When it comes to building a virtual meeting, one of our mantras is this: “Design your meeting experience first. Choose the platform second.”
Time and again we have seen situations where an organization likes a particular platform—perhaps because of a partnership or a prior experience attending a virtual event—but soon ends up running into multiple complications and barriers. Then the realization hits: This platform doesn’t support our desired experience.
Every platform has pros and cons. The infrastructure and user experience are dramatically different from one to another. That’s why we cannot say this loudly enough: It is essential to design the meeting before choosing the platform that you will use to execute it. For instance, there are great platforms for sales meetings and others for scientific meetings, but they deliver very different experiences.
How to get started? Be clear on your end goals: Do you want attendees to be educated? Inspired? Entertained? Do they need to network? Or earn CE credits?
Once you define your goals and the experience you want to deliver, you can get started on identifying the right platform. Here are some questions to ask vendors:
• What is the largest number of attendees that you’ve had on the platform at one time?
• How many events have you had run concurrently on the platform?
• How many events are happening over the dates of my event?
• What tech integrations are included in your platform? For example, does your platform have its own video-delivery mechanism?
• Can we speak to a client who had similar goals as ours for their virtual event?
Matt Hughes is director of corporate sales at Projection.