Using event technology to engage virtual attendees
Health concerns and travel restrictions related to Coronavirus Covid19 have many conference organizers scrambling to accommodate those who cannot physically attend but are still keen to participate. So how can you augment your plans to ensure virtual attendees still benefit from everything your conference has to offer? As your remote attendees are not immersed in your event you should look to leverage technology to drive awareness, urgency, and participation.
Here are some best practises for enhancing your digital event experience to support remote attendees:
Tailor your content to virtual attendees
You may already be tailoring content in your event app to different types of attendees, such as executives or staff. You should consider doing the same for remote attendees. Eventbase allows event organizers to offer different event app experiences based on attendee role.
By creating a role for remote attendees, you can deliver a unique attendee experience for those not physically at your event. Sessions can be hidden from the Schedule in your event app if they cannot be experienced remotely. You can also show or hide sections of the app depending on the attendee’s role. For example, you could hide the in-app Game for people who are not attending in person, and provide a distinct set of FAQs for remote attendees.
Offer live streaming
Many conferences already provide video links for their keynotes and other major sessions. Consider streaming more of your sessions to ensure valuable content is available to at-home attendees. It’s also a good idea to make video streams easy to access by directly linking to them from the Schedule in your event app and on your Session Details views too.
Offering video in high definition lets at-home attendees watch it on their big screen TV, and invite their colleagues to watch with them. Remote attendees are more likely to engage with your content at different times as they juggle their home or work responsibilities. Having your event content available both live and on-demand will let a greater number of attendees to participate.
Encourage session interaction
Just because remote attendees are limited to watching from afar, does not mean they cannot participate in sessions. If your sessions include polls or Q&A components, encourage remote attendees to take part as well.
Promote attendee networking
Networking is one of the main reasons people go to conferences, so how can you ensure remote attendees are still able to make connections? The event app can provide a forum for virtual networking, allowing attendees to connect with others — both at the conference or remotely. Intelligent attendee recommendations are especially useful for helping people make valuable connections remotely as they make it easy to see who shares similar interests. It’s also easier than browsing the entire list of attendees.
Connect attendees and exhibitors
Attendees make valuable connections on the trade show floor, and exhibitors rely on the leads they receive at their booth. Featuring a list of exhibitors on your event website or in your event app alongside digital exhibitor content helps remote attendees find potential vendors and partners.
Exhibitor recommendations within your event app further maximize value for remote attendees and exhibitors. You may also want to include an email address in each Exhibitor Profile in your event app, so attendees can request more information. This can also drive leads from physical attendees before and after your event.
Highlight digital sponsor activations
It is impossible to replace the impact of an on-site experience, but your digital activations can still drive attention to sponsors. Ask sponsors to tailor advertisements and invest in digital activations that give all attendees a memorable experience. From interstitial ads to video pre-roll for your streaming content, you can still deliver value to your existing sponsors.
Drive engagement with targeted push notifications
Tailor your push notification messages for remote attendees to keep them engaged and informed of what’s happening at your event. Push messages can be targeted to everyone not in a certain area, allowing you to quickly craft messages that will go to all participants located outside the event locale. You can also exclude remote attendees from push messages that are only relevant to those on-site.
Measure remote experiences with surveys
For in-person and remote attendees alike, you want to hear what they think about your sessions and your event overall. Segment survey results to ensure you understand and learn from the feedback given by remote attendees, especially if this is your first time supporting them.
By taking a proactive approach and leveraging the full capabilities of your event technology, you can create a valuable experience for remote attendees and maximize the value of your event investments.