How to host a virtual conference


Eight strategies for hosting a virtual conference

  1. Choose a theme that makes sense. Without the anchor of a physical location to fall back on, it can be especially difficult to place virtual conference sessions in a …
  2. Include live video. One of the most effective ways to drive attendee engagement is through live video sessions. …
  3. Be interactive. Create opportunities to interact with attendees through live question-and-answer sessions as well as tools like polls, activities, or even quizzes.
  4. Run rehearsals. With so many potential points of failure, it’s almost certain that you’ll run into a few technical hitches when organizing a virtual conference.
  5. Keep it simple. Just because you’re unable to host an in-person conference doesn’t mean you need to meticulously re-create the entire event in a virtual sense.
  6. Encourage networking. Social distancing makes it more difficult to be, well, social, but this doesn’t mean a virtual conference can’t offer the same networking opportunities you’d find at an …
  7. Use social media as a virtual lounge. During a virtual conference, social media sites like Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram are where conversations between attendees are most likely to take …
  8. Consider the setting. Reach out to your speakers ahead of time to discuss where they might be able to broadcast or film their sessions from.
10 tips for hosting virtual events
  1. Set clear goals from the start. …
  2. Choose the right platform to host your virtual event. …
  3. Choose the right time for your event. …
  4. Promote your virtual event. …
  5. Develop a clear agenda that includes speakers and timeframes. …
  6. Include moderators at your event. …
  7. Engage your audience. …
  8. Prepare to troubleshoot.

Is hosting a virtual conference right for You?

If you or your organization already offer a face-to-face conference, hosting a virtual conference can be be a natural way to reach even more people. If you don’t currently offer any sort of conference, launching a virtual conference can be a great way to expand your portfolio of offerings, attract new customers, and generate new revenue.

How do you attract attendees to your virtual conference?

If you want to attract attendees, keep them coming back time after time, and grow your virtual conference into a valuable asset for your business, you need to put the right technology in place and take some basic steps to get the most out of the medium.

How do I host a successful online conference?

In this post, I offer tips for hosting a successful online conference based off of my own experience as well as experience working with a long list of clients that host virtual conferences. So, let’s get started. 1. Add strong context to your content 2. Make it easy for others to market 3. Mix in meaningful social 4. Use at least some live video 5.

How to Plan Your Goals for a virtual conference?

When planning your goals for a virtual conference, succinctness is important. It is more challenging to attempt to achieve multiple, segmented goals when virtual. Instead, create a single goal that drives the mission of the virtual conference. There are two different streams to look at when creating goals – business goals and attendee goals.


How do I set up a virtual conference?

What do I need to run a virtual conference?Define your conference strategy. You need to start by clearly outlining your target audience and who you want to attend your conference. … Prepare the content. … Choose your platform. … Market your conference. … Enable your attendees to network and interact.

How do you host a virtual conference on Zoom?

Technical team checklistSet up meeting and/or webinar settings. Work with the presentation team to clearly define and enable settings for each session — for example, if Q&A is enabled or if attendees can chat.Enable practice session. … Invite panelists. … Schedule a dry run. … Set up livestreaming. … Plan who will record the event.

What’s the difference between Zoom meeting and webinar?

Meetings are designed to be a collaborative event with all participants being able to screen share, turn on their video and audio, and see who else is in attendance. Webinars are designed so that the host and any designated panelists can share their video, audio and screen. The host can also unmute attendees.

How do you have a successful virtual conference?

Virtual events take just as much advance planning as a traditional conference. … Time zones still matter – make sure participants aren’t shut out by being in the wrong time zone. … Provide both synchronous and asynchronous content during the virtual event.

What is virtual conference?

In many ways a virtual conference can and should mirror what happens at a face-to-face conference. By having elements like keynote presentations, breakouts, and opportunities for networking, you’ll align with learner expectations and increase the chances that they will take a chance on a virtual event.

What are the criticisms of virtual events?

Mix in meaningful social. One of the typical criticisms of virtual events is that you don’t manage to get the same networking and interaction that you do with face-to-face events.

What do vendors want?

What most vendors want is a well qualified audience – that is a group of people who clearly possess the characteristics of the vendor’s target customers. If you can offer the chance to get in front of such a group, then you can greatly increase the efficiency of the vendor’s sales process – and that is valuable.

What is the best way to differentiate your event as a professional effort?

Providing for clear, competent learner support is one of the main ways you can differentiate your event as a professional effort. And, if you want to position it as a premium offering, you definitely need to provide good support.

Can you skip a face to face conference?

One of the big advantages of a face-to-face conference is that the attendees are essentially “captive.” Yes, they can skip out on sessions if they need to, but the fact that they are physically present greatly increases the chances that they will participate in most of the experience.

Can you work with vendors as sponsors?

Depending on your business, working with vendors as sponsors may not be a part of your current business model. A virtual conference offers a great opportunity to expand into this area.

Is virtual conference more risky?

In my experience, virtual conferences are significantly less risky and time-intensive than many of the alternatives, but that doesn’t mean they are easy and that they don’t take time. If I were to add a tip to the list above it would be “ Start well in advance !”

What happens after a virtual conference?

After the virtual conference ends, many webinar tools will automatically send out an event recording and transcript to attendees and registrants. Consider if you’d like that recording to be accessible forever, or only for a set period of time.

Why are online conferences important?

Online conferences are an excellent way for newer companies to increase their brand recognition while also generating revenue by selling products during the online conference or charging a registration fee.

Why are agendas important for conferences?

