From big companies like Apple to smaller startups, almost every other company is now opting for virtual events.
These events or conferences are easy to conduct, involve fewer resources, help you save money on logistics, and even reach a larger audience.
To make up for the gap and ensure continued operations, many companies have begun hosting their event through a virtual conference platform and streaming them online.
The pandemic has forced everything and everyone to be confined to their personal spaces because of social distancing. While it is beneficial and necessary, not being able to participate or hold events can negatively impact a business.
While hosting a virtual event can be challenging, choosing the right virtual event platform will make the experience easier for both organizers and attendees. Such platforms can host various events like virtual trade shows, town halls, career fairs, sales events, virtual conferences, and employee engagement meetings.
While choosing a platform, you must keep a close eye on all the available features of the event platform to reap its benefits and make it easier for the attendees to be engaged at the event
If you are wondering how to choose the right virtual conference platform, then paying attention to the following features can make your decision easier.
1. Branding Features
The platform you choose must allow for exceptional branding experiences.
A typical event platform would only let you put up your logo and the brand colors, but you must choose a platform that enables you to take the next step. It must offer various layouts and interactive widgets, which you can customize as per your brand’s design language and ideology.
With the integration of widgets, you can improve the aesthetics, communicate brand values, and plug in content from your website and other sources. Using such widgets, you can make an impressive welcome lobby for the attendees, which will be easy to navigate.
Templates, landing pages, widgets, and stage designs are also important features that you must keep an eye out for. These features of a virtual conference platform will improve your branding.
Networking is the backbone of any business event and is often the main motivator for attendees to show up. The event can be deemed unsuccessful if like-minded individuals do not engage in conversation with each other.
The best platform will have a feature wherein attendees can engage in live one-to-one sessions with other attendees. Some event platforms do this by assigning tier tickets to the attendees, whilst others have an algorithm that acts as a matchmaker and puts attendees with similar interests or goals in a chat room or video conference call.
This type of smart networking enables people to be paired with like-minded professionals increasing the chances of effective networking and socializing.
3. Data and Insights
While networking might be the backbone of an event, data is the backbone of a business. Having relevant data in your hand allows you to assess the efficacy of the event, and optimize the business’s plans as per the data insights.
So, you must choose a platform that gives you an insight into the performance of virtual booths, different virtual event rooms and the engagement rates at sessions too.
You must be able to extract data like how many people attended the event, how long did they stay, the average time spent, the details of the attendees, engagement rates, and other such metrics.
4. Hybrid Event Capability
Many companies are increasingly hosting hybrid events, wherein the organizer would be at an in-person venue with a small number of attendees while other attendees join in virtually through the event platform
However, it is not as simple as streaming the event live on a platform. Instead, it must be more immersive and inclusive of the attendees attending remotely.
The best platform would offer the hybrid model networking and live chat capabilities and a seamless streaming experience.
Your company must be using many different software and tools for everyday activities and marketing purposes on a daily basis. So, you must have the ability to integrate any SaaS solutions that you use with the event to make everything as streamlined as possible.
For instance, you must be using mailChimp for email management, Stripe for payments, HubSpot as your CRM, Salesforce, and other such business solutions. Some event platforms would not offer integration with a lot of software; on the other hand, the ideal platform will allow integration.
So, you must choose a platform that offers all these features to make your event seamless and fun for the attendees.