3 Ways to Keep Your Virtual Audience Engaged
Webcasting your event is a great way to connect with attendees that are unable to physically participate due to travel or budget circumstances. Virtual events allow you to connect and deliver your content on a large scale to an unlimited amount of participants.
But as with all events, strategic planning is what differentiates an event- from a successful impactful event. Virtual attendees can become distracted or even interrupted by other activities during your event broadcast. So, how do you keep their attention on your webcast and make them feel like part of the event? Here are three ideas to consider.
1. Send Emails During Sessions
Your virtual participants likely have their email open and running in the background. You can bring the attention back to your webcast and communicate other messaging simply by deploying emails at specific times during the webcast.
To do this successfully you will have to plan tactfully. You don’t want to send an email to someone who signed up but never logged into the broadcast.
Keep it short, around 50 words. You can include a quick link to a deck or discussed information. If the speaker drops a reference to a video, or case study, include the link in the email. Use the email to reiterate power statements, or emphasize takeaways. You can also use email communication to build up to a call to action – that is, what do you want your viewers to do?
Work with your events team, AV Partner and marketing to get creative in segmenting the journey and ramping up your viewer to little by little, lead up to something big!
2. Keep The Presentations Fresh
When you are sitting at a conference you really have nowhere to go until the end of the session, but a remote audience can break attention easily. If you keep presented content short, dynamic and constantly changing both audience groups will stay engaged.
Instead of having a panel discussion, consider short 5-20 minute spotlights on singular topics. When a new speaker takes the stage, the audience attention span resets; the virtual and physical audience is wondering what the new presenter will bring.
3. Encourage Virtual Attendees To Participate On Social Channels And Share Ideas.
Today, most events have their own hashtags where attendees can post pictures, thoughts, quotes, and ideas in one trail. While your virtual audience may not be able to take a photo of the stage they can still contribute and keep the dialogue going. You might even go as far as encouraging your remote attendees to post a picture of their viewing stage – where they are watching the broadcast from. This can provide you with insights; your remote attendees feel involved, and you build an event community on a large scale.
Webcasting your event is a great step in the right direction of expanding the reach for your event, but it is only the first step. The next step is brainstorming ideas on how to maximize the opportunity and value for those remote attendees. When organizing your event, begin by defining what experience you want your virtual attendees to have and what experience you want you’re in person attendees to have. Once you do that you can put together communications and content that holds participant attention and delivers great impacts.
If you are thinking about virtual events, or have one coming up connect with us now to discuss more.