What is the hardest part in organizing a virtual event?

A number of answers might be flashing though your mind — keep the session streaming smooth, make sure the sponsors are happy — but these aren’t what organizers who have already pulled off their event actually struggled with.

And yet you may have many other questions about organizing virtual events. That’s why Whova reached out to members of our Event Organizer Community, a network of thousands of organizers, to ask questions and learn more about the virtual event organize experience. We found that many questions and assumptions from new event organizers actually have surprising answers! We’ve compiled even more data on what exactly organizer experiences planning a first virtual event have been like — from the good, to the bad, to the technical.

How many staff members do you have for each session of your virtual event?

You don’t want to be overstaffed — but you also don’t want to leave sessions unsupervised. 67% of organizers said that they had 1-2 staff members working per session. While for a larger session, or one with more technical aspects, you might want to add another staff member or two, generally this is just enough to handle a session’s needs, such as muting and unmuting participants, managing things from the technical end, and taking over in case something goes wrong.

 

What is the hardest part about running a virtual event vs. a face to face event?

No, the number 1 hardest thing is not making the streaming smooth. It is how to make it interactive and engaging! This can present a real struggle with a virtual event without the proper planning and informed strategies, it can be easy for attendees to feel disconnected from the other side of the screen. 

To make this process easier, try taking advantage of some of the engagement tools Whova offers! Encourage attendees to interact through forums like the Community Board, run interactive polls during sessions, and even schedule virtual networking sessions through video calls! 

Others listed different problems, like managing attendees in multiple time zones and keeping live sessions running smoothly. Both of these can be addressed with a similar solution: keeping key portions of sessions pre-recorded. While having more interactive portions held through livestream is a good idea, recording and later posting sessions allows attendees to access sessions at times that work for them, and eliminates any streaming concerns from your end.

 

When do you think we can organize face-to-face or hybrid events?

Despite these new challenges, it seems like most organizers believe that virtual events are here to stay. Most predict that March 2021 will be the absolute earliest we might expect to have in-person events again, with many predicting it won’t be until as far back as August 2021. Fortunately, as time passes more and more creative solutions are found for managing some of the stress of virtual events. It’s already easier to pull off a successful event online than it’s ever been!

 

How stressful is it organizing a virtual event? 

If you’ve already started working on your virtual event, you’re probably well aware that taking on this new venture can be very challenging; on average, organizers rated their stress as an 8 out of 10. So what can you do to avoid this kind of stress? 

Of course, planning a new type of event is always going to be the most difficult the first time, but even as you start out, consider ways you can delegate or minimize the stress of your workload. Utilizing an event platform like Whova can be an extremely valuable tool when it comes to taking some of the most tedious parts off of your workload, and keeping all your work in one intuitive, easy to access location.

You may also feel less stressed by learning more about how to organize virtual events. Whova has been holding a virtual event webinar series. Join the webinar and see how you can make your virtual event successful!

 

As an organizer, what do you like about running a virtual event vs. a face to face event?

Luckily, there are many benefits to hosting virtual events too! Many organizers appreciated that the virtual format allowed them to attract more registrants. After all, registrants no longer have to worry about travel and the pricing is often more affordable, enabling attendees who otherwise wouldn’t have been able to make it to attend your event. 

Likewise, with problems like room size out of the way, you can cap the amount of attendees at a much higher number. Increasing attendee size can also be a great way to improve revenue for your event and provide more opportunities to get good ROI for any exhibitors or sponsors! 

Organizers were also relieved to not have to deal with venues, food, hotels, and transportation. An in-person event can have so many issues to juggle dealing with travel alone, and with an event organizer’s busy schedule, it’s always a relief to save time and money on one less issue.

 

Get even more support by joining the Whova community

Looking to connect with other event organizers? Want a platform that will provide you with help for your virtual event every step of the way? Whova is one of the premiere event platforms in an increasingly digital world, and it also gives you access to the Event Organizer Community, a network of fellow organizers exclusive to Whova customers that can help support you throughout the course of your event! Check details about the organizer community and the recent new Fireside Chat series.

If you’re interested in seeing how Whova might work for your event, just reach out to a sales representative to receive a live demo.

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