Organizing online events may be new to you, but there’s no need to find the prospect of doing so intimidating!
So what is an online event? Simply put, an online event is any event that is hosted online. Using online platforms, more and more events are now being hosted remotely rather than in a central physical location. They can be anything from workshops to courses to virtual meetups to conferences and more.
If you’re uncertain how to approach setting organizing one, just give these few tips a read!
1. Be Original
First things first, decide what you want your virtual event to be about. If you’re trying to attract a large audience, make sure to choose an original topic. Why should people attend your event or listen to you when you are in saturated marking, doing and talking about the same things as everyone else? That’s not to say that you can’t succeed in a popular area though; just find a niche. Last, sure to also tailor your virtual event to your own brand and strengths.
2. Make a Plan
Once you know what you want your event to be about, it’s time to start making a plan. Set a date and a time for it first. Be sure to consider what will work best for the most people; avoid major holidays or other days people may be busy, and think about how times may work for people in different time zones. As for the length of the event, you want your event to be long enough for substantial interaction, but not long enough that people’s interest will wane. The ideal length will vary from event to event.
Next, decide what format you want for your online event. Do you want it to be all live, or do you want to include pre-recorded elements? If you are planning on more of a presenter-centric event like a course or conference, think about if you want a single presenter or multiple? Will it be an interview, and ask me anything, a product demo?
Last, you’ll need to choose a platform on which to host your event from. These days, there are many options. Perhaps the most well-known or popular right now is Zoom. The software can work for both group meetings where everyone participates in conversation as well as talks where one presenter is the main focus and others simply join in to listen or submit questions. GoBuddy is another fantastic option. The webstore and booking site allows users to list their events on an online marketplace and provides video conferencing tools that don’t require any additional app downloads.
3. Promote the Event
Promoting your event can be done simply enough by posting about it on social media. Be sure to include links in your posts to a site where people can register for your event. If you already have an email list, include information about your event in newsletters you send out.
4. Do Prep Work
Make sure you put in adequate preparation for your event! For example, even great speakers may not be used to doing online events. Without the energy of an in-person crowd, they may find it harder to keep up the same banter. For this reason, practice is a must! You should also do a dry run before the actual day-of as it provides a chance to test all the software and troubleshoot any issues. Even if things all work during your dry run, it’s still a good idea to have a plan for what to do if anything does go wrong during your event so you won’t be scrambling in the case that it does.
5. Engage your Audience
When an event only has a one-directional flow and it’s just a presenter speaking at an audience, it’s easy for the audience to lose focus. Keep your attendees connected by involving them with polls, quizzes, questions, and games! Another simple way to ensure you start off well is to simply begin on time. If you’re late, you’ll already be losing people’s interest from the start.
6. Make it Inclusive
If you want to reach a larger audience, consider being more mobile-friendly so more people will have access. Ensure any software features you plan to use in your event work on mobile versions as well and try to think about any other considerations you may have to make for phone usage. For example, if you are showing any presentations, use a large font size so the text will still be readable on smaller phone screens.
7. Follow up with a Survey
Getting in touch with your attendees after the event and asking for feedback is the easiest way to improve in the future. Doing so allows you to hear first-hand what worked well and what didn’t. If you use a software like GoBuddy to run your event, built-in communication features can make reaching out to your attendees can be really simple!