from Planning to Hosting
New to hosting a virtual event aligning to your business goals? Read further to get some ideas before you and your team begin your long and potentially perilous virtual event planning journey.
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What is a Virtual Event?
Virtual Event Platform in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic
A virtual event, or more commonly known as the online event, is an organised gathering that takes place on the internet. Without requiring people to come together and meet up at a physical location, virtual events allow individuals from all over the world to experience the event and its content online by staying at where they are.
Living in the current COVID-impacted world, we are no stranger to virtual events. Since the government has enforced the stay-at-home and work-from-home order, people ain’t going anywhere but online.
With virtual events being a niche aspect of the event industry, many individuals and corporate bodies have slowly transformed their businesses to the online platform for wider outreach. To make the most out of the online or virtual events for your business, check out this collection of resources to outstand them.
8 Most Common Types of Virtual Events
Odds are you’ve participated in a virtual conference, watched a live stream, or maybe attended a webinar. You might even have joined an online baking class from the comfort of your kitchen at home. New to hosting a virtual event aligning to your business goals? Read further to get some ideas before you and your team begin your long and potentially perilous virtual event planning journey.
With so many types of virtual events to choose from, your first task is to identify who is your target audience and which type of virtual events can bring the best out of your business.
To make it easier for you, here we’ve compiled a quick guide on the defining features of each virtual event type listed above.
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Video conferencing tool is dedicated to connecting two or more points across the internet for two-way conferencing face-to-face, and in real-time, over distance. It usually caters for a relatively small group of people for private meetings. Thanks to virtual event software today, many come with the recording capabilities.
Anywhere & Anytime
Business partners and employees can now go completely online by just tuning in from anywhere in the world — saving time, saving energy.
Naturally more engaging than phone meetings, a virtual conference is now a standard practice among many modern companies. Adopt any virtual event software and you will most likely be able to share screen, document, whiteboard and videos.
Not only does it offer you an efficient way of delivering presentations, but it also results in greater productivity and engagement than what you would typically achieve from phone meetings. This is so because everyone in the virtual conference is granted with the same permissions to speak up and participate other than just listening in.
Well, the dark side of this event type is that a virtual conference is not good for growing an audience. So, it is most suitable for business meetings whose goal is not to extend outreach but to discuss and share ideas within a private group, such as business partner meetings, internal work meetings and private meetings with clients.
Specially curated for private training in a one-to-many delivery style, webinars are somewhat online seminar that attendees listen to and/or watch on the internet via computer or phone. It typically takes place for 1 to 2 hours to teach the attendees something.
Evenesis Webinar 3rd edition
Often used for marketing presentations and educational sessions, these events are perfect for larger groups. Though the attendees are not allowed to speak during the session, they are able to speak up or ask questions in the chat feature.
This controlled Q&A tool can help greatly in giving the host more control and assigning roles to event helpers in answering questions not addressed by the host. With that said, a teaching session can be conducted in a focused environment with no distractions.
The bright side for hosting webinars include how quickly you can grow your email list and how your event can offer focused value. It’s also user-friendly as anyone interested can join the webinar by clicking on the link shared. Not to mention, you can save up from paying the travel and accommodation allowance for your presenter.
However, body language and non-verbal cues may be missing as the presenter is using slides in most cases. If you have issues such as PowerPoint crashing, you may lose your audience.
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Virtual summits are online multi-speakers event in which several experts in a certain field are brought together to address a specific topic. A host will interview them and this online event can be launched over the course of a series of days for a large audience.
Virtual summits are the next step up from webinars. Aside from the event duration, they differ in the tool used. Virtual summits require registration tool. They are private events attendees sign up for, whereby attendees’ profile data, and sometimes, payment, is collected.
Secure Event Payment
To put confidence in your attendees for this process, the data and payment collection method pops up to be a good question. It is necessary for you to ensure that sensitive data like email addresses and credit card information is protected. You ought to research and make an educated decision on which virtual event software and platform that is the most ideal to host your summit.
Dedicated access for participants
Pro tip! You can go for a virtual event software to capture email addresses and payment and then run your summit session, be it live or recorded, in a closed virtual event platform. With that, every participant who signed up for the event will receive a unique password via email or message to join and view the summit content. This unique password cannot be shared with anyone and can only be logged in with one account.
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Let’s take Shopee Seller Summit 2020 as reference. It is Shopee’s first-ever attempt to gather their current and potential merchants on an online event platform for 8 continuous hours with ticket priced at RM25. Themed Emerging Stronger: Challenges & Opportunities Amid Covid-19, this virtual summit successfully invited several industry leaders alongside Shopee’s senior management personnel to discuss on the future possibility of e-commerce.
With this type of virtual event, you will be able to grow your audience with like-minded people and have the potential to generate revenue. However, a virtual summit can be time-consuming to set up and hence, you need help in getting the moving pieces in place.
Widely used to reach people en masse, live streaming is one-way delivery, but a two-way conversation. Known as the must-have strategy for marketing in 2021, live streaming can be done to conduct online workshops, online concerts, online talk shows, virtual keynotes and live consultations, either publicly or privately.
