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Virtual Events with Webex Events
Virtual Events with Webex Events

Scale, save, and engage with virtual Webex Events

Daniel Murphey avatar
Written by Daniel Murphey
Updated over a week ago

A remote-first world empowered by global connectivity has transformed the events industry, bringing hybrid and virtual events into the spotlight previously dominated by in-person experiences. While we can't deny the impact and value of in-person events, virtual events help event organizers reach a broader audience and engage attendees in innovative ways.

This article provides an overview of some basic questions and considerations for hosting a virtual event with Webex Events.

💡 Keep in mind, Webex Events powers virtual, in-person, and hybrid events! To learn how Webex Events takes in-person and hybrid events to the next level, follow these links:

What is a virtual event?

A virtual event is an online-only, multi-session event that delivers the value of an in-person event in a virtual environment. Attendees interact with each other and join live streams on the web, rather than meeting in a physical location.

Why host a virtual event?

Here are a few key reasons to consider hosting a virtual event:

  • Expand your audience - Going virtual opens your event to many more people! Virtual events let you connect with audiences around the globe and include attendees who otherwise couldn't attend.

  • Embrace sustainability - Save the environment one virtual event at a time. Virtual events reduce food and material waste and carbon emissions due to travel, and they remove the need for printed paper materials like event signage and paper agendas.

  • Save money - Make your budget go further by saving on travel, venues, vendors, signage, food, badge printing... You get the idea.

  • Personalize the attendee experience - User data lets you seamlessly personalize the event experience. Use groups to make sure attendees only interact with the content that's most relevant to them, including personalized notifications, discussion boards, and more. With Webex Events, this is a benefit that every type of event can take advantage of!

  • Provide sponsorship return on Investment (ROI) - That's right, you can absolutely have effective event sponsorship with a virtual event.

  • Crisis-proof your event - Life happens in a big way sometimes. Going virtual can protect your event from impacts due to unforeseen world events. Virtual events are possible anywhere there's a stable internet connection!

What are the components of a virtual event?

It's important to think through the participant experience for your virtual event the same way that you would for an in-person or hybrid event — from start to finish. The main components to consider are:

  • Registration

  • Content Distribution

  • Sponsorship

  • Attendee Engagement & Networking

This probably sounds familiar! It's not all that different from an in-person event. The principal difference is the increased need to manage participants' attention while considering each of these.

What features does Webex Events offer for virtual events?

Nearly all Webex Events features are useful for virtual events! Our feature overview article has details and screenshots for each one. Want some inspiration and a head start building your Webex Event? We offer event templates you can fill in with your own information. Read more about templates in our Event App Setup Basics article.

What are some recommended tactics for going virtual?

  • Hire an emcee — Having a great emcee on-camera during live streams keeps the energy up, facilitates smooth communication and transition, and acts as a point of contact.

  • Embrace virtual sponsorship offerings — Offer your sponsors the opportunity to sponsor sessions, banner ads, splash screens, virtual giveaways, notifications, game challenges, and more. Read our Showcase Sponsors guide for a mountain of other opportunities and ideas.

  • Facilitate sponsor connections — Make it easy for attendees to indicate their interest in a sponsor, exhibitor, or speaker, and to interact with them using the Attendee Calls to Action in Sponsor profiles.

    A Sponsor Profile on the Mobile App.
  • Manage participant distractions — Create a central hub for all event content, removing the need for participants to leave the Event App at all. Embed live streams, recordings, session collateral, and more. We recommend shorter, more targeted sessions than you would typically put on for an in-person event. Demos, interactive "hands-on" sessions, and case studies are all great options.

  • Rehearse and test — Have your presenters do a rehearsal the day before the event with the same technology they'll use on event day. Test your Event App beforehand to confirm that everything works exactly how you want it to. These actions help minimize tech issues and get everyone on the same page.

  • Foster engagement — Engagement also helps manage attendee distractions. ☝️Support engagement with moderated discussion boards, live polling and Q&A, and the Game feature. Send automated session reminders and announcements to help increase attendance and engagement.

  • Encourage networking — Give your attendees multiple networking options with chat features, networking Game challenges, the Wall, and Shake & Connect (Branded Apps only for virtual events). Video Rooms are also a fantastic way to facilitate informal “Birds of a Feather” meetups, where people connect and talk about topics of interest. Use surveys and polling features to crowdsource the topics.

Next steps

We've covered a lot of why Webex Events is the best companion for putting on an amazing virtual event. There's even more to explore!

Questions? Chat with us, email, or attend a Face to Face session.

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