I’ll be the first to admit, I’ve worn a company branded Patagonia vest and scoped out my competitors' booths on the floors of the Moscone Center in San Francisco at Dreamforce for more years than I can count. I saw on CNBC this week that the streets of SF will be pretty empty this year, compared to the 10's of thousands that typically flock to the Bay Area for Salesforce's flagship event. This year will be only 500 people in person, while they promote the larger event online. My heart yearns for the independently owned small businesses in SF (please keep supporting small business y’all!), I’ll also admit, seeing Fleetwood Mac as the headliner for 2019 was PRETTTY cool.
While some people are excited for $14 airport beers and last minute middle seats, not all of us are exclaiming to “get me to the first in person conference.” There’s a large contingency that are excited to learn from industry experts while selecting their own snacks and tossing in a load of laundry.
Whether this is your first rodeo, or you’re accustomed to the 5A to midnight+ days of hosting an event, Virtual Events allow you to extend the reach of the experts you’ve brought to the stage. Increasing your brand presence, facilitating collaboration, and putting smiles on faces - now’s your time to shine.
We’ve interviewed Event experts and marketers around the globe, showed them Spot, and asked for their feedback on how to incorporate aspects of in person events on a Virtual Platform. So without further adieu - here’s a few tips on hosting a kick ass event in Spot!
(I’m going to cover this in two segments - things to be mindful of as the Event Czar, and next week, the experience your attendees will have.)
Tip #1 - Choosing the right space:
We’ve hosted hundreds of events already, and thought, these event wizards don’t want to have to do the hard part... so we did it for you! We’ve shared our most successful event space as a template. A few clicks to the Spotitorium and the hardest part is done!
The Spotitorium is built for 50 people in seats, plus your presenters on stage. It includes 6 breakout rooms and 1 patio gathering space. In each breakout room, presenters can share their screen with the audience. Audio is contained to each room - just like an in person event.
Is your event larger event than 50? Spotitorium XL is in final architectural review, keep an eye out for it soon!
Got an idea for a super cool space? Feel free to leverage the Room Editor, or contact us to talk about it! Just drop me an email - AJ@Spotvirtual.com
Tip #2 - Set up your event:
Every space is customizable, all the way down to the hex code color of the chairs to match your brand palette. This level of flexibility allows you to place Sponsor logos around the space, and your logo on the projector screen behind the stage.
If you’re interested in an Event Consultation, book some time with me!
Tip #3 - Finishing touches:
An event wouldn’t be an event, without the host throwing in some surprises! Here’s a few crowd favorites: Renaming the meeting rooms to match the theme of the event, loading a playlist via Soundcloud for some pump up music when participants enter the room, and hitting the Gong to announce the keynote’s about to begin.
If you’re hosting a large networking event, and want to promote inclusivity, I recommend a large patio, pictured above, paired with Spatial Audio. It makes natural conversations a breeze, and encourages attendees to converse amongst each other.
Want to take it a step further? Set up Table Topics with stickie notes on the tabletop to drive conversation.
Tip #4 - How do we get 'em here?
You got ‘em signed up, so now you gotta get ‘em there. Rather than working with bus companies to shuttle people around the city, it’s a few clicks to curate an Event specific unique URL.
If you’re hosting prep sessions with your speakers, I recommend inviting them as a Member of your Spot room, that way they can get comfortable with enabling their microphone and sharing their screen ahead of the event. Grab time with me if you want to discuss this more!
Tip #5 - PRESENTER MODE!!
Keeping your attendees attention focused on the presenter is the most important part of the event. When you’re ready to go live, enable Presenter Mode, and get ready for the best virtual event you’ve ever hosted!
- Once you turn on Presenter Mode, all of your guests will be automatically muted, and their camera will be disabled.
- If you’re facilitating a Q&A session, attendees can “Raise their hand.” This will prompt you as the host to acknowledge their question, and enable them as a speaker, which will allow your guest to turn on their microphone for their question.
- When your presenter starts to share their screen, it will automatically be presented as a full screen to all of your attendees.
- You won’t need to worry about distractions for your audience, all other notifications and noises around the office will be muted when Presenter mode is enabled.
Next week, we’ll cover your attendees experience inside of Spot. Check back soon for updates, and email me (AJ@Spotvirtual.com) if you have any questions!