As the popularity of virtual events continues to rise, so too have the number of virtual event platforms vying for attention.
However, not all virtual event platforms are created equal. They vary greatly in quality and features offered, which can make finding the best platform for the job completely overwhelming.
We understand how difficult sorting through platform features can be, so we’ve put together the top 10 features to look for in a virtual event platform so that your next event is set for success.
While this isn’t strictly a feature of your virtual event platform, any business that’s serious about creating a sleek and professional virtual event should look for a managed virtual event service.
A managed virtual event service simply means you have a team of professionals guiding you through the end-to-end process of hosting an online event.
As well as providing you with a cutting-edge virtual event platform and technology, they take care of all the hard work behind the scenes, such as guest registration, running engagement sessions, monitoring technology and security, and everything else that goes into producing a successful virtual event. This gives you more time to focus on what’s important—putting together a fantastic content program that will attract and engage your target audience.
Don’t assume that your virtual audience has the time and means to sit down at a desktop when it comes time to join your event. Make sure that your virtual event platform is optimised for both mobile and desktop.
As well as being able to join the event, the platform should allow mobile users to engage and enjoy the same HD audio-visual quality and features—such as live polling and live chat— as those who are using a desktop.
Your virtual event platform should make presenting as seamless and easy as possible. This means having a screen-sharing feature that allows your speakers to present great visual content that amplifies their message. Content such as slideshows, media clips, and interactive graphs are key to creating audience engagement, so encourage your speakers to make use of the screen-share feature to supercharge their presentation.
Many self-serve virtual event platforms don’t have the option to custom brand your event. This is a feature that helps your audience easily recognise your brand before, during, and after your event by branding your digital assets and overlapping your logo and colours on-screen throughout the broadcast.
Research tells us that when an audience is repeatedly exposed to a brand logo and colour, it builds familiarity that can lead to a recall of your brand whenever they think of your industry.
Too many organisations overlook the importance of having an optimised and secure electronic registration system. A poorly managed registration system can greatly affect the quality of attendees you attract to your event.
However, managing guest registration is also highly time-consuming, so look for a virtual event platform that offers secure electronic registration that is managed by the platform provider. They’ll ensure that your event registration is streamlined for optimal conversions.
For many attendees, one of the big drawcards of a virtual event is the possibility of getting up close and personal with industry experts. This is why it’s important to look for a platform that facilitates managed Q&A sessions.
This amazing feature allows you to allocate times during or at the end of your webinar for attendees to ask questions. These sessions are run by a professional moderator who can vet questions for clarity and ensure the smooth running of the session.
Just as moderated Q&A sessions are essential for driving engagement, you should also look for a platform that offers live polling and live chat features. Live chat allows your virtual attendees to discuss topics as they’re being presented by your speakers. This helps build a community around your brand, gauge audience sentiment, and find areas of interest that you can address in later sessions.
Live polling allows your audience to vote on topics on the go and is run by your managed virtual event provider. Live polling can give you invaluable audience insights that can go on to benefit nearly every area of your business.
The benefits of your virtual event don’t stop just because your broadcast has finished.
One of the benefits of using a managed virtual event service is that they can record and even transcribe the event for you. This footage can be used for future marketing campaigns, but more importantly, you can offer it as an on-demand service for attendees who couldn’t attend your event live.
Don’t make the costly mistake of thinking that the value of a virtual event can’t be directly measured. This isn’t the case. There are lots of thoughtful metrics that can be tracked and reported on. As well as measuring whether or not you’ve reached your event goals, post-event reporting can provide you with invaluable audience insights that can positively impact every area of your business.
Self-serve virtual event platforms don’t tend to offer in-depth post-event reports, so it’s best to look for a managed virtual event service that will.
If your organisation has enjoyed success with in-person events in the past, there’s no need to give them up! You can enjoy the best of both worlds by combining your in-person event with a virtual one, taking your physical events online in what’s known as a hybrid event.
A hybrid event allows you to run your physical event almost the same as you normally would, but with modifications that allow you to also broadcast to a virtual audience who can join in almost as if they were there in the audience.
Not all virtual event platforms are capable of hosting a hybrid event. So look for a provider with proven experience in producing great hybrid events as they require specific skill sets, platform features, and technology to pull it off professionally.
As virtual events grow in popularity, so too are the number of providers who are offering their services.
The good news is that if you look for a platform with the above features, you’re giving your event the best chance for success. At the end of the day, the purpose of your virtual event platform isn’t to broadcast in a one-way flow of communication. It’s about creating rich conversations that give you a deeper understanding of your target audience—and grow your business.
At Express Virtual Meetings, our managed virtual event service is trusted by some of Australia’s most recognised brands. Packed with all the engagement features you need to captivate an audience, we guarantee to deliver you a seamless hybrid or virtual event, for 10,000+ participants.
Get in touch with our team to book an obligation-free demonstration of our leading virtual event platform. Or simply give us a call on 1300 849 300 between 6 am and 9 pm Monday to Friday (excluding Australian national public holidays).
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