virtual event?
You probably already have been to a virtual event. A virtual conference, a workshop, or a tournament are all examples of virtual events. Instead of physically attending one, as is the case with in-person meetings, attendees can connect to a live event online, wherever it takes place. There are also hybrid events that combine both in-person events and the virtual world, allowing attendees to participate in-person or remotely.
Companies and individuals often choose digital events because of the many benefits.
- Global audiences. By hosting an online event, you make it easier for your fans to reach you. No matter where your fans are, they can join.
- More engagement tools. With proper management, you can be sure that no audience member is left behind. Members can participate in real-time polls, Q&A sessions, and other interactive activities and engagement opportunities.
- Flexible schedule. Life is hectic, so your fans may not be able to attend your event on time. But with an online platform, you can provide a recorded video, so they don’t miss anything.
Five best practices to help you hold a virtual event
As mentioned earlier, virtual events, like any other type of function, require meticulous planning. So here are five tips to pay attention to in the first place.
Rely on a partner with tech experience
Holding an in-person function, you look for event planners, who are in charge of finding and preparing the location, creating and sending invitations, timing, and so on. In case you want to gather people online, you need a virtual event production company. Partnering with a tech-savvy production studio can ensure a successful event by providing technical support, troubleshooting virtual event studios, and assistance with the event platform. They can also help identify any potential issues before the event and provide recommendations for improving the attendee experience.
Besides technical issues, an experienced partner will help you find the proper format and share their insights on activities you can use at your event. For example, they suggest the best platforms, locations, or event content.
Engagement is essential
The best way to make your event memorable is to make attendees feel engaged. While virtual platforms offer many tools to bring this goal to life, some online event organizers forget about it. One way to achieve a sufficient level of audience interaction is to use interactive tools such as polls, live Q&A sessions, and chat. These tools allow attendees to actively participate in the event and provide real-time feedback.
Moreover, you should not be limited only to the virtual platform. Use other available channels such as social media. Come up with a hashtag and encourage participants to share their unforgettable experiences on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter. You can even run a giveaway to support the idea.
Events can drag on for hours. And to be honest, they can be exhausting. At the same time, a function that’s too short will not bring you the benefits you expect. Therefore, it is important to think of an interesting format for the event, add a break, and fill it with pre-recorded content so the virtual audience can wind down, too. It is also important to understand who your target audience is based on their geographic location in order to decide on a time that’s convenient for them.
Make it simple and accessible to members
If you want to attract more members, make the process easy. Ideally, it should be just one link the visitor can click on to access the event. Hot tip: if you choose popular platforms, most likely some of your participants are already familiar with its functionality, and therefore it will be easier for them to understand the interface. And vice versa, the less popular the platform you choose, the higher the chances that your participants will not be able to figure out the interface and not join.
If you are considering a private event that includes a registration process, please make sure you provide clear instructions on how to access the event platform and any required technology.
Promote your event
Before you put on a show, you need to spread the word about it. In general, you need to warm up the audience, pique their interest, and be heard to attract more visitors. Create a comprehensive marketing strategy that includes a mix of paid and organic promotion. Promote the event through various channels such as social media, email, and targeted advertising. Social media is actually a great partner — you can create event-specific hashtags, share behind-the-scenes content, and showcase the value of attending the event. Industry influencers may help increase visibility, so research the niche to find the right partners.
What to avoid
As soon as virtual events became popular, there were a lot of them. However, along with interesting shows, boring events appeared, too, the names of which no one even remembers. Here are some of the most common mistakes that can cause an event to crash.
Attracting new fans with an online event is a great idea. However, it is one thing to attract visitors and quite another to keep those fans. Therefore, even when you have had an amazing event, there is no time to bask in its success. It’s better to immediately start planning the next virtual function. The ideal plan is to create a series of virtual events that complement each other, offering a continuous stream of valuable information and networking opportunities.
To be successful, you need to stand out from your competitors. By creating similar run-of-the-mill events, the company runs the risk of getting lost in the shuffle with a million others. Use all possible ways to enhance the visitor’s interactive online experience. For example, augmented reality technology will add immersiveness to the event.
Forget to collect data
Data collection and analysis are essential to understanding visitor behavior and preferences and can help you improve future events. Online platforms allow you to collect and analyze the performance of an event. By the way, it is much easier to collect data for an online show than for an in-person event. Analyze comments in the live chat, track what was your broadcast’s peak moment, or vice versa, when there was a decline in activity.
Preparing the entire event alone
Even if you are no stranger to traditional events, organizing a virtual event can be a daunting task. This is especially true for the technical side of the issue. In this case, it’s worth delegating part of the work to partners. Therefore, it’s important to build partnerships or consult with virtual event producers to ensure the success of your event.
Virtual events offer a number of benefits and require careful planning and execution. To host a successful virtual event, it is important to maintain engagement, meet deadlines, ensure accessibility, market the event effectively, and partner with a tech-savvy vendor. It will also be a big plus to create not one, but a series of events. And if at the same time, you learn how to collect and analyze the data, you will reach your event goals.