Virtual Conference Best Practices

Best Practices for Planning Virtual Conferences

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Assign Different Media Requirements for Different Parts of the Conference

For example, in plenary sessions -- where everyone comes together -- there is a clear separation between those on stage (one or just a few people) and those in the audience (possibly a very large group). Those on stage can be connected in a smaller, media-rich shared space that is then livecast to the larger audience -- or even publicly onto the web.

Establish Group-Chat Channels

One of the most effective ways to host very large groups of people in a shared space is using text messaging. There will need to be several group-chat channels, including all simultaneous participants in the conference, session-related channels and smaller, specialized chat channels for smaller groups. This makes all the difference between a person watching a video of a talk by themselves vs. watching a talk together, at the same time, with a group of like-minded people.

It is important that the text chat feeds are monitored by a designated person and that questions fed into the live session are appropriate, and that feedback is given to the speakers during live sessions, as they may not be able to monitor such feeds themselves while giving their talks.

Create an Online Navigation System

The live sessions must be easy to find and get into. The online program needs to have information about when and "where" the sessions will take place, such as Zoom meeting links, webinar links and Slack channels, among others. All of this information should be presented through user interfaces that are easy to understand and with links that "teleport" participants to the "places" they want to go.

Crowd Sourced Virtual Conference Tools

12 Tips for Successful Virtual Conference

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Keep sessions short and build in sufficient breaks

The brain can only absorb what the butt can endure. Shorter is often better for sessions.

Practice, practice, practice

If speakers will be delivering live, do a rehearsal that mimics the live event as much as possible (same computers, same Internet connections, even the same time of day) about a week before the event.

Remind registrants to show up

At least three reminders are usually recommended: one a week before the start of the event, a second the day before, and a third the day of.

Start with a bang

Attendance at a virtual event is usually highest on the first day, so schedule your biggest, most important sessions accordingly.

It’s not over when it’s over

Keep the platform up and open, and keep marketing it. Put recorded videos, other material, discussion form etc here

5 Tips for Conducting a Virtual Meeting

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Virtual meetings be planned out well in advance. "Send the agenda ahead of time, create visuals to reinforce your message and forward them to everyone before the meeting, invite the members of each team who need to be involved,

The 8 Do's of Video Conferencing Etiquette

  • Do be courteous to other participants
  • Do speak clearly
  • Do keep body movements minimal
  • Do move and gesture slowly and naturally
  • Do maintain eye contact by looking into the camera
  • Do dress appropriately
  • Do make the session animated
  • Do be yourself and have fun!

The 7 Don'ts of Video Conferencing Etiquette

  • Don't make distracting sounds
  • Don't shout
  • Don't make distracting movements
  • Don't interrupt other speakers
  • Don't carry on side conversations
  • Don't wear "noisy" jewelry
  • Don't cover the microphone

Virtual Conferences and Events: The 2020 Guide

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Identify Attendee Needs

Start by asking questions like:

  • What are your attendee’s goals?
  • What discussion formats are the most engaging?
  • What is the most valuable content?
  • How will this event make my attendee successful?

KPIs for Measuring Virtual Event Success

To Educate and Delight Customers

Events centered around customer and user engagement will want to look at a variety of metrics centered around product usage, survey results, and retention numbers. Explore different measurements like the number of monthly active users before and after your event, product usage, number of demos given, net promoter scores, post-event survey results, and the number of 1:1 meetings with customers.

To Satisfy Event Attendees

An important area of focus for any event is attendee engagement and satisfaction. When looking to measure event engagement, consider the following measurements: number of session attendees, number of questions in virtual sessions, number of poll responses, number of highly engaged attendees, number of networking community check-ins,

Other References

Things to research more

best practices for speaking virtually (speaking to a camera is much different than speaking on stage)


Few things I thought of...

  • How do we do MCing in a virtual conference
  • Record, put on microsite
  • Pre-recorded video with live comments as the main talk
  • Stream using very good camera - with a specific frame that looks stagish.

Published on: 6th November, 2020