Virtual Conferences: Audience Engagement
Unlike in-person events or conferences, virtual engagement can prove to be complicated as audiences are easily distracted. However, best practices such as keeping the meeting short and concise, and creating engaging content can maintain healthy audience engagement.
Keep the Meeting Short and Concise
- Unlike a physical event or meeting where attendees may find it difficult to leave, virtual conference participants can quickly leave or skip virtual meetings. As such, speakers who wish to get important points across must keep the event short and concise. The presentation's real value must be packed in the first few slides, as opposed to the last few slides. Speakers must get rid of fluff or unnecessary points and maintain only relevant content.
- Speakers can use clear and simple messaging to help them reach a maximum relevant audience and inform attendees about the value and knowledge they will acquire from the meeting or event. When attendees learn of the pending value and expertise they stand to gain, they can strive to stay attentive, and speakers should make the points as short and concise as possible. Speakers may also lay down clear business objectives for the virtual conference to help them stay on course instead of overextending the meeting with additional points or fluff and boring the audience.
- Speakers who wish to keep the meeting short and concise may plan the agenda carefully and share pointers in advance. Having a plan with specific items listed to cover can help save time and stay on course, so the meeting stays relevant, short, and concise. The speaker may share the schedule ahead of time to the attendees so they can prepare in good time.
Create Engaging Content
- When designing an online meeting or event, speakers can take a maximalist approach to produce engaging content with the help of a creative team. For instance, personalized messaging can be a sure way to see that the audience stays engaged. Alternatively, the use of different techniques may be used to provide every attendee with a space to connect and interact personally, thus keeping them more involved.
- Icebreakers are also a sure way of creating engaging content that can ensure that the audience participates fully and stays interested in the meeting. In-person meetings can help speakers derive more engaging and organic material that will create a virtual connection with the audience.
- While introducing icebreakers for virtual audiences may prove to be a challenge given attendees may be located in a different part of the globe with different cultures and language barriers, speakers may get creative with finding a central point to foster organic conversations. Trivia questions, for instance, are ideal icebreakers and can form natural connectedness that can promote engaging content.
- Keeping the audience engaged throughout a session is not easy. However, speakers may split the roles between attendees and the timekeeper. Having everyone involved can be a great way to keep everyone attentive and give the speaker ideas on the right content to keep an audience engaged. More so, speakers may opt to change roles between participants from meeting to meeting for purposes on the ideal and engaging content. Alternatively, participants may play a game before the meeting and be a great source of ideas for the kind of content that will keep the audience interested.
- Once speakers list down their points, they may consult with the creative team or run by the team to ensure that the content is short and concise and engaging and in line with the agenda of the meeting.