3 Tips for Designing Your First Digital Event

Apr 18, 2017, 14:35 PM by Jennifer Kingen Kush

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Attendees are tuning into all kinds of digital events — one-hour webinars, afternoon product launches, three-day conferences, and other behind-the-screen programming. As the appetite for virtual education and networking continues to grow, there are huge opportunities to expand your organization’s reach. However, opportunities come with obstacles, and the digital landscape can feel very daunting. As you look for the right place and right time to push your organization into the digital space, here are three simple pieces of advice to keep in mind.

Focus on Strategy. One of the most common mistakes that event professionals make is looking for new technologies first. All those bells and whistles are exciting, but technology doesn’t connect your attendees; you do. So, start with a laser focus on your strategy, and identify what you want to accomplish. Do you want to uncover more revenue? Are you looking to expand your audience? Do you want to test new global markets?  How will live-streaming fit into your organization’s larger strategic plan? Once you identify why you want to engage your audience, you’ll have a better understanding of how to do it and what technologies you should use.

Start Small. Your first digital event will not be your biggest or your best. This is your chance to dip your toe in the digital waters and explore the possibilities. Consider choosing just one day to stream live, or only broadcast the program from one room. Focus on creating an engaging and well-produced smaller event. Then, examine the successes and challenges and critical feedback from your audience. Use this data and information to expand and improve your future events.

Hire a Dedicated Team. Similar to planning face-to-face events, there are countless details involved with developing an exceptional online experience. You’ll need to consider expanded IT needs and potential challenges to ensure a high-quality experience. It’s crucial to have a dedicated team to produce the digital event. Look to experienced professionals to support you from AV, streaming, and platform-systems solutions. It’s not feasible to expect your F2F meeting professional to manage both events and/or to have the specialized skill set required for digital events.

Ready to Start?

Check out these complimentary online resources to guide your first steps, and consider earning your DES Certification to empower your team. If you're looking for additional help, the DEI team is available to provide pre-show and on-site consulting and technical assistance.