Video from our first Virtual/ Hybrid Event – July 2020
Ranging from easy to hold (lower quality) to hard to hold (TV broadcast quality), it depends on how professional and formal you would wish to present yourself. It has a flexible nature for you to do however you want. Through live events on social media channels, the public can connect with brands in a more authentic, instant, and spontaneous manner.
Many brands and businesses have invested in live streaming, showing the public what’s behind-the-scenes or making special product announcements or launches. This type of virtual event has the power to expand the viewership of an event, which consequently reaches audiences of unprecedented scale.
On top of that, you may record the live streaming and repurpose. Some live streaming platform allows replays to be available immediately on social platforms. This feature is extremely great for connecting with customers, growing a new audience or even conducting interviews.
Virtual Events Vs In-Person Events
Usually handwritten sign-in cheat, which takes time to conduct analysis and later identify target prospects.
Wider outreach to showcase your brand and boost traffic to your business.
Conducive for social networking as people perform handshakes, exchange eye contact and enjoy happy hours together.
Cost-effective as traditional expenses are eliminated.
More expensive as operating cost is incurred.
Virtual events remain on your website or social platforms all year round.
A finite shelf life of 2 to 3 days.
Organiser/Sponsor may post merchandise to attendees but the postal address is required.
Attendees may collect merchandise as a door gift.
While some see virtual events as the replica of physical location-based event, we couldn’t highlight more about the additional skills necessary in creating an impactful event that extends well beyond a computer/phone screen. They still require as much planning and methods of interaction as in-person meetings. Regretfully, it comes as no surprise that 65% of planners have never taken part in the virtual event planning process.
Solutions for your Virtual Event
Through a virtual environment, event organisers, speakers, attendees and sponsors interact, share ideas and enjoy a shared experience remotely. For a seamless experience and building communities online, many have turned to virtual event platforms like Evenesis. Wondering what virtual event solutions Evenesis can offer for your event? Let’s take a look at the following highlights:
Why is Hosting a Virtual Event a Better Option Now?
Virtual events are nothing new as they’ve been happening since nearly 30 years ago. Thanks to affordable technologies and virtual event software, literally anyone can hold an online gathering, regardless of budget or expertise.
Due to the pandemic, the world is pivoting to virtual more and more. Seeing the number of Covid cases rising day by day, we know that it’s a rough time to be planning and holding a large-scale physical event.
Many pre-planned physical conferences or campaigns are either postponed or forced to call a halt in order to help combat the novel coronavirus. Hence, virtual events are a great alternative to physical events.
As human movement is being restricted to flatten the curve, making people travel to a physical event venue is difficult, considering the trouble and quarantine fees that may incur. It is also near to impossible for people to come out from the red zones to attend your event in person according to the community isolation measures.
Consequently, in-person events are now temporarily sidelined. The good news is, people of the pandemic times feel more of a drive than ever to meet, be social, learn, and connect with one another. That’s where virtual events step in with a virtual platform for them to socialise virtually.
In addition to that, virtual conferences can help significantly in building brand awareness, extending networking opportunities, increasing lead generation, and more.
When everything goes digital, promoting your event or partners’ brands prior to the actual day becomes so much easier and more cost-effective. You no longer have to spend on the printing costs for flyers, buntings, banners and booklets. You will be able to leverage Google tools in learning about the ROI of ads, and hence, deciding how to spend on SEO, SEM and SMM.
Besides, travel costs that could have prevented key speakers, talents and VIPs from being able to attend a live event are no longer an issue. Not to mention the expenses on venue, accommodation, transport, logistics, F&B and so on, which in return allows you to invest more on a superb virtual event software in curating the best virtual event possible.
Best of all, you get to learn about your event as well as the attendees’ behaviour with a comprehensive virtual event software. The secured and encrypted database management gives you valuable data from the stage of planning to hosting a virtual event.
You may also keep track who is tuning in online, which session has the most questions, who is the most engaged and who is not during the session. This set of data, when used in good hands, can give you the means to make your next event better. It can also be music to sponsors’ ears, helping you to secure the best ones for the upcoming online event.
All in all, it sums up to the three main types of data that would be beneficial to how you grow your business next.
- Event data (Date, time, cost, etc. )
- Profile data (Attendees’ demography, contact, email, etc.)
- Engagement data (Session attendance, sponsor, feedback, etc.)
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“Evenesis helps to make all my works to be fully automated. It helps participants to register online and I’m as trainer can simply view the list of registered participants easily.
Email and SMS reminder so easy to be used as they can be scheduled ahead of time. With integrated online payment gateway, every payment received is consolidated into one account.”
– JOHAN IRWAN, Founder/Coach Leap Leadership Academy
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Fast response time
A great tool to minimize the event registration & e-ticket production work, at the same time to speed up the check-in process without queues.
The system provides a friendly interface & has a wide range of functions to deliver an enhanced event experience to both organizer & participants.
We have made positive progress by adopting automation through Evenesis. Life’s much easier after that.
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