How to run a successful virtual conference


How to run a virtual conference and keep it engaging

  1. Keep your sessions short. If you run a 3hr session on one topic, people will get bored and log off. …
  2. Provide interactive content. Encourage the audience to participate.
  3. Select the right speakers. When selecting your speakers, keep in mind your target audience to make sure you choose people who will keep the attendees listening.
  4. Hire an experienced host. …
What do I need to run a virtual conference?
  1. Define your conference strategy. You need to start by clearly outlining your target audience and who you want to attend your conference. …
  2. Prepare the content. …
  3. Choose your platform. …
  4. Market your conference. …
  5. Enable your attendees to network and interact.


What makes a great virtual conference?

Just like with a traditional conference, the key to having a great virtual conference is hosting it in the right place, and that means choosing the right technology. You’ll want to choose a virtual event platform that can accommodate the type of content you want to provide and the number of participants you’re expecting.

Should you hire virtual conference speakers for your webinar?

Most webinar platforms support videoconferencing, and virtual conference speakers should absolutely make use of that capability. When your audience can see the speaker at a virtual event, it makes for a more engaging, more personalized attendee experience.

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.

Are online virtual events as effective as in-person conferences?

Online virtual events may be foreign to many meeting planners, but – if properly executed – they can be just as successful and engaging as live, in-person conferences. The key (which applies no matter what the conference medium) is to relentlessly focus on the quality of your audience’s experience.


How do you host a successful virtual conference?

10 tips for hosting virtual eventsSet clear goals from the start. … Choose the right platform to host your virtual event. … Choose the right time for your event. … Promote your virtual event. … Develop a clear agenda that includes speakers and timeframes. … Include moderators at your event. … Engage your audience. … Prepare to troubleshoot.More items…

How do you make virtual conferences more engaging?

9 steps to a more engaging online meetingCheck your tech. … Engage your audience before the online meeting begins. … Establish roles. … Plan free-time for interactive dialogue. … Prepare an icebreaker. … Create an interactive presentation. … Use gamification to make virtual meetings fun. … Send a follow-up email.More items…

Are virtual conferences successful?

Many companies successfully pivoted to (and will continue to rely on) virtual events. Ever since the COVID-19 outbreak ground in-person events to a halt, many organizations and businesses have thrived with virtual events.

How do you welcome participants in a virtual meeting?

9 Ways to Welcome Attendees to Your Online EventLay down the welcome mat before the event. … Reach out personally to attendees (especially those you already know) ahead of time. … Pose a question. … Establish safety. … Start with logistics, not purpose. … Share the purpose and intention of the event. … Do a group activity.More items…•

What is the best virtual meeting platform?

The Best Free Video Conferencing PlatformsZoom.Google Hangouts.Dialpad Meetings.TrueConf Online.Skype.FreeConference.Lifesize Go.Slack Video Calls.More items…

What is the best app for virtual meetings?

The Best Video Meeting Apps for TeamsZoom. Zoom is one of the most popular video conferencing solutions for businesses. … Skype for Business. Microsoft’s popular Skype service is augmented as an enterprise-ready video conferencing tool. … Slack. … BigBlueButton. … BlueJeans. … Whereby. … GoToMeeting. … Cisco WebEx.More items…

What are the disadvantages of virtual meetings?

Cons of Virtual Meetings vs Face-to-Face MeetingsInteractions Between Participants Are Difficult. … Visual and Audio Only. … Less Dynamic. … Internet Connections Can Fail. … Team Members May Be in Different Time Zones. … Participants May Not Know Each Other. … Pay for Software.

What are the disadvantages of virtual events?

Cons of Virtual EventsThe “Wow” Factor Can Be Hard to Replicate. … No Face-to-Face Interactions. … No After-Hours Networking Opportunities. … Harder to Hold Attendees’ Attention. … Easy Information Dissemination. … Massive Data-Gathering and Analytics Potential. … No Budget-Busting Show-Running Costs. … Scheduling Issues—Avoided.More items…•

What do you consider is the biggest challenge with virtual conferences?

