You may have heard this before: when you’re attending a webinar, there’s really no engagement at all. You’re sitting behind a screen, by yourself, listening to someone present. In order to be truly engaging, an event needs to take place face-to-face.
Is this true? Partially. There are plenty of virtual events that offer no engagement at all, and you are just silently watching your screen with temptations to focus your attention elsewhere. But, that doesn’t mean all virtual events have to be this way! Below we outline some ways to utilize engaging ideas from face-to-face events within your virtual events.
Customized Interactive Lobby – just like you may have slides rotating on the big screen at a conference, you can have slides rotating on the small screen while your attendees wait for the webinar to begin. You can keep them entertained with fun trivia questions, games, and attendee location maps, as well as keep them informed on upcoming events. You can also use this as a sponsorship item to sell for additional revenue and exposure.
Breakout Groups – you don’t have to be sitting around an actual table to be able to easily break out into groups. Using webinar technology, you can easily break different groups of people into separate webinar rooms, encouraging small groups to further discuss and share thoughts on relevant topics. You can then bring all of the breakout groups back together again!
Live Presenter Q&A – you don’t need to be in the same room as someone to ask them questions! Whether through a chat pod, calling in to the webinar, or using video chat, there are multiple ways to encourage audience participation amongst attendees and the presenters..
Chat Channels – when you’re at a place-based event, chatting happens naturally. But, these days we are all so used to chatting online as well – whether through Slack at work, text messages, or commenting on social media channels. So much of our chatter is now happening while we type – instead of talk! Allowing your attendees to chat with one another within your webinar platform is a great way to get them to engage while providing the presenter an opportunity to interact with them as well. It’s also a great place to have a targeted discussion where you can lay out a relevant topic for feedback.
Whiteboards – in specific instances, utilizing a whiteboard during a presentation can be very valuable for the attendees – whether you are writing down pieces of information you are presenting or collecting information from the audience. Utilizing a whiteboard feature during your webinar can have the same impact and effect.
Polls, Quizzes, and Surveys – these are all things that can be done at place-based events but may actually be easier to do when hosting a virtual event! Having informative or fun polls to kick-off the webinar (or throughout the webinar) can help people quickly become and stay engaged. Having a quiz after the event can quickly test the knowledge your attendees gained and can potentially come with continuing education credits and/or a certificate. Lastly, immediately directing your attendees to a post-event survey allows you to gather important feedback in real time.
Set yourself apart! Consider all of your options the next time you host a webinar to keep your participants engaged so they learn more and want to come back for the great experience. To learn more about Blue Sky’s engaging webinar services, click here.