How to choose the best virtual event platform?

How to choose the best virtual event platform?

 

Hosting virtual events is a significant aspect of a digital revolution.

Although the basics of event management continue to be the same for both setups – physical and virtual, the latter needs some distinct skill-sets. For example, conducting a virtual event is somewhat different due to the inclusion of innovative features and technical advancements.

 

Today, we have an availability of various virtual event platforms, but the question is, how to choose the best one that suits your business needs.

 

To make it simple for you, we have shortlisted some best pointers for you to remember while choosing an ideal virtual event platform.

 




     Define your virtual event platform objectives

 

Every prosperous physical or virtual event is always supported by obvious goals and intentions. These event goals need to resonate with your business aims to promote brand awareness.

Hence, when you decide to host a virtual event, make sure to have specific expectations that you would require from the virtual event platform you choose.

 

To align these objectives, you have to build KPIs for your virtual event and then check if your virtual event platform is able to fulfill these KPIs.

 

Additionally, the latest observations reveal that the motive is to offer an immersive event experience to the attendees. Make sure that the platform has the latest features, innovative functionalities, networking opportunities, etc to make your event a success.

 

     Future-proof your investment

 

Besides checking the particular functionality and features you also need to search for a virtual event platform that will endure the test of time. Hybrid events, for instance, is the destiny of events. Therefore, the virtual event platform must have the ability to facilitate hybrid events as well.

 

It then makes a truer sense to employ an event management solution that not only boosts your virtual events but also supports something that is expected in the future– Virtual, in-person, or hybrid. This will assure your investment can sustain your events now as well as in the future.

 

     End-to-end management

 

Whether you’re conducting short online sessions or virtual conferences of a longer duration, you would always require some of the popular event management tools.

 

You will want a virtual event solution that enables you to handle invitations, enrollments, plans, and payments conveniently. An ideal virtual event platform will let you store all the attendee information in one place. Therefore, it becomes extremely important to invest in an all-in-one virtual event platform.

 

Even if you wish to use two separate systems, it’s important that the virtual platform can efficiently be combined with other tech means you’re using in your virtual events so that the relevant data can readily be transferred from one setup to another.

 

     User-friendly platform

 

Now, let's understand the virtual event platform you've chosen. This is the event platform where your participants, speakers, and sponsors will use to visit the online event. In simple words, it’s similar to a new virtual venue for your event.

 

As a host, you need a system that is convenient to use and easy to set up. Besides this, you need to ensure the virtual platform has a user-friendly interface that is readily accessible by the attendees.

 

Remember that a significant portion of their event experience will be on this virtual platform and you would never want them to drop off or spend time figuring out how the technology works. It’s already a bit challenging to keep the people engaged during an online event as compared to an on-site one. So don’t take a chance.

 

     Ability to customize

 

There are various aspects that you would want in your virtual platform, but the ability to customize is the priority. It will let you integrate your company’s branding and messaging to build a faithful experience for your participants. So consider the customization choices suggested by the platform so that your landing page, enrollment forms, attendee emails, and virtual setting will reflect similar branding guidelines. 

 

 

     Engagement Tools

 

The chances of remote attendees getting bored during virtual events are quite high. We understand that sitting at the same place or staring at the screen for long hours can be tiresome.

 

Therefore, while choosing the appropriate platform for your virtual event, make sure to ask the platform provider about the tools they propose to promote engagement with other online attendees. Features like chat rooms, gamification, virtual breakout sessions, Q&As, live polling, surveys, social sharing, and quizzes, are meant to encourage engagement. Most importantly, include features that you think would create a positive impact on your attendees.

     Support both live & on-demand content delivery

 

The virtual event platform you choose must enable you to conduct both pre-recorded and live content – be it your keynotes, workshops, panel sessions, or discussions. Both live and on-demand content have their set of benefits.

 

For live content, you can keep various speakers and integrate the features like Q&As, live polls, etc to make your virtual event more exciting. The advantage of pre-recorded sessions is that it eliminates the prospect of last-minute blunders.

 

The on-demand content prolongs the course of your content and it can be made available to those who weren't able to take part in the online event.

 

     Significant networking opportunities

 

Networking is considered one of the fundamental motives why people take part in events. The ability to exchange business cards, have 1:1 or group discussions, schedule a meeting are some great ideas to build new connections and get some qualified leads. This will allow the attendees to have a real-life event experience.

 

     Backed by 24/7 tech and customer support

 

The virtual platform that is always backed by 24/7 tech and customer support is a great choice to host your online events. 24*7 Tech support provided by the platform fixes the trivial issues faced by the audience.

 

Also, it makes sure that the platform can troubleshoot any unexpected error to deliver a seamless experience to your attendees.

 

     Meaningful analytics

 

Obtaining relevant data or analytics of your event is a useful tool to understand what went wrong and which part was most liked by the attendees.

 

Without identifying the solutions to these questions, it becomes a little difficult to assess the ROI of your online event and make improvements for your next one. So when you choose a virtual event platform, make sure that your event provider will help you with these insights.

 

Determining the appropriate virtual event platform is not a simple process. The best one can make the true difference to let you host your event in the desired way. After all, you'll be investing an ample amount of money, time, and other resources into an event.

 

We hope that the steps mentioned above will act as a helpful tool when you wish to host a virtual event or choose a virtual venue next time.

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