Most virtual event marketers consider keeping attendees engaged to be the biggest challenge. After all, many of us have racked up far more screen time over the past year than we would like, and fatigue is setting in.

Why should you attend a virtual event?

Online events allow you to attend from anywhere, paving the way for a larger, more diverse audience. Cost Saving – Online events eliminate travel costs, hotel accommodations, food expenses, etc.

Why do people use remote conferences?

Here are a few core reasons a remote conference works so well: 1. You can attract the best speakers. The beauty of a remote conference is that speakers can be in any location. You aren’t asking for a big time or travel commitment, you’re only asking for a couple hours to prep and do the event live.

How many countries attended Distributed 2019?

We had attendees from over 86 countries attend Distributed 2019. This is staggering and exciting. The diversity of the audience was way beyond what you could expect with a live event, plus more representative of what the customer base actually looks like. This is how we touch our global advocates, and bring an international community of users together into one community. As a bonus, a remote-first approach enabled us to attract a much bigger audience, driving brand awareness and new-user growth — 27% of registrants to Distributed 2019 were non-users and net-new leads.

How can I create value for my users?

One common way is through events – like conferences, meetups, or user-groups – where customers, industry leaders, and other experts have the opportunity to exchange knowledge. While in-person events bring enormous value for attendees, they can also be extremely resource-heavy.

Is in person event resource heavy?

While in-person events bring enormous value for attendees, they can also be extremely resource-heavy. They’re also dependent on getting people to a certain location for a set period of time.

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 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.

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.

Why are sponsors important?

Finally, a sponsor’s brand can be valuable in helping to bolster your own brand and the credibility of the event which , again, helps to attract attendees.

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.

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.

How can a virtual conference be interactive?

Even large virtual conferences, however, can be made more interactive simply by using the audience polling features which are available in many online event platforms.

Why are virtual conferences being moved?

While some events have been canceled or postponed, others are being moved to an online, virtual setup in order to safeguard the health of attendees and presenters. Virtual conference events aren’t new (indeed, some very large ones are held each year). However, they are unfamiliar to many meeting planners, and it’s important to understand …

How to hold a virtual audience?

1. Use video if at all possible. Even when delivered by the best speakers, it can be difficult to hold a virtual audience’s attention with a slide-based presentation, alone. Most webinar platforms support videoconferencing, and virtual conference speakers should absolutely make use of that capability. When your audience can see the speaker …

Can speakers do A/V checks?

Most speakers can do A/V checks at live events in their sleep, as it’s an exercise with which they are exceedingly familiar. That’s not the case with virtual events. Even if a speaker has done virtual sessions in the past, there’s no guarantee their next virtual event will use the same technology platform as their last. Great speakers leave nothing to chance when preparing for an event, and that approach is especially important with virtual sessions. Check everything in advance – audio/video quality, screen sharing, host-to-speaker private messaging, audience Q&A – and do it all with the same equipment and internet connection that the speaker will be using on event day.

Can a speech be a virtual event?

A speech that works well in a live venue may not translate perfectly to a virtual one. Speakers may not at first realize it, but gestures and other visual cues that they (sometimes unknowingly) use during a live speech won’t work in the virtual event.

What is virtual conference?

Put simply, a virtual conference is exactly what it says on the tin; a conference held in a virtual space. It allows remote participants to access live, interactive networking opportunities and content through their computers, no matter where they are located. A virtual conference is hosted entirely through the internet.

What are the advantages of virtual conferences?

Fortunately, one of the great advantages to a virtual conference is that networking can often be easier and more scalable than during a physical conference. Some platforms, like Remo, even offer an option to connect directly to an attendee’s LinkedIn page for easier relationship building.

What is the difference between in person and online conferences?

Online conferences and events allow you to skip the extra expenses and only pay your registration fee. Convenient.

