Your checklist to organising virtual events

So, you’ve made the decision to host a virtual event. You are entering a new realm, and your previous event management experience, while still useful, is lost in the void of this new online world.

February 16, 2021

- 3 min read

So, you’ve made the decision to host a virtual event. You are entering a new realm, and your previous event management experience, while still useful, is lost in the void of this new online world. Where do you start? How do you begin the planning process for a virtual event?

This checklist highlights the key important points that all event planners should consider in their virtual events.

virtual event,virtual events

Pre-event

Details of event

Setting goals will make it easier to measure the success of your event at the end.

  • What is the aim of your event and what will attendees gain from it?
  • When will the event take place? Dates and particularly time zones are very important for virtual events

Branding and theming

There may be no on-site branding or signage but the theming and branding for online is just as important.

  • Think about your logo and color scheme for a virtual event platform. Create a brand that can be weaved into your marketing (email comms, social media) and the platform. Continuity is key!
  • Our event management software is a highly customizable platform, so any branding requirements and corporate guidelines can be included.

Target audience

You need people to bring the platform to life so think carefully about who should attend and their attendee journey.

  • You need to outline who the attendees will be. In this new format can you widen your target audience? Does this create exciting opportunities for attendees?
  • Target sponsors and speakers who are appealing and who your audience will want to hear from. Engaging content will be a big draw for registrations.

Agenda

Content is crucial for virtual events; attendees will not turn up if they don’t know what to expect.

  • Think carefully about audience engagement. Will they need key live moments to ensure they partake in the event? Do they need a flexible agenda, with on-demand content to fit into their daily lives? Do they need interaction and communication through breakouts?
  • Make sure your agenda is easy to follow, allow attendees to curate personal agendas, and download calendar files to remind them of key moments during the event.

Registration

This should be seamless; it will set the precedent for your virtual event.

  • Setting up your registration and ticketing is a huge part of any event. You can set up one or multiple tickets, specify attendee types, set paid or free tickets, all within a matter of minutes.  
  • Confirmation emails with calendar files are important, if you get your event in calendars early, you are more likely to have attendees show up on the day!

Marketing

Digital marketing has never been more important.

  • Design a marketing calendar to keep organized and pursue a dialogue with your attendees.
  • Signpost key sessions, adding calendar invites to emails or directing them to the platform to curate their agenda and download calendar invites directly
  • Use targeted posts on social media to increase registrations. With virtual events, you have an opportunity to tap into a much bigger audience.

Tech Checks

This is a make or break for a virtual event.

  • You MUST have rehearsals to guarantee your speakers are comfortable, set-ups look good (we would not want to recreate some of the filter faux pas we have seen recently!) and the session runs smoothly.
  • If you are live streaming a run-through with the production agency to ensure feeds work with no interruption is super important.
  • Make sure you find an event tech provider that has professional services that schedule tech checks and run-throughs with your event organizers and agencies for a seamless event.

During event

Manpower and support

We may not be physically running from session to session, but if Canapii recommends one thing it’s to ensure you have enough manpower on event days to help things run smoothly.

  • We suggest dedicated help admins, who can answer questions on the event management platform and through your help inbox/FAQs.
  • Tech support dedicated to ensuring the sessions are running smoothly and assist with any troubleshooting.
  • Colleagues on the platform making it feel alive, posting and replying to comments, joining breakout sessions, and getting involved in the conversations.

You can get a dedicated account manager, an events specialist with direct experience in running technology events, tech rehearsals with the technical team, and 24/7 access to our help and support.

Social media and Email marketing

Plan ahead with your event day marketing, this will be key to ensuring audience engagement and attendance.

  • Schedule posts with highlights of sessions and have post reminders when sessions are about to begin.
  • Have a dedicated team member posting live updates and engaging with any posts from speakers or attendees. 

Post-event

More marketing

Sustaining the event conversation is recommended post-event, this is when you’ll get key feedback and ratings from attendees.

  • Send post-event surveys or polls.
  • Send a press release with highlights and takeaways of the event.  

ROI

Debrief with your sponsors and any important attendees to hear their feedback for improvements for your next even

  • Share a debrief report with your sponsors, with key numbers on sessions, attendees, meetings etc. Canapii can provide a wide range of analytics to produce a full debrief report, all you need to do is export the analytics and put it into your ROI template!
  • Get feedback from speakers on their experience. Do they have suggestions for improvements? What went well?
  • Have a wider internal team feedback session. Where were the pain points? How would you organize yourselves better next time around? What went particularly well that you’ll take into other events?

If you take away one thing from this blog it’s that you should plan well ahead of time for your event, create a to-do list and have a team behind you who can support you through all these stages. With Canapii, we become part of your extended team, available 24/7 with event experience and incredible knowledge of the platform and creative event capabilities! If you are interested reach out to us now to speak to a member of the team! 

Danna

Danna Velilla

Marketing & Events Executive

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