Virtual Event Platform – One Solution for your Online Events
Businesses of all sizes have developed a breed of events that have taken the meetings and events industry by storm. Virtual events, which had a futuristic overtone until today, have redefined in-person interaction. We have all attended it in some form, whether it is a simple webinar or a full-fledged online tradeshow. As virtual events have evolved into a business necessity, several sophisticated virtual event platforms have emerged to replicate a personalized attendee experience similar to face-to-face events. Therefore, choosing the best online platform is critical to creating impactful experiences even beyond the event.
Before we dive deeper into the virtual event platform, let’s look at some common concepts surrounding virtual events.
Types of Virtual Events
Marketers host events to:
- Create/generate leads and drive sales pipeline
- Increase brand awareness
- Build a community of followers
- Exchange knowledge and expertise
Virtual events have the same benefits, if not more. Below are the three major types of virtual events:
We’ve all been a part of webinars, which can be defined as virtual seminars. Webinars usually have one or two speakers who steer the conversation on a topic with a 30–35-minute presentation. For attendee engagement, there are several features such as live Q&A, audience polls, and session chat.
Virtual conferences are multi-day events that include multiple sessions and speakers. For enhanced flexibility, virtual conferences have different types of video streaming options. They are usually hosted with the help of virtual event management software, which includes multiple networking features such as business matchmaking, clubhouse-style meeting rooms, poster walks, etc.
Online tradeshows and exhibitions provide in-person experiences with virtual exhibitor booths and breakout areas. It allows attendees to filter booths based on interest and download contact information, brochures, reading material, and other branded collaterals. These events are created with a comprehensive event management platform to plan, promote, and analyze events.
Benefits of Virtual Events
There are multiple benefits of hosting a virtual event. Whether it is reaching a larger audience or eliminating logistical costs, here are the top 10 benefits of virtual event:
- Cut logistics cost of booking venues, travel, and accommodation
- Reach a larger audience
- Eliminate printing cost
- Speakers/Exhibitors participation from around the world
- Better data collection, literally at every digital touchpoint
- Highly scalable, with flexible agendas
- New revenue channels and better sponsorship opportunities
- Generate more accurate leads with features like business matchmaking
- Promote new-age networking with features like clubhouse-style meeting rooms
- Build a year-long community of participants and registrants
What is a Virtual Event platform?
A virtual event platform is a unique software that creates a virtual space for online events. It is a one-stop virtual solution for managing the entire event lifecycle, from start to finish. It allows event organizers to create registrations, websites, emails, ticketing, and the virtual event itself. Advanced event management platforms such as Eventdex also provide other features and apps such as virtual business matchmaking, event gamification, poster-walk sessions, and social walls to create year-long engagement.
Virtual event platforms provide a unified event experience and analytics. With customizable dashboards and reports, organizers can see what is working for them and what isn’t to plan their events better in the future. Other capabilities of virtual event software include the ability to moderate content as well as integrate with numerous CRM and marketing automation solutions. It ensures your data is stored in one place and complies with regulations such as GDPR. Here is a list of what a virtual event platform includes:
- Event website
- Event registration
- Email marketing
- Event apps such as business matchmaking
- Question and answer
- Video conferencing with interactive features
- On-demand sessions
- Live Polls
- Live presentation content
- Feedback surveys
- Virtual booths
- Online networking
- Analytics and dashboard
Key features of a virtual event platform
A virtual event platform is a distinct solution tailored to host online events. Therefore, they must accommodate an event’s multifaceted nature. Some defining capabilities of such a solution are:
Multiple virtual spaces
The most important feature of any virtual event platform is multiple rooms and event spaces. These differentiated spaces such as stage, exhibition booths, roundtables, clubhouse-style meeting rooms, breakout areas allow you to present various types of content with different audiences. In other words, multiple meeting rooms let you replicate the experience of live sessions at an event.
Networking is one of the main reasons why people attend events, live or virtual. In addition to hosting a live stream, a virtual event platform has multiple options to engage attendees and encourages them to share their feedback, ideas and make connections. Beyond simple Q&A and polling, the event management platform offers other features such as video networking, direct messaging, speed networking, surveys as well as group and private chats. A virtual event management software is unique in the way it unlocks two-way conversations between participants.
Online event management software allows branding customization, unlike simple webinar hosting platforms. It lets you brand your virtual venue by using your logo, images, colors, fonts, etc., to ensure your online event is unique to your business and provides a branded experience. It is this that sets apart an event platform from other online collaboration and video conferencing tools.
Key Things to Consider Before Choosing the Right platform
With so many online event management solutions available in the market, choosing the right software is easier said than done. However, with the right questions in mind, you can determine the perfect solution for your event. Here are a few questions to ask about the event tech:
Understand if the platform has all the basic features such as registration, branding, and live streaming. Is the platform easy to use? How customizable is the registration form? Can you send branded emails to promote your event? How comprehensive is the reporting feature?
It is critical for the virtual event management platform you choose to integrate with other software used in your company. Whether it is your CRM or marketing automation solutions, popular event management software solutions provide thorough integrations with leading solutions.
Understand the type of events you can organize from the virtual event software. Does it allow you to host different types of events such as conferences and exhibitions? The solution you choose should be able to power hybrid, live or virtual events with ease.
To ensure the success of your next virtual event, it behooves you to identify the platform that goes beyond live polling, surveys, and Q&A. Comprehensive virtual event management platform like Eventdex provides different apps that amps up the networking in both live and virtual events.
Little imagination is needed to understand your budget and look for a cost-effective solution. It will perhaps be one of the deciding factors in choosing the right virtual event management platform.
Over to you now!