An online event is just another form of event. Adapting to the unknown and unexpected is part of the job description of an event organizer, so learning how to switch online should not be anything that can’t be figured out in our business. But we are here to make it a bit easier for you.
So, let’s start at the beginning. The basics are still the same. Create an interesting program, put together an experienced technical team that you can trust, pinpoint the potential problems and be prepared for all kinds of surprises. Many other elements such as promotion, registration, schedule and attendee pampering are quite the same, yet the obvious difference is that you do not need the venue, catering, hospitality, and other venue-related elements. It does sound easy when we simplify the basics however there are many differences from an in-person event. The most obvious one is that there is no direct contact with attendees so human interaction is something worth putting a bit more effort to. To help you with the transition, we gathered some of our findings to look out for.
Environment and time: Keep it short
When creating an online event program we should keep in mind that it should be shorter than hybrid or in-person events. The attention span behind a screen is not the same as in live events. Even most Holywood movies with multi-million budgets hardly keep people interested for longer periods. We recommend not to make single sessions longer than you would stay behind a screen for a movie. Break your program into multiple days or fill it with time gaps for relaxation, creativity, or recharging.
Technical plan: Is my mic on? Can you hear me?
The most used phrase in online events. So how do we prevent those types of hiccups? This is where an experienced technical team comes in place. They will have to be well versed in the streaming process, use the right conferencing tools and master the video production. Visual overlays, graphic elements and video directing are key elements of every online event. But you will have to be aware of one crucial thing: everything depends on the internet connection and speed. This is why you must check the bandwidth of the technical team location and make checks with every speaker, testing their camera, microphone, presentation, and internet connection.
Content: How to pack it all up?
This is the place where platforms such as Confiva come in handy. As in-person events have many sponsors, break-out rooms, and other interactions, we have to pick the right online environment to not only host all the content but to offer a clear overview of it and make it interesting for the participants. Connecting your attendees to content other than your video stream can be a pain if they have to move to other websites. Online event platforms such as Confiva encompass everything in one place with clear connections to any of your attendee interests. Also, with help of showrooms, we do not only take care of the engagement of the participants but also offer exposure to potential sponsors of the event.
So, with that, the basics are covered and we are sure that you can now at least roughly imagine what an online event looks like and what you need to think about when organizing one.