From a helicopter view, virtual events seem as easy as the alphabet. Yet, when zoomed in, the reality is far from our imagination. From planning, execution, to wrap-up, each stakeholder involved goes through so much. It can be overwhelming for event profs who face the music from all sides.
Despite thorough planning, some things that happen are beyond your control. With our list of practical suggestions, you can avoid being caught off guard by such curveballs. Here are five common snags that can occur at events and how you can handle them.
Glitch 1 – Chaos around event details
Chaos is one of the most common problems event planners face at virtual events. It can arise when attendees have either of the two – excessive communication or not enough information. Also, the assumption that attendees will understand the event tech in one go may result in chaos.
Our two cents? Chop the information into bite-sized pieces. Video tutorials, instruction manuals, virtual help desks, and FAQ sections are some ways of minimizing the chaos. Highlight these resources either on the registration page or the virtual event platform. Ensure your platform comes with an amazing support team that can address questions throughout your live event.
Glitch 2 – Missing important event details
Studies suggest that our memory performance gets hit hard under stress. Go back to that hectic morning where you forgot your lunch on the kitchen counter. It usually happens when we’re trying to get multiple things done at the same time.
As an event prof, you understand this better than anyone else. In the rush to complete some big tasks you may forget a small yet important detail. For example, enabling event notifications or uploading an ebook to the resources sections are things you are likely to miss.
A designated customer success team can be of great assistance here. They can help in setting up the missed detail without you having to worry about it as the event progresses.
Hubilo’s designated customer success team resolves queries instantly. And we don’t mean that you just get a support email address or a phone number. You have a person at your event with you the whole time, to help address any issues.
Glitch 3 – Speakers withdrawing at the last minute
Network issues, computer failures, or personal emergencies may sometimes lead to speaker no-shows. Event profs need to brace themselves for such moments and have a plan B in place.
A pre-recorded session is a great way to prepare for this last-minute frenzy. You can also arrange for entertainers to perform, a networking activity, or an ice-breaker session to fill in a time slot in case a speaker backs out.
Glitch 4 – Patchy video stream at live demos
When the video in a live stream gets patchy, it stings the virtual experience like a bee. Video issues arise due to pixelization, poor internet, server outage, or a content delivery network.
Here’s how you can fix this – keep a pre-recorded video of the product demo handy. This will help in retaining attendees, who might otherwise drop off from the stream. Besides, choose an event platform that comes with designated customer support. It will ensure you get the required help whenever you need it.
Glitch 5 – Increased load time of the event site
This is another pitfall that most virtual event platforms witness when attendees try to log in to the event. The load time of the site increases because the servers are overloaded.
With digital impatience on the rise, this glitch may become a major red flag for event organizers. You can fix this glitch by setting the server load to match the estimated number of attendees. This will not only enable smooth login but also enhance the attendee experience.
Glitch 6 – Poor presentation in a session
An attendee’s visual experience can kill or cure a virtual event. A speaker’s delivery, stage presence, presentation of ideas, and quality of visuals are all things that contribute to the success of a session.
When any or all of them go wrong, here’s what event profs can do. Privately ask the speaker or support staff to make necessary changes, like adjusting the camera for a better angle. If you have any trouble with the presentation slides, share a copy with the audience.
Ensure speakers share a universal-sized presentation that works across devices before the event. Lastly, help speakers understand how to give presentations for virtual events during dry runs to get them acquainted with the tech and avoid any predictable errors.
Glitch 7 – Muffled or unclear sound
Almost 30% of the event industry considers bad audio or unclear sound to be the second most annoying part of a virtual event.
Here’s a checklist if you fall prey to audio failure at virtual events:
- Make sure the speaker’s microphone and computer system are synced.
- Do a settings test with the production team to ensure smooth delivery of audio in a session.
- During a session, if only a few attendees are complaining about the sound, ask them to check their volume settings.
- Advice the speakers to keep the microphones closer to them so that the speech delivery is clear and consistent.
- Ask the speakers to join in from a different device or browser in case a problem persists.
- If you have more than one speaker in the same room, ask them to mute themselves when they’re not speaking. This will help you avoid an echo when one of them is speaking.
Let’s fix that last glitch
The biggest glitch of them all is that as event planners, we are too hard on ourselves. Even in live events, a glitch happens – it’s just less obvious.
When the sky comes falling down, act on your event planner’s instinct while fixing issues. Ensure that you have a designated support team with you to share the load. They will be your best allies. Most importantly, be kind to yourself. Mistakes will be made. Things will go wrong. And your attendees will still love being together because of the event you planned.
P.s. Here’s a little something for you and your team.