避免這 5 個錯誤，透過線上活動拓展你的數位社交圈
User Experience Does Matter When Expanding Your Digital Presence
Have you attended any virtual events lately? Did you have a good experience throughout the whole process?
This year I attended quite some virtual events due to social-distancing at COVID-era. Whether it’s a webinar, online concerts, virtual networking, or even an accelerator demo; I find 3 common mistakes which I believe all organizing personnel should watch out for.
Let me explain in chronological order:
Here “Communication” refers to the interaction with attendees before the virtual event, which may include:
Working with an experienced virtual event agent is recommended, especially if your organization is small and wants more exposure. In case you want to have a landing page of your own, make sure the registration process involves simple messages, minimum steps, and a clear call to action.
I understand many companies want to collect as many leads as possible from their event. Keep in mind that the more information you request, the viewers are more likely to drop out. So get the priority straight, think about your main goal for this event. Are you trying to get more exposure by having more people registered? Or do you want to go deeper and generate more conversion from a product?
Also, don’t forget to make your registration mobile and device-friendly. I once attended a video conference via Cisco’s MeetMe. Spoiler alert, it’s not working on either Macbook or iPhone!
Consider all the UI/UX elements when you do the design. A good way to check if it’s a user-friendly design is to do a usability test. See if prospects can finish the registration on their phone when waiting at red lights.
Adequate event reminders
Every capable event planner now knows the trick to embed an event calendar in the confirmation email. You can add a link to your event, alert time, and any important notes. Be careful not to set only one calendar if you’re running a series of events. Your attendees will find days of their time blocked and they can’t tell on which day a particular event will take place.
It’s a great gesture to send out reminders when it’s closing to your event day. But don’t overdo it! Often the case is that your customers register on the event platform and simultaneously agree to receive notification from your organization. Later they might find themselves receiving the same reminder from the platform, your mailbox, and even your social media account.
I also encountered a situation when a group sent me 6 reminder emails on the same day. That is definitely too much. If your event is more than 1 month away, my advice is to send no more than 2 reminders beforehand. And only send a reminder if you have something new to share.
Remember, sometimes less is more.
This usually happens one day before your event. Use it to communicate the key information, which can be the platform you’re using (remind attendees to download the app), the event flow, or some materials you want attendees to take a look at beforehand. It would also be nice to include a dress code. And in the case of a virtual event, it’s always preferable to know whether attendees can opt out of showing their faces.
Needless to say, logistics is essential for a successful event. What does that entitle for a virtual event?
You need to have technical personnel ready. Test all system functionality, check the bandwidth and keep a stable internet connection.
I couldn’t picture it more clearly. How do you reckon attendees may think if you’re running a virtual event focusing on your firm’s digital capability, then attendees find themselves staring at a black screen for 15 mins due to a technical error?
Many of you will agree that hosting a virtual event is a good way to engage with your customers. How do you do that? You might want to include a Q&A session during or after the keynote speech. However, you’d better find someone other than the speaker to manage the Q&A chat board.
I recently attended one very insightful sharing event, where the host managed to answer 100 questions in a 45-minutes Q&A! From my observation, the reason he could pull this off is that he had support personnel to monitor the questions on Zoom and replied to some basic ones if possible. More detail of Zoom can be found here. Slido is also a good tool, but the chat board will open in a separate window, which may distract your audience.
Always keep a clear communication channel open. That is particularly important when you’re hosting a day-long virtual event. As your audience can log in anytime during the session, including an event flow for everyone is advisable. Use the chat board, or the site’s notification feature if available. In addition, you can leave a message during breakout sessions for any late joiners.
There can be all kinds of surprises during an event. If some technical issue does happen, make sure you notify attendees timely, either via email or your social media. Assign a dedicated person for that task. It doesn’t look good when attendees post 20+ messages on your Facebook page, asking why the event hasn’t started.
Eye on the ball and follow up! As mentioned in the “Communication” section, you have to set a clear goal of what you want to accomplish from the virtual event.
If your goal is to promote a new company, invite attendees to fill out a survey to understand what they need and why do they care. If your company needs more leads for sales to contact, offer attendees a small gift and encourage them to leave contact information. In the case when it's about enhancing client relationships, send a post-event letter to let attendees know what is the latest with your company, and invite them to the following session if available.
Speaking from someone who attended more than 30 virtual events in the first half of 2021, and someone who has much experience organizing and managing events in the professional field, I’m glad to see the rapid development these 2 years when everyone can enhance their digital presence with a simple tool.
A successful virtual event can make people feel more connected, more cared for, and more passionate about you or your organization. Use it wisely, strengthen your personal branding, and make your business shine at this challenging time.
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