Is virtual conferencing good?

Virtual conferencing is great, and it offers a lot of benefits to many people. The ease of scheduling and attending cannot be denied, the impact it has on the expenditure of running such events is significant and the tools for hosting them are developing all the time.

Do you need to travel to a virtual conference?

There is no need for travel, hotels or catering, you simply log on through the virtual conference portal, hit enter and are good to go. This means a virtual conference causes minimum disruption to a working day or week; with no extensive travel time required or overnight stays, attendees need only be away from their work for …

Can you attend a conference online?

With an online conference, you can attend the event from the comfort of your own office, or even from home; anywhere as long as you have a stable internet connection and a working device connected to it. They are always accessible. Often, when you attend a virtual conference, they will be recorded by the host.

Is it convenient to attend a conference?

Convenient. Conferences can be a lot of fun and very useful to attendees, but they are not always convenient. Travelling to face-to-face events by car or plane, missing out on family time and trying to get work done from your hotel room or an internet café can throw you off kilter.

Why do people host virtual conferences?

For one, it can lower the price of admission, enabling smaller businesses with limited budgets to purchase tickets to your conference and offer their own unique insights.

What is online conference?

Additionally, an online conference enables you to create a product — recordings from your conference — that you can continue to share and use as a lead generation tool for months and years after the initial live launch.

When is Hubspot’s virtual partner day?

On April 7-8, 2020, HubSpot launched its own virtual Partner Day. The Partner team used Zoom, a popular video conferencing tool, and sent each presenter a “video kit” with a mic, camera, lighting, and backdrop, so that participants could experience an optimal viewing experience from each of the day’s virtual speakers. Additionally, attendees used Zoom to network with other partners.

What is run the world?

Run The World is accessible to a variety of small and large organizations, including non-profits, startup and enterprise businesses, and individual experts who’d like to host online workshops or bootcamps. Image Source.

Will there be a virtual conference in 2020?

In 2020, there will likely be a rise of virtual conferences. Here, let’s explore the benefits of virtual conferences, take a look at some examples of successful virtual conferences to inspire you, and check out a few tools that can help you plan your own. But first — let’s talk about why virtual conferences can benefit your business in the future.

Can virtual events be lost?

Additionally, Raleigh mentions, “Virtual events can easily lose one of the best benefits of live events: human connection. To mitigate that, keep the event engaging and get the audience involved.”. Now that we’ve explored a few benefits, let’s dive into tools that can help you create your own virtual conference.

How long is Google Cloud Next 2020?

Google Cloud Next 2020, on the other hand, will be hosted one day per week for nine weeks, starting 14 July . As such, it’s clear that virtual events can’t be treated as a like-for-like replacement for in-person conferences.

Is hosting a virtual event easy?

Hosting a successful virtual event won’t be easy for any company to pull off, particularly given the variance in structuring, content styles, and even the technologies powering them. It’s also important to bear in mind that the concept will be new to audiences too, so getting things wrong will be forgivable to an extent.

Why are virtual conferences so popular?

Even before the pandemic, companies and organizations were beginning to realize that online events could be a great way to bring people together.

What is virtual conference?

Virtual conferences take just as much planning and thought as traditional in-person conferences. While getting everyone to the same location is no longer an issue, you still have to develop programming, coordinate schedules, recruit speakers, market the event, reach out to the press, and keep in touch with attendees.

Why are vendors important at conferences?

Vendors have always been a huge part of conferences, and not just for the swag. Vendor presence at conferences benefits everyone: The vendors can make sales. The hosting organization can have some of its costs defrayed. And attendees get access to a range of relevant products and services all in one place.

Why is confirming and reconfirming schedules important?

To make sure everyone is where they are supposed to be when they are supposed to be there, confirming and reconfirming schedules can be even more important for a virtual event than a traditional one. 2. Time zones still matter – make sure participants aren’t shut out by being in the wrong time zone.


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