Networking is one of the main points of attraction for the majority of events, and it is often an event element that creates lasting memories for attendees.
Over time, attendees may forget specific details of the sessions they attended at an event, but they will continue to cherish the connections they made and the relationships they began building.
This is why event organizers should make networking a top priority when planning virtual events.
Although traditional networking happens at in-person events where people can see one another face-to-face and meet over for lunch, virtual events, when well-planned, also provide a platform for real human interactions that can result in lasting professional relationships.
Besides, virtual event networking also has the potential to bring more people together without the barriers of distance and travel.
As you incorporate virtual networking opportunities into your event plans, be sure to promote the opportunity as well. Because it’s such a great benefit to attendees, they’ll be more driven to sign up if they know they’ll have access to additional networking opportunities.
Quick Takeaways: Here are some tips to consider to prepare attendees for an engaging networking experience at your virtual event.
Create Users Profiles and Directory Create Breakout Sessions Create Discussion Forums Create Fun Activities and Gameplay Facilitate Networking through Sponsorship and Exhibition
Let’s dive in to learn more!
Create User Profiles and Directory
Effective networking starts with the knowledge of who’s who on the virtual event platform. Each attendee should have a unique profile on the platform that displays personal information such as their name, headshot, job title, professional industry, and relevant interests.
Use the information collected during the registration process to create these profiles, and allow attendees to make updates and build out their personal profiles when the platform goes live.
Also, create a directory containing all attendee profiles on the platform with links to each profile page. This will allow attendees to search for connections and view individuals’ information as they encounter one another during event activities.
Encourage networking by enabling interactive tools on the directory such as messaging, meeting scheduling, 1:1 video calls, and group chats.
Also, allow attendees to link to their social media pages from their profile, inviting future relationships past the event itself. You should make sure these profiles are mobile-responsive or available through an event app if you take this route.
Because the majority of social media interactions take place on mobile devices, this will ensure you’re doing everything you can to enable future interactions between supporters beyond the initial networking activities at your event.
Create Breakout Sessions
Breakout rooms are video meeting rooms created for attendees to gather in small groups to collaborate, brainstorm, network, or discuss a topic of common interest. Breakout rooms bring the event experience closer to each attendee and encourage them to actively participate.
Create breakout groups based on pre-selected topics of interest related to your event target audience. You can automatically assign participants to breakout rooms or let them select rooms
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