With 2021 finally upon us, it’s important to get ahead of the game in the ideation process for your next virtual event. People are expecting 2021 to be bigger and better than before so it’s important to find ways to take your event to the next level. Below are a few valuable ideas for creating an engaging and memorable virtual event this year.
Live games and competitions are the perfect way to keep your audience involved throughout your event. Whether it’s in-between sessions, an entire session itself (happy hour, perhaps?), or an ongoing social media challenge, this is a fun and valuable way for your attendees to stay engaged. Custom themed trivia is one of the most popular games used within virtual events. You can even consider taking polls throughout the event to encourage attendees to interact during down time. One of our favorite interactive platforms that is perfect for any happy hour event and incorporates a ton of fun games is Hermis. A few popular game options on this platform include themed bingo, scavenger hunts, charades, and themed trivia. You can check it out here -> https://herm.is/.
Go big with your virtual event and elevate the production value. There are so many virtual event platforms/ simulations now that create a gamified version of the event for attendees to explore and interact in (check out the platform Virbela here: https://www.virbela.com/ ). If you aren’t interested in the more gamified virtual event, consider taking your video production for your event to the next level. Virtual event producers are able to work behind the scenes to ensure a smooth event and professional appearance. They are also able to produce higher quality videos/livestreams which elevates your event and makes it look more like a tv production. Consider using animation and visuals throughout sessions to keep the audience engaged and keep the production value up. One of our incredible video production partners, Orange Thread, creates such unique and professional results (learn more about Orange Thread here: http://orangethreadlive.com/). Especially for paid events, attendees are expecting the event to feel different than a typical Zoom call.
Virtual events are most effective in a less lengthy and more thought provoking setting. Experience has shown that shorter virtual events are more impactful to the audience. Reduce the amount of sessions per day and/or make more sessions available on-demand. This way the audience is able to access that extra information post-event, but it doesn’t take away from the effectiveness during the event. It is hard for attendees to stay focused online for more than 2 or 3 sessions a day. If your event does need to be more lengthy to satisfy all of your event goals, make sure to space out the sessions throughout the week and include breaks and entertainment segments to keep attendees engaged and energized.
Adding a personalized element brings your virtual event to life by giving attendees something memorable and makes the event feel more like an in-person and interactive event. Having promotional items from the event sent to each attendee is a great way to advertise for your next event as well. We work closely with our partner at Hip Hues to create incredible swag boxes that include customized items (learn more about Hip Hues here: https://bookwitheva.com/artists/hiphuesexperiences ). Don’t want to do the typical t-shirt, pen, or notebook route? Send your attendees custom items that go with a specific experience. Maybe the happy hour session features a mixology or cooking class and each attendee receives ingredients for that class. This may seem like an afterthought to you at first, but these small touches can really create brand loyalty. Plus, it builds excitement for the events you host in the future (so a win-win)!