Corporate events, much like all other types of events, have been confined to the laptop screens since the pandemic struck. There is no getting away from the office for a weekend retreat or the annual sales kickoff anymore. These events form a key part of internal and external marketing efforts for companies. But let’s admit it, they aren’t usually the most exciting.
That’s exactly why it becomes important for you to create engagement that encourages high levels of interaction among the participants of your corporate event. They don’t have to be yay! yay! yay! from start to finish, but a few well-placed activities can add the much-needed oomph to them. Integrating some play and networking into various types of business events can help take engagement through the roof.
If you’re wondering how you can effectively use virtual events to engage with employees and customers, here are six ways for you to consider.
Companies can use a virtual conference to connect with their employees and customers on a specific theme. When mixed with light-hearted moments of engagement, learning is more impactful and memorable.
Virtual conference engagement ideas:
- Build networking and connection moments in your conference. Incentivize every interaction that attendees have. Keep track of these interactions and display the winner on the Leaderboard of your virtual event platform.
- Conferences are usually long, so keep your sessions few in number but engaging and valuable for attendees. Build a connection between your brand and your audience by using an animated background featuring your brand logo, colors, and more in the speaker sessions.
- Get a digital live scriber on board to create real-time illustrations of the speakers and of informative takeaways. These colorful, graphical representations will keep the attendees hooked on your virtual conference platform. You can also use them as collateral for post-event marketing with customers and for knowledge sharing with employees.
2. Product Launches
After months of fine-tuning and perfecting every feature, few things are more exciting to a company than the big debut of their latest release. Product launches are targeted towards current and potential clients, and often, potential investors too.
Product launch engagement ideas:
- Fuel anticipation for the event by releasing a video teaser a week prior to the launch. Maximize exposure for the product features by hosting an exclusive Ask Me Anything (AMA) session with the product lead, the CPO, or the CEO in the Breakout Rooms.
- Attendees who are keen to understand the product will always be on the lookout for an opportunity to know more. Build a 1:1 rapport with them and give them a detailed, personalized tour of your latest release using the virtual demo Rooms.
At a recently held product launch at Hubilo, we used our in-house broadcasting studio to give the attendees a close-to-real-life run-through of the product. The engagement level soared as the streaming quality kept the attendees in awe and rid them of the usual webinar fatigue.
Another groundbreaking example of a product launch is that of Rihanna’s Fenty Skin skincare brand. It was a virtual house party where each touchpoint gave users a feeling of exclusivity and uniqueness, making them feel like they were actually at a house party.
3. Training and Workshops
Workshops and training are dreaded by most employees. And if the activity is on a dry topic and they have a mountain of work to get back to, driving employee engagement becomes important yet super tricky.
Training and workshop engagement ideas:
- Get attendees out of their silos via informal fireside chat sessions. Candid conversations between sessions in the virtual lounges can be a good break from the knowledge-heavy sessions.
- During ongoing sessions, keep topic-related polls ready for attendees to give their answers, opinions, and feedback. Bolster your speaker sessions with engagement tools like quirky emojis and Q&As in the chat window.
- Welcome new employees formally using a virtual event platform fully branded as per your brand guidelines. Customize their induction experience using your company colors, logos, banners, and other relevant images to ensure they feel that they are a part of a larger organization, though virtually.
4. Community Events
Your employees put in a lot of effort year-round to help grow and better your business, and an internal company event is a great way to show appreciation. These team- building events create memorable moments that become the stuff of (virtual) water cooler conversation for months or years to come.
Community event engagement ideas:
- If your budget permits, take the help of Augmented Reality (AR) to create a Scavenger Hunt for your employees. It will sky-rocket your attendees’ excitement levels.
- A virtual mixology session is another trendy way to bring your employees together. Send them the mixology kit before the event and get them started for a session of ‘Cocktails with Colleagues’.
- An evergreen way of building employee engagement is a selfie or ‘replicate the Netflix character’ contest. Ask contestants to post pictures of themselves on the Event Feed. Award the prize to the post that gets the most likes. And voila! You have some quirky pictures that people are going gaga over and a highly engaged audience.
5. Sales Kickoff
A virtual sales kickoff meeting is crucial because it leaves your sales team feeling inspired, confident, valued, and more prepared to seek and close leads.
Sales kickoff engagement ideas:
- An all-time loved activity for a sales kickoff is the photo booth. Have a virtual photo booth to create memories, celebrate milestones, and commemorate the special achievements of your sales team. Print these photos and send them to the employees via post.
- Live bands, magic shows, exclusive performances by singers, and other entertainment shows are also great ways to raise the energy bar at sales kickoffs.
We had the Drag Taste performing at one of Hubilo’s closing ceremonies and the attendees just didn’t want to head towards the exit button!
A roadshow is a company’s route to potential investors and a way to whip up interest among prospective clients. The best thing about roadshows is that they can be designed to scale. Once you have them figured out, gather the KPIs, analyze them and get ready to host a bigger and better virtual show.
Roadshow engagement ideas:
- Drive engagement at your roadshow by getting a moderator/s who can hold your show together. They will moderate sessions, make important announcements, fill awkward silences and, in short, be the lynchpin of your event.
- Earmark some time for ‘Happy Hour Networking’ to allow your audience to gather in a Lounge, have 1:1 chats with investors, or enter an Exhibitor Booth for product demos.
- If you have sponsors and exhibitors at your roadshow, you can put the Demo Rooms to great use. Host a ‘battle it out’ competition between exhibitors where they will be given three minutes each to do a live demo of their product. Featuring sponsors and exhibitors through this kind of competition is a creative way to provide engaging demos while also getting the audience involved.
Finally, when planning your corporate event, always make sure that you consider what your employees and customers want. The more your attendees get involved, the better the connection they form with your company. An event with sprinkles of entertainment and options for different types of interaction will always leave your employees and your customers feeling attached to your brand. So, make sure you spend some time making those virtual hours worthwhile and memorable.
Hosting your event on a powerful virtual event platform that’s built to deliver audience engagement will make your job as an event organizer 100x easier. Hubilo has got the industry’s largest suite of engagement features. Check it out now.