The ever increasing use of technology means that day to day there is no time anymore; being constantly online and never switching off, always available to the rest of the world.  Making it harder to find space in the diary to attend various meetings and events, has increased the popularity of online virtual events, taking away the need to travel to a particular destination blocking out the whole day.

For event attendees, that’s great – this allows attendance to the relevant parts only, meaning you can switch on your concentration for what really matters and can continue with other parts of your lives for the rest.

For event planners, there is no longer as much of a worry about the physical elements of the meeting, but instead IT becomes crucial to the event success.  

Events have been running online for a while now and to keep up to date with the latest event management trends, most agencies have had no choice but to follow suit and create online event success.  But the key question is; how do you take that to the next level?

You may have planned lots of different virtual events and each one may be running fairly successfully, but there are always ways to get better.

Follow up with the Attendees

Getting contact information from attendees is invaluable, but only if used correctly! How often do you as an event planner gather all these details only for the data to sit on a spreadsheet unused?  Follow up with the attendees, ask them how the event went, offer help based on what was discussed.  Often people feel that when using online tools, this can take away that personal touch – bring that back to attendees in some way and this will heighten their experience, increasing the likelihood of them coming back to you.

Make things Interactive

During an online event, it’s too easy for attendees to get distracted – there are so many things going on around them in their own space.  So make things interactive!  Encouraging audience participation will increase their interest in your event which, more importantly, will please your client.  To do this the online event platform needs to be easy to use and designed in a way that makes it simple for the audience to comment or ask questions.  The emphasis here is also on the presenter to make the attendees feel at ease and create the discussion aspect.

Stay Online After the Event

Some people won’t share their questions whilst the event is happening, so let them know that you’re around afterwards to help.  The more available you are to answer questions, the more likely it is that your targets for that event will be reached, as well as for the next event too.  People like to feel like they are not being generalised; by focusing specifically on them after the event, the event experience will be more rewarding and they are likely to attend the next one and recommend you to a friend or colleague.

Have a Solid Online Presence

If it is online events you are specialising in, increase your credibility by having a solid online presence.  People like to categorise… if your website, social media accounts and blog are looking slick and up to date, the assumption will be that your online event management is also smooth running.  Tagging, commenting, posting regularly will not only keep potential attendees informed, but it will also keep them checking your accounts for future news.  For an event planner, this doesn’t have to take long, it just requires good timing.

Be innovative!

Do not be scared to try something new.  Technology is adapting every day – do not assume that because you haven’t seen it before, that it won’t work.  New and original ideas are the ones that get remembered and talked about and there is so much scope for fresh ideas online.

Most importantly, do not get complacent.  You may be in line with other event management agencies, or even ahead, but online event trends are constantly changing, developing, improving so stay in front of your competitors to take your event success to the next level.  Good luck!

About the Author

Sarah Hill is an avid blogger and creative content writer at Group7events, a leading event management agency and professional event planner in London, delivering global free venue finding service. She is a writer by day and a reader by night. While not writing, she loves to share her time with family and friends.

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