Just because your event is a virtual one, doesn’t mean it’s simple to execute. Your audience still needs to turn up and be engaged. The event needs to run smoothly and extend those brand values your company is trying to portray. If you get it wrong, the damage you could do to your brand’s perception could be long lasting.
Here are five things that could ruin a virtual event:
1. Tight timelines
We’d recommend a minimum of 6 weeks to organise everything around a virtual event. Setting up the registration page with all the relevant information is key, and carefully planning the communication steps from save the date, first invite, reminder and second reminder is another important aspect. It can be done more quickly, if you can move at pace and use agencies that are experts at what they do. Event agencies will have the people power, templated approaches and communication elements that you slot in to.
Then there’s the structure of the event; who are the speakers and what content do they require? Who will write or produce that content – remember content creation needs to be built into the timeline. Where will it be held? Will there be remote speakers? What technology do you need? What about branding the event broadcast? And don’t forget to consider the big 4: Lights, Camera, Sound and Network. we recenlty illusrated how to create a bullet-proof virtual event and how you can succeed.
2. Insufficient testing
Virtual events experience problems if there has been insufficient testing. Ensure you test the network where you’re streaming from, run a speed test and a test stream. If you have virtual speakers test their connection in the same place they will be presenting from. Corporate networks and different devices can wreak havoc to your live stream.
If you’re using slides check who’s controlling them and test that system. Test cameras and microphones before you go live to make sure everything is functioning as expected.
3. Boring format
Even if you have all the equipment and your technical knowledge is locked down you can suffer from audience drop-off if your content isn’t in the right format or just plain dull. A slideshow with someone talking in the background doesn’t keep audiences engaged unless the speaker is incredibly engaging or entertaining. Typical audience attention span is around 7 minutes, so consider interviews, cutting to pre-recorded videos or animations, polls, Q&As and multiple presenters to keep viewers engaged. Use animated graphics such as stings, bumpers and lower thirds to improve your production values and enhance viewer engagement.
4. Poor content
To truly engage audiences you need to have the right content for the audience you want to engage, delivered by prepared and professional speakers. Anything less and you can risk damaging your brand and wasting time and money. First you need to identify your audience, building personas can often help fully understand them, and identify what they like and need, along with aspects of their personality that may dictate your event structure. Then plan your content around these personas. What will the audience learn, what do they want to get out of it and what are the key take homes?
5. Unprepared speakers
Finally who is presenting the information, do they know the subject and are they comfortable on camera? You may want to consider a professional presenter/compere. They will research your topic, give a professional friendly face and keep the event on track if there are any unexpected interruptions.
With so much at stake, perhaps working with an events agency is best?
A creative marketing agency in London or beyond will have the expertise and can help you pre-plan all the technical elements of your event in advance and make sure that you achieve the quality and brand perception that you are looking for.
At Hub, we offer many different services in connection with live events which you can find on our Events page. Or why not contact us to talk about how we can help you achieve extraordinary audience engagement with your event.