Meeting the challenge of corporate events in todays new world where people are reluctant to meet in person
Providing the Internet infrastructure for virtual and hybrid conferences and exhibitions that actually works for organisers, exhibitors, speakers and delegates
Many conferences and exhibitions are going on-line either in full or as a hybrid blend of on and off-site delivered on-line.
In these challenging times it is difficult to forecast how many delegates will travel to a venue and spend time in the relatively close company of strangers. They may say they are coming but, on the day, change their mind.
Just as important there is a growing reluctance from exhibitors’ staff to travel and be exposed to potential harm.
This creates a quandary for event organisers.
Enter the Virtual and Hybrid event model. Part on site and part on-line. Furthermore, any sessions can be recorded and made available to be viewed on-line after the event creating both a resource and record for those who attended the event and a revenue opportunity from post event access.
There are many suppliers of software tools in this market, some are better than others, and they come at all sorts of price points and sophistication.
Congress from The Virtual Conference Company provides high value profitable wins for organisers, exhibitors and delegates alike. Congress has deliberately few frills, is highly customisable providing solid and reliable ways to achieve the main reason for the event – creating, building and strengthening customer relationships.
How do exhibitors benefit?
Congress from The Virtual Conference Company makes it easy for Exhibitors because delegates can speak to them whenever they want to during the event.
In effect exhibitors are always available via their on-line video conference booth. The exhibitor can show the visitor on-line presentations and images and send them documents through the platform.
How often has a delegate walked on to your stand and the ideal member of staff to speak to them has gone away or worse is not attending the exhibition. Exhibitors can instantly transfer a delegate to a more relevant colleague or schedule a video meeting for another time.
We see this being used extensively where the delegates enquiry is best be served by access to an exhibitor’s scare resource like the CEO or a product specialist. This also means these scare resources do not have to take time out and travel to an event.
Exhibitors use the well-established lead tracking features in Congress to record details of any enquiries, conversations and follow up actions.
In extreme circumstances an exhibitor could have a totally unmanned stand at a physical exhibition. Simply supplement the normal stand dressing and graphics with one or more touch or voice activated screens so that on-site delegates can easily speak to the sales staff who are back in the office.
What’s in it for the Delegates?
Delegates benefit because they use Congress to manage their schedule, review exhibitors’ offerings, speak with exhibitors, join speaker sessions, ask questions of speakers and network with one 2 one meetings with other delegates both before and during the event.
One 2 one meetings can be in person on on-site or via the built in video meeting. No need for Zoom or Skype. This means It is entirely up to the delegate if they wish to share their contact details.
The shape of traditional conferences is changing. Speakers presentations are getting shorter and more focused. This is very much influenced by the on-line revolution of short TED Talks and YouTube presentations. The conference of the future will have many more sessions than the traditional format of plenary session followed by two either side of lunch and a wrap up session by a big speaker.
Rambling forty-five minute presentations are being replaced with focused 10 – 20 minute bite size talks.
Presentations can be streamed live through Congress or pre-recorded and delivered as if live as well as being available after the event.
Pre-recorded presentations have the advantage that they are rehearsed and typically of a higher quality especially from the delegates point of view.
Pre-recorded presentations are often followed by a live interactive Q&A session that can involve more than one speaker even if they are in different locations.
How does Congress work to help you run and event
The Virtual Conference Company provides all the technical services to manage a virtual or hybrid event using Congress – the virtual conference platform. We provide the technical muscle to make it very easy for you to manage a virtual event.
As well as the Congress software platform we can provide as much of the video and Internet technology you need to run a virtual event that is as impressive as a traditional live event.
As an example, using green screen technology makes it relatively straight forward to have the same background for a pre-recorded presentation and a live Q&A. Simply wearing the same clothes helps create the illusion of everything being live.
Delegates to the conference use Congress to send questions to the speakers before, during and even after the event. Speakers can manage the questions themselves or more realistically during a live session, a session moderator will pre-filter, grade and often combine / reword questions so that it makes more sense to the speaker.
The event organiser controls when and who can ask the speakers questions. This leads to several interesting revenue opportunities based on the type of ticket a delegate has been given or purchased.
As an example:
Gold ticket holders could be allowed to send questions to a speaker in advance of the session – allowing the speaker to cover the delegates needs in their presentation. Similarly, a speaker could respond directly to a gold delegate before the event or even arrange a one 2 one meeting.
VIP delegates could have the right to ask questions both before and after the event – giving them privileged access to the speaker that others do not have.
Ordinary delegates may only have access during the presentation, and they may have to watch at least 5 minutes of the session before they can ask a question.
The possibilities are endless. During a session, the speaker selects which questions they are going to answer using a simple screen on a tablet computer. They can choose to display it on a screen or projector behind them or even on to a video link page during a live streamed session.
Using Congress, session speakers can conduct polls both before and during a session to test audience reaction and involvement. Again, the organiser can decide when and who can answer such polls.
Typically, polls are restricted to delegates that have been actively watching and involved with the session either on-site or for a minimum time on-line.
Exit polls can be conducted both on-site and on-line. These are designed to be simple – did the session meet your needs on a scale of 1 – 5 as an example. In the physical venue tablet computers on stands are set up to catch delegates as they leave the auditorium. The on-line the exit poll automatically pops up as the delegate leaves the session screen to go to another part of the system.
There is much more to Congress -the virtual event platform and The Virtual Conference Company.
Give us a call to for a no obligation chat about what you are trying to achieve.
We may not end up working together but we are always happy to share our experience to make your job easier.
Restarting your conference and exhibition business
What happens next?
There is so much more to The Virtual Conference Company and Congress – the virtual event platform.
Give us a call to for a no obligation chat about what you are trying to achieve.
We may not end up working together but we are always happy to talk and share our experience so that you can learn about virtual nd hybrid events and how to make your job easier. Call us now!
“I can’t believe it took us this long to make a change. So happy that we did.”
CEO of a conference company
Get In Touch
You can reach us by phone on +44 (0)20 8088 3450 or +44 (0)1663 308 250 – it only takes a few seconds to arrange a Skype or Zoom video call.
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We are in the events business. We say we work normal UK office hours but often take calls in the evenings and weekends because that’s when events happen especially if you are outside of the UK. If we are asleep leave a message
You can reach us by phone on +44 (0)20 8088 3450 or +44 (0)1663 308 250