Review data from previous meetings
To understand how attendees have interacted online, consider data such as average time on webinars for attendees, average number of questions from the audience after presentations, average number of drop-offs throughout the call, and so on. This will help you anticipate the flow and content of your meetings to maximise participation and engagement.
Understand your goals and intended outcomes
Spend time defining your desired outcome for your meetings. Don’t execute an online/in-person strategy just because you feel it is necessary or to ‘check the box’. Think about your main objectives, and which meeting format will best meet them.
Once you understand your intended outcome, create your content strategy from there. Are you building thought leadership, brand awareness, education or lead generation?
The type of content you use and how it is presented—especially in a virtual environment—should be guided by a clear understanding of what you want to achieve.
Find your storytellers
Attendees value a presenter that keeps them engaged with not only the content, but also the delivery. Charisma goes a long way for virtual meetings; slide after slide of information will drive down engagement and retention. Define your story, set your narrative and ensure the right people are delivering it.
Explore different vehicles for communication
Different attendees learn, and like to be communicated to, in different ways. Consider creating a multi-media approach to your meetings with a variety of formats.
Think a meeting broadcast with live-question polling and engagement, on-going portals for attendee communication or groups for participants to opt into.
Determine your meeting’s on-going touchpoints and possible interactions attendees could have—foster those moments to create your best meeting ROI.
Jeannie Griffin is vice president, product & technology solutions, BCD Meetings & Events.