Online events are rather like e-commerce in 1996 - sometimes they can be a little raw. No matter how professional the events management is behind it, the end experience can be less than slick.
During the pandemic, virtual & hybrid event tech has been widely adopted within the conference events sector. Whilst this has been a salve to events organisers and brands alike, the technology is still a limiting factor.
The main reason for this is no-one is completely sure what they should be building. Before going to an event production company, the first question brands need to ask themselves is “how can we emulate a real life event experience though event technology?”
What Virtual Events are doing wrong
For conferences, it's imperative that large groups of attendees are able to interact verbally. In our research, it turned out that this is not a standard option that organisers can offer their clients. Market-leading event technology players such as ON24, Hopin or Glisser, offer fully branded and customisable platforms, but still only provide live text Q&A. When prioritising live audio & video Q&A options, event management companies are still sent into the realms of Webex and Zoom Professional. This harms the verbal interaction that's essential for successful events and conferences.
What Virtual Events are doing right
The main benefit of these platforms is that they come with white-labelled, fun-free user interfaces and generic dashboards. But this is not what you want if you’re an international brand hosting several hundred important attendees.
What we've learnt from this
Having taken note of these deficiencies, in our latest conference we smoothly & successfully delivered live audio Q&A for a virtual conference with over 700 attendees, all within a fully branded online environment. This was on top of providing multi-layered delegate management.
At time of writing (alongside our tech partners at VETP), we are the only London event agency to have achieved this.