We’ve been hosting virtual events since 2019, and in the past two years our biggest piece to advice to virtual event hosts is, ‘keep it simple’.
Simple virtual events are successful. They are easier to organise, attend, and navigate. They have ‘experience’ at their heart and are all about ensuring the attendee feels they can participate in a way that feels right for them.
What is ‘simplicity’ in virtual events?
From the registration process to the follow-up everything should feel stress-free and easy to understand.
Make sure your registration process clearly outlines where, when, and how your attendees can take part and what they need in advance to participate (do they need to download anything special or create an account?). Choose a platform that has minimal steps to take part on event day and provides a seamless experience for moving around.
For your programme, remember that your virtual event is not a direct replica of your in-person event. Keep programmes to three or fewer tracks, use breakout rooms wisely and sparingly, and don’t clutter your platform with lots of features.
And keep your page design simple (simple = beautiful). Make sure navigation buttons clearly explain their function and that the layout, colours, and fonts are developed with accessibility in mind.
Remember, a huge percentage of your supporters aren’t confident with tech and the abilities of their attendance will be vastly different from you and your virtual event team.
What are the benefits of keeping virtual events simple?
When we don’t over-complicate our virtual events they are easier to produce and host. They provide a more enjoyable experience for attendees who are able to engage with your content and more likely to follow-up on the event’s CTA.
Your speakers will enjoy being part of the event process and will be more likely to share your event in their networks.
And a simpler format of virtual events improves accessibility for attendees with disabilities.
Oh, and because you’re not hosting this huge, overly complicated, CGI extravaganza you can guarantee your event will be cheaper too. One hour events on Everywhere+ are just €550 and charity virtual event hosts have used this hour to fundraise or steward donors to raise thousands. That’s an ROI you can’t ignore.
How can we keep virtual events simple but improve on last year’s experience?
You can find out some of our tips here. Spoiler: they’re easy and cheap to do.
With the increase in virtual event platforms and the unlimited possibilities of the internet, it can feel overwhelming or high-pressure to create a virtual event that stands out.
But for not-for-profit virtual events our key objective is engagement and connection; and there are lots of ways we can achieve that without breaking the bank (or your attendees’ patience) and still achieve the ‘wow’ factor.
Besides, the only people who want that flashy, complicated experience are the vocal Board member or the over-excited sponsor, right? Don’t let their wants come first over your attendees’ needs.
If you’d like to find out more about hosting successful virtual events in the not-for-profit sector, we’ve hosted hundreds and would be happy to help. Contact us today to find out more.