virtual events

Interactive Tools

The success of virtual events depends mostly on the involvement of the participants. In addition to content quality, one of the most effective ways to engage viewers is the use of various interactive elements during the event. Most virtual event platforms are prepared for this with basic Q&A and LIVE POLLING functions. However, many other tools are also available to engage our audience even more.

In our research, we have divided the interactive elements into two parts:

Interactivity using functions of the event platforms

Q&A function
(questions and answers)
Live Polling function
(voting)
Breakout Room function
(virtual section room)
Előző
Következő

Above are the most widely provided interactivity functions integrated in event platforms by default, therefore their maximum use in engaging participants is highly recommended.

Presentations should ideally be no longer than 12-15 minutes, and include at least one, ideally three live-poll questions. Poll results display after the session as diagrams (this function is also available on most platforms).

Breakout rooms are ideal for working/brainstorming in small groups. Participants are split into groups either randomly by the platform, or based on the host’s priorities. After the available time has elapsed, participants return to the virtual plenary room.

Minor amendments and further creative ideas to utilize above functions even better:

● Content-related quiz instead of a classic poll to engage participant attention. Questions mainly focus on the topic of the presentation less on the opinion of the viewers. Some of the platforms are not able to rate participants therefore this is rather a fun factor than a competition. In case we want to arrange a more complex quiz we need to involve an external platform (see below).

● On virtual platforms the work is much more efficient in smaller groups. This adds an additional interactive element to the session, without any extra IT upgrade. Nevertheless, many external applications can help increase productivity within the breakout rooms (see below).

● During larger events, random allocation of participants into breakout rooms allows teams to mingle and to get to know each other.

Interactivity by involving external applications

Stormboard
This solution allows online/remote brainstorming without the need for all participants to be active at the same time, yet users can monitor developments of the "stormboards" embedded in the event platform. The results come in anonymously – source of the ideas is not revealed –, which may be inspirational also for participants who are typically inactive in brainstorming sessions. During large events, a separate "stormboard" can be assigned to each breakout room.
More
Virtual Team Mixer
This platform allows random audio/video conversations within a virtual event, even in different sessions and Team Mixer rooms. Its advantage is that mixing criteria can be defined based on the participants' profile, to avoid for example, that employees from the same department are grouped together. The solution is not available online but can be integrated into an event platform upon request. It is especially useful for events with a large number of attendees (over 5.000).
Kahoot
Kahoot is a playful quiz platform with free-of-charge basic functions such as text or image-based questions and answers with a scoring system.
More
Előző
Következő

These external applications increase engagement beyond the default functions of event platforms.

The challenge is however, that participants have to register for them one by one, stay active and switch between parallel platforms during the virtual event

Furthermore, attendees need very precise instructions in advance how to register and sign in to the external platform so they are well prepared to join, to avoid unmanageable technical issues during the live event, especially with a large number of participants.

Social Media Wall
A social media interface integrated into the event platform allowing direct posts about the event through personal profiles.
Meet & Greet
An opportunity to meet event stars / celebrities online, considered / sold as a privilege.
Multi-camera view
Especially during hybrid events it is important to provide exclusive opportunities for online guests who cannot attend in person Multi-camera view - switching between different camera views during a presentation or performance – is one of them.
Előző
Következő

More complex and costly alternatives

Some tools are available on certain event platforms or can be developed and added as an extra feature, however these additions are typically very expensive.

Interactivity using functions of the event platforms

Q&A function
(questions and answers)
Live Polling function
(voting)
Breakout Room function
(virtual section room)
Előző
Következő

Functions most often provided by event platforms

As the platform features these functions, it is worthwhile to take advantage of them and keep participants staying tuned. It is recommended to have 12-15 minutes of presentations with a poll posted at least once but ideally three times by presentation. The poll results must be displayed (in the form of a diagram) after they have been closed (this function is also available on most of the platforms).

Breakout rooms provide opportunities for working/thinking in small groups. The platform randomly groups participants into teams, or determined by the host, they are divided into smaller groups and “sent” to the B/O rooms. When the available time has elapsed, participants are called back to the virtual plenary room.

The above existing functions can be used even better with minor modifications and creative ideas:

● Ha például azt szeretnénk, hogy a résztvevők az előadásokra koncentráljanak, akkor a klasszikus poll (szavazás) helyett kvíz formájában tesszük fel a kérdéseket, amelyek az előadások tartalmára vonatkoznak. Ilyen formában nem a résztvevők véleményére vagyunk kíváncsiak, hanem arra, hogy figyeltek-e, és ennek megfelelően kijelölünk helyes válaszokat. A platformok többsége azonban nem képes pontozni ilyen esetben a résztvevőket, úgyhogy a legtöbbször ez inkább csak szórakoztatás szinten működik, mintsem vetélkedőként. Ha fejlettebb formában szeretnénk kvízeket alkalmazni, ahhoz külső platformot kell bevonnunk.

A virtuális platformokon zajló, kisebb létszámú munka bizonyítottan hatékonyabb. Ennek megfelelően, ha a résztvevőket nem előadásokra, hanem egy közös munkára invitáljuk a breakout roomok-ba, akkor máris egy interaktív elemet adunk hozzá az eseményhez, mindenfajta IT fejlesztés nélkül. A breakout room-okon belül azonban számos más, külső platform is bevonható, amely tovább növelheti a produktivitást.

● For larger events, random allocation to breakout rooms allows teams to mingle and participants to get to know each other.

Interactivity by involving external applications

Stormboard
The solution allows for online/remote brainstorming. The significant advantage is that brainstorming can be done independently, so the participants don't need to be active at the same time. If necessary, the users can monitor developments of "stormboards" embedded in the event platform. As another advantage, it can be used anonymously, i.e., we do not see who came up with the given idea. Accordingly, it also inspires and engages participants who are not used to being active in a typical brainstorming session. For large events, a separate "stormboard" can be assigned to each breakout room.
More
Virtual Team Mixer
This platform allows random audio/video conversations within a virtual event. You can create a Virtual Team Mixer session, a random live video chat divided into several Team Mixer rooms. The advantage is that correlations or exclusions can be set based on the participants' profile. For example, employees belonging to a department can be excluded from a group. The solution is not available online. It can be integrated into an event platform on request. Especially useful for events with a large number of attendees (over 5.000).
Kahoot
Egy játékos, bizonyos funkciókkal ingyenesen igénybe vehető kvíz, ahol pontozásos módszerrel beállíthatók a kérdések, képi kvízkérdések, illetve a helyes válaszok is.
More
Előző
Következő

We are briefly introducing some of the external platforms that are able to increase engagement.

The only challenge with linked tools is that participants have to register separately and be active either on the event or the external platform during the virtual event.

For external platforms, we need to give participants precise instructions before the virtual event on how to register and log in so that everyone is prepared for the event. Think about how hard it would be to help 1,000 people check-in if the event had already started.

Social Media Wall
A social media interface integrated into the event platform, which allows you to post directly about the event from your own profile.
Meet & Greet
An online meeting opportunity with event stars/celebrities that can be treated/sold as a privilege during an online event.
Multi-camera view
Especially in hybrid events- we should provide extra options only as privileges for online guests who cannot attend the event physically. E.g., you can choose from different camera views during a presentation or performance.
Előző
Következő

More complex and costly alternatives

Some tools are available on certain event platforms or can be developed and added as an extra feature. But these features are usually very costly, their implementation is only possible if an adequate budget is available.

© SPECIAL EFFECTS ltd.
kraftwerk design & production llc.
all rights reserved. 2020