When you’re planning your virtual event, you have a lot of different things to consider. You need to make sure the meeting runs smoothly and that participants feel comfortable talking about sensitive topics. You also want to give your attendees the best possible experience. That means creating an atmosphere that will encourage them to stay engaged for the duration of the meeting.
To help you plan your virtual events, we’ve identified six key factors that will help make your meetings as successful as possible. If you follow these tips, your guests will be more likely to enjoy their time at your meetings, which will increase the likelihood they’ll come back again in the future.
Create a meeting culture from the start
When you set up your virtual event, it’s important to create a meeting culture right from the start. This is not something that happens after a few meetings. It’s something you build over time, so it’s not something you rush. Creating a meeting culture means thinking about the overall experience your participants will have at your events. It means thinking about how they will feel when they attend, and what they will take away from the experience.
To make your virtual event more engaging, think about the details ahead. This is where you may create awesome flyers in minutes, send designed online invitations, or offer some perks they will get after they join your event.
Have clear goals for your meetings
Many virtual events are open-ended. This is fine if you’re planning a course that lasts just one day. But if you’re planning a longer program, you need to set clear goals for your events. Participants will be able to measure the success of your meeting against these goals. This will help them see whether or not your meeting was a success.
In addition to setting goals for your virtual events, you should also set goals for your meetings themselves. You might have one goal in mind while your users have absolutely different goals. There’s no need to have a conflict during your meetings, but having both sets of users aware of what their goals are can help keep things on track.
Set expectations with attendees prior to the event
Before you send out an invitation to your virtual event, you should make sure you’re clear about the expectations for the meeting. This is especially important for any sensitive topics you plan to discuss. It’s easy to send out an invite to your meeting that says, “Everyone is welcome to come!” But if you send the invite to a group that is sensitive to the topic, this might be a problem.
You’ll want to be clear with your participants about what is and is not acceptable. If you know that a certain group is likely to attend your meeting, you can be a bit more lenient about what is acceptable.
Use video and audio tools during the meeting
The most successful virtual events include tools that will let your participants interact with one another during your meetings. This can extend the time participants spend together, and it can encourage participants to engage more with your content. If you’re hosting a virtual event, you should consider using tools that let your participants communicate with one another. This can help them stay engaged with the meeting.
It can also help you stay in touch with participants who might otherwise be difficult to reach. You can use tools like Skype, Google Hangouts, or Zoom to let your audience communicate with one another. You can also use tools like Zoom or Screenhero to let them record and distribute their presentations, or tools like Zoom or WebEx to let participants record and participate in a virtual meeting.
Don’t forget about after-meeting follow-up
After you host a virtual event, you need to make sure you don’t just put the meeting behind, and forget about it. You need to follow up with participants, make sure they know how to access the content you provided, and remind them of upcoming virtual events. You can send participants a link to a list page that includes all the online content you provided them. You can also follow up with them via email, social media, or another method. Make sure you follow up with your audience.
Virtual events are a great way to connect with customers, employees, and partners in a meaningful way. They’re also a great opportunity to train new employees, whether they’re at your company or someone else’s. When you host a virtual event, keep these tips in mind to make sure your participants have the best possible experience.
Create a meeting culture that encourages engagement. Set clear goals for your meetings, and set expectations with participants prior to the event. Use video and audio tools during the meeting. Don’t forget about the after-meeting follow-up. And lastly, make sure you follow up with your audience after your virtual events.