The new normal calls for creative solutions for events. We go beyond Zoom meetings and remote team meetings and look at how to make virtual events fun and entertaining.
Social distancing, masks, lockdown – these terms have been part of our everyday life for almost a year. Other terms, however, have almost been pushed out of our vocabulary: Team building events, corporate parties, afterwork get-togethers, live events. They seem to be the exact opposite of what is advocated during the pandemic. But while virtual meetings, home office work and distance learning have become commonplace, few have moved parties and social corporate events into the virtual world. Yet they can be very efficient, flexible, give staff the opportunity to socialize and create a sense of community, especially during these challenging times.
Our agency has been organizing remote events for a number of clients during the pandemic. The repertoire ranges from online press conferences, product launches to virtual corporate parties and remote Christmas parties. The advantages here are obvious: decentralized access via the internet means participants can join in from anywhere, which saves on travel and appeals to a broader audience. Financially, there is no need for an event venue, restaurant or travel costs. In addition, the digital tone makes data collection much easier and offers the possibility of reaching the target group after the end of an event via recorded event elements.
Now this all sounds wonderfully simple, but is it? Although theoretically anyone can organize a digital party today, there is much more to planning a successful virtual event. Besides the technical challenges of choosing an ideal platform and service, what counts most for such a format is the right organization. Timing needs to be perfect lest you bore your audience while they wait for others to log on. The hurdle of accessing the event site and logging on, should be kept as low as possible and to consider is the short attention span that people have when in front of screen. A lot can go wrong during implementation that will ruin the experience. After all, multitasking is required – keeping the conversation going, keeping an eye on the chat and, of course, not forgetting the time. The stress can be alleviated by careful planning and getting a helping hand when needed.
For those who think virtual events sound like boring remote meetings, they haven’t explored the full range: This is where you need to get creative. Last December, we arranged a remote corporate Christmas party for a client in the financial services sector: Staff and their families, including around 80 children, had a special arts and craft kit delivered directly to their homes. Under the direction of an artistic coach, they came together to build their art projects but from the warmth of their own living rooms. Employees were thrilled that an interactive holiday event idea could be found to replace their annual Christmas party, and the kids had loads of fun, enjoying the party and the quality time with their families.
Remote event ideas can include everything from fun cooking and baking parties to exotic cocktail mixing and other do-it-yourself activities. Everything participants need, is delivered directly to their homes including their personalized invitation, attractive package with complete cooking or cocktail set and guidelines on how to join the virtual fun. Even game nights are finding their way into the virtual world. From mystery dinners to escape games to classic card and board games, almost everything can be done online.
Today, any type of event experience can also be had online. Our events team would be happy to provide you with valuable tips and help to make your next virtual event a memorable experience that also offers added value.