Agendas are helpful in learning how to host a virtual content since they provide an outline of how you’ll transition from one subject or speaker to another.

Is webinar jam good?

WebinarJam is a good choice for virtual conferences that include live offers and those that rely heavily on attendee engagement and participation. Note, however, that it only offers live webinars, not automated ones. WebinarJam offers three paid plans ranging in price from $499/year to $999/year.

Can you host a virtual conference in 2020?

It also left many companies wondering how to host a virtual conference, as they needed to quickly make the transition from in-person events to online ones. Many companies, especially those unsure of how to host a successful virtual conference in 2020, opted to completely cancel these events instead. But now that remote work and online-only events …

Can you host an in person event without setting up the stage?

You wouldn’t host an in-person event without setting up the stage to reflect your brand — so make sure you pay an equal amount of attention to setting up your virtual background.

Can you host a webinar in 2020?

While there are some free webinar platforms available, they don’t have the features required to host a large-scale virtual conference in 2020. It’s best to go with a paid virtual event platform that has all the features you need.

The Key Elements of a Virtual Conference

When thinking about how to host a virtual event you will bring together many of the same elements needed for a physical event, only with a bit more technology and creativity, and minus the food (but you’re probably making better food at home than at the convention center anyway).

The Technology You Need to Host a Virtual Conference

The bad news is no single software platform today offers everything you need to run a virtual conference in one place. The good news though is that there’s a simple combination of two that work together beautifully to deliver not just a virtual conference, but a conference and community.

A Virtual Conference Setup and Schedule–An Example

Now that you have the pieces and technology you need to host a virtual conference, it’s helpful to see a concrete example of a virtual conference schedule and set up.

Think Bigger With a Virtual Conference

Hopefully, this guide offers a few concrete ways for how to host a virtual conference today when we need this type of programming and human connection the most.

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What is a Virtual Conference?

People often confuse a virtual conference with a virtual meeting or a meeting. Generally, virtual conferences are hosted online and include live sessions, panel discussions, demos, and more. The purpose of virtual conferences is lead and demand generation, adoption and retention, brand awareness, and relationship building.

How do you create a virtual conference strategy?

You will come across many free webinar platforms online. Although they are free, they do not provide all the requisite features needed to host a large-scale virtual conference. Here is a checklist that you must run through before choosing your pick:

Parting Thoughts

And finally, don’t be afraid to go virtual. The world is changing rapidly and you will need to buckle up and pace up with its offerings. As you rebuild your event programs and look to the future, take advantage of virtual events and experiences. Follow these six steps and you are halfway through a stellar virtual conference anyways.

What are the benefits of hosting a virtual conference?

In fact, hosting a virtual conference has all kinds of benefits, including: Improving your authority in your niche. Meeting new interesting people.

Why do you host an online conference?

One of the many benefits of hosting an online conference is that it can drastically boost your email list. Then, in the future, you can use this list to help your overall email marketing strategy. You could: Send information about new content related to the conference.

Can LearnDash be used for virtual conferences?

But as you can imagine, the same technology can be used to enhance your virtual conference. LearnDash will let you give your attendees follow-up materials after the conference. That creates even more value for attending and makes the whole experience feel more professional.

How to find speakers for a conference?

Your speakers should be industry experts in their domains and must have sufficient knowledge about the topic under discussion. Following are a few ways through which you can hunt the potential speakers for your next virtual conference: 1 You can ask attendees whom they like to see through social media polls 2 Talk to people in your network or find experts within your own organization 3 Reach out to influential leaders in your industry through Linked-In 4 Find keynote speakers through Google and shoot out emails to them

Can you have live sessions on a virtual conference?

Is it going to feature live or prerecorded sessions? No matter what you choose, you can still have multiple creative and innovative formats for your virtual conference: either run an hour-long workshop or a webinar with multiple sessions on multiple days followed by a Q&A session or polls. The options are endless. Alternatively, you can host virtual tours, AMA’s (ask me anything), panel discussions, demonstrations, roundtables, sponsored event sessions, and giveaways. It all depends on your topic, time, and budget allocation.

Is virtual event hosting good?

The success of your event depends greatly on the choice of your event hosting platform. Therefore, choosing the right virtual event hosting platform is a plus. It can not only host events for you but also market them across industries. Whether it’s a small conference or a large-scale event, a good hosting platform can always get the job done. Ask yourself the following questions before finalizing your decision:

What is the purpose of virtual conferences?

The purpose of virtual conferences is lead and demand generation, adoption and retention, brand awareness, and relationship building . A virtual conference is a great alternative, or companion for hybrid events, to an in-person conference.

Why are virtual conferences important?

Virtual conferences offer planners and marketers a way to connect with a broader audience, often leading to higher registration numbers than in-person events as travel and cost are no longer burdens attendees must bear. In our new normal, virtual events have taken over.

How many sessions can you have in a virtual conference?

Don’t be afraid to cut the number of sessions for a virtual conference – where you might have more than a hundred sessions at an in-person conference, it’s not unusual to cut that down to 20 when going virtual.

What is event data?

1. Event Data: This is basic data that describes the event itself. Event type, cost, date, location, registration counts, etc. are examples of event data. Capturing event data for your virtual events allows you to compare the virtual event’s performance with virtual events, as well as its in-person counterparts.

Is a virtual conference the same as an in person conference?

Virtual conferences aren’t all that different than in-person conferences. In fact, much of the planning is the same – from website creation to registration to email marketing – the basics are all in place. But, with virtual conferences, a larger emphasis must be placed on technology.


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