Hosting A Successful Business Event
Traditionally, regular business events followed a standard model that involved room hire, expensive catering and even covering accommodation for several hundred attendees. Webinars and online business talks have changed the way we do business meetings on a large scale. Being a relatively new phenomenon, it can be hard to decide exactly what you need to make an online business talk / presentation a success particularly if your conferencing software has been limited to use during meetings. Here are some pointers to help make your online business talk that much easier.
Even with the fanciest, most advanced conferencing software in the world, it is virtually useless if it isn’t correctly configured or lacks the hardware to back it up. Fortunately, most modern conferencing software is compatible across commonly used hardware and software. High speed, reliable internet is a must as are a good quality camera and microphone. Your viewers are bound to become frustrated if they cannot hear or see you due to an internet connection that is constantly dropping or a poor quality camera and microphone. If it is feasible, a good idea is to have a technician on site especially if you are using specialist hardware. Otherwise, you should be able to solve any IT issues that arise yourself provided you have the right software and hardware for the job.
Rarely do people want to listen to a single person talk for a long time even if what they are saying is compelling or they themselves are fascinating speakers. Supporting live stream videos and supporting visuals will make your broadcast much more interesting, informative, memorable and give it the personality it needs to keep your listeners and viewers engaged.
Tell the world
It sounds obvious, but strong pre-event advertising is crucial to the success of your event. Social media is universally acknowledged as one of the most powerful tools for generating interest in an upcoming event. Email, print media and even the age old art of picking up your phone and inviting someone to your event are also powerful tools to ensure your meeting is well attended.
There will always be a percentage of your invited list that will be unable to attend to your online talk – they could be working, living in a different time zone etc. For these reasons you want to be able to make your event available to view for anyone that would have shown an interest in your talk or needs to see it. With video sharing websites like YouTube and Vimeo, this has become much easier. In fact, the world’s largest companies constantly market through their YouTube accounts.
Have a plan.
It would never cross your mind to attend a critical sales meeting without being well prepared for it. Your online conference / business talk should be no different. You will need to have any invitations for keynote speakers sent well in advance of the event, all your supporting visuals or documentation well prepared as well as a carefully planned itinerary so your guests will know how long the event will run for. An itinerary is particularly important to ensure that neither you or any invited keynote speakers talk for too long.
Aside from the obvious differences, there are some fundamental similarities between online and in person events. And as long as you have planned and marketed effectively and make your presentation engaging and informative, it will be a success.
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