How to apply learnings from offline events, to the online space

Offline event… that’s an oxymoron, right? We’re creatures of digital habits, taught to coax content out of the most mundane of moments. Morning coffee runs, captured reminiscent of a Bon Appetit article, casual hangs finessed to feel like a soiree filled with A-list celebs. We’re unspoken pros at procuring our digital ‘brands’, even if inadvertently. Attend an event? Of course it will grace the Instagram stories of its guests. 

Enter 2020. We’re toying with our new ‘normal’ for the foreseeable. Void of morning coffee runs, casual hangs and engaging events. We are patrons of a tech-driven revolution in which digital dominates all, resulting in industries toggling to find a new sense of navigation. Faced with a foundational uprooting, the events industry is forced to forgo a drastic facelift. Without IRL pop-ups, activations and events, we’re exclusively working with the single most adaptable medium yet— the internet. What actually dictates success in a digital event? We’ve aligned our thoughts for you.

Don’t overcomplicate things

Why are you hosting your digital event? It should be decipherable in a sentence or two. In order to engage a digital audience, you have to think like a digital audience. In fighting to capture fleeting attention spans (with inevitable bouts of distraction) your event’s preliminary promotion copy should be short, catchy and to-the-point. You need to know your exact deliverables as a company and for your audience.

Sit down, stay a while

You’ve engaged an audience for your digital event— now comes the jazz hands. You’re experts in your brand, storytellers of your event’s purpose. It’s up to you to make the magic. Find the perfect guest speakers to illuminate narrative pillars of your brand’s purpose, provide group moments for divine inspiration. This is the fun part. Find ways to grow and stretch creatively, by way of technology. Stimulating the audience with those surprise and delight moments, total engagement is the key!

We said yes!

Keep your audience engaged. This requires human checkpoints throughout your digital event. Bear in mind your event’s length and anticipate the needs which may arise for the duration. Allow moments of absorption and contemplation, making time for group checkpoints. Let your digital audience speak up— you might just spark a conversation of a lifetime, catapulting the conversation into uncharted territories of success. 

Are we still friends?

You’ve reached ‘le fin’. Find a way to stay in touch with your audience. Although the event is over, the conversation doesn’t have to be. Make it not only easy but an attractive choice to keep up with what’s next for your brand’s activation. This engagement can be found in interaction-based freebies to group prompts. This is the perfect time to express your ‘thank you’ for attending your event. Finally, do not forget your CTA!

A thread running through these tips can be defined by a single phrase — be human. As we find a soft spot at the intersection of technology and design, it’s important we remain empathetic and excitable while developing these digital touchpoints for passion. Explore, and push boundaries. It’s up to us to help forge new methods of human connection in these times of solitude. As a part of the events industry, it’s up to us to remain the masters of making magic.

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