Marketers are trying to cross the online and physical realms to optimise interaction and create memorable moments while customers and attendees increasingly focus on smartphones and digital resources. Online and virtual events are offering the perfect solution by bringing together digital engagement and brand experience. According to Market Research Media, virtual events will grow from $14 billion in 2018 to $18 billion in 2023, with a steady increase of five percent annually. Hosting an online event is an ideal way to better monetize an experience and effectively reach a worldwide audience.

Now is the time to embrace online events, as they will stay top of funnel for most marketers during 2021. However, executing a successful virtual or hybrid event is much more than turning on a camera or downloading a live streaming mobile app. By reading this article, you’ll be on your way to providing your audience with an unforgettable online experience.

When looking for alternate options, virtual events are a fast and efficient choice.

Virtual events range from completely online experiences, such as a live-streamed presenter, to more interactive events that combine the energy of an onsite audience with the participation of remote participants. Not all providers of virtual events are built the same and often have lots of pros and cons dependent on your goals for the event. You should be thinking about if it would be beneficial to have an e-commerce space for your content? Do you need video conferencing functionality or does your content need to integrate with social media? As with any cutting-edge solution, the more questions you ask the clearer your production-vision will become.

Attendees are far more engaged when there is a storyline.

Storytelling can be a difficult process when you are trying to put together engaging content on a technology heavy subject.  When you’re streaming a single event or producing an expo series, there should be a beginning, middle, and end to which will resonate to all audience participants. With our online events we like to start off with the presenter giving insights the audience can gain from listening into the session, this keeps the audience engaged. Also look to bring in companies which you can share a use case with. Talk openly about the problems you see in the market and what you’re firm is doing to solve these market issues. 

Audience Participation is key when it comes to online events. 

Audiences like to have their voices heard, they are likely to want to engage with firms especially when it’s a two way conversation.  It is pivotal to allow for audience involvement in the online event, you can set up LIVE Q&A, polls, or even quizzes. Additionally you can interview an attendee and let them add value during a streamed session, or have a panel discussion with a select attendees. What matters is letting presenters and audiences have the most intimate relationship possible. On ditto’s Campfire we allow for our audience to be able to type into the group chat whilst a session is on going this way they can also network with other attendees within the show. 

What Platform is right for your audience?

Deciding on the correct technology platforms to stream on is highly important especially when you want to make your content easily accessible. It is important that you know your audience and the platforms that will be best suited for them.  In the B2B space we have found a virtual event optimized for mobile devices, requiring minimal login processes works best. We have found huge success this year with platforms such as Zoom, LinkedIn Live and using live streaming to customers websites.

Repurposing content extends your virtual event investment

This should not be a one time event. With online events you are putting a lot of effort into creating audience engagement, smart content and time building promotion and branding around the event itself. It is important that you keep up momentum. Finding ways in which your content can be repurposed is  a crucial way to keep an event going long after it’s over, whether that’s in person or online. Stay relevant by cutting your content into bite size pieces of demos, videos and animations and use these on your social media channels. Moreover you can use blog posts and share slides, create a podcast of your findings from the event as a recap for your audience.

Focus on the right metrics for success 

When it comes to collecting precise lead information and viewer data, modern technology is seriously underrated. Moreover it will help your brand’s ROI and optimize KPIs. Software packages and providers offer built-in dashboards or support that can break down your audience and event performance, and make the data easier to report.  

Remember to keep in mind that  just like with a virtual event strategy, the measurements of success for a virtual event are not the same as those of an in-person event, so the results might look different than you’re used to. On average only 10% of registrants to your event actually attend on the day, which is another reason why it is hugely important to allow your event to be accessible after the event has been broadcasted. 

If you have any questions about hosting an online event, contact Hayley McCarthy, Account Campaign Manager –