Can virtual events generate the same engagement as a live event?

The Virtual Event Tricks You Need to know 

In the past few months, all our lives have been hugely altered by an event that previously we could never have anticipated… Love Island 2020 was cancelled.

Also, a global pandemic is happening, and this can be extremely troublesome if you were considering a live conference or event.

Live events are organised so that companies can better engage and align a wider audience – they are interactive, they are personal, and they are an experience.

It would be impossible for a virtual event to have the same level of engagement, right? Well, if you are currently imagining a team zoom call of 20 colleagues in their back bedrooms then yes, you would be totally correct.

But actually, there are ways to ensure that the objectives of a typical physical event are still met when converting to a virtual event. You just have to adapt your approach!

Let’s consider our real-life example…

UD Trucks Leadership Summit 2020

What is usually a large-scale annual event in Tokyo for 250 of UD Trucks global leadership team, this year turned into a fully virtual conference.

The plan remained to align all delegates on the performance, the strategy, and the vision; and it was down to the CWA team to answer the questions of HOW!

How did we present to the 250 delegates that were supposed to travel to Tokyo?

Virtual events give you greater scope to reach more people at a time which suits them
Behind the scenes at a virtual event

We set up a chat show style studio at head office and recorded all the presenters as they delivered their message. Each section was uploaded to a bespoke secure webpage, and we sent event invites to all delegates at a specific time and date.

And what’s better, with virtual events, we don’t have to worry about audience capacity within an auditorium, we can invite everyone within the company to watch the content and get involved!

How did we keep people engaged virtually, especially given that a standard event would last a couple of days?

A creative backdrop will help to bring your virtual conference to life
A successful virtual event needs engaging visuals

We created a “UD World” key visual that served as a company map, allowing the Executive Leadership Team to guide the virtual attendees through the status and vision of their particular competency areas.

All content was made on demand, so attendees can work their way through the event at a time that’s convenient for them.

How do we still ensure that attendees can contribute I hear you ask?

We uploaded section feedback hyperlinks that enabled all attendees to leave their thoughts. What’s more, we welcomed everyone to suggest how we might improve the UD World visual concept leading on to next year’s forum!

And as If it were a live broadcast, we then were able to add in some live Q&A and polling features which gives the added bonus of real time results.

So, in answer to the question of “How do I convert my event to a virtual platform?” it’s pretty simple. Plan. Adapt. Deliver.

Much like how I have adapted to achieve my own personal objective of writing this blog without ever mentioning the C-word!

(I do mean the pandemic based C-word for those who were wondering)

Have you had to rethink your corporate events calendar? Talk to us today to discuss your future event objectives.

cwa meet the team about us myles
Written by
Myles Griffin
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