Virtual events were becoming more popular before the pandemic, but their growth has skyrocketed in the last two years. Although physical events will return, statistics indicate that many businesses and organizations will continue to utilize virtual or hybrid events to engage with customers, clients and employees. From conferences and trade shows to virtual networking events, there is scope to plan any kind of event using an event management platform. Event software should make the process seamless and stress-free, optimize outcomes, facilitate engagement and interaction and create memorable, unique experiences.
10 reasons you should invest in a virtual event platform
Planning and executing a virtual or hybrid event is not always easy. Events, conferences, trade shows and social gatherings can have an incredibly positive impact, but success is never guaranteed. Using an innovative, ground-breaking virtual event platform can make a difference. Second Stage is a unique event management platform, which offers organizations a vast array of benefits through impressive features, user options and capabilities. Here are 10 reasons to consider investing in virtual and hybrid event software.
- Engage with your audience
One of the most significant benefits Second Stage offers is the ability to engage with attendees and audiences on a deeper level. Engagement is key for facilitating and encouraging communication, but it also contributes to a superior guest or client experience. People tuning in from home and those streaming conferences want to feel like they are part of the event. Second Stage goes above and beyond competitors like Pathable by offering attendees the chance to get involved. Whether you are organizing one-to-one sessions with employees or you wish to chat with large groups during a conference, it’s possible to utilize mobile-friendly engagement functions to set up private, group or team chats or encourage open discussion and brainstorming.
Statistics suggest that audience engagement is the most significant challenge for event organizers, and 49% of those in charge of planning events view attendee engagement as the single most important factor when measuring the success of an event (source). Using event or trade show software or a virtual platform for a conference or sales event makes it easier for organizations to engage with audiences, build relationships and deliver an enjoyable, unforgettable experience.
Second Stage also offers a handy agenda management tool, which enables attendees to plan their day, mark favorites, set reminders and filter search results to find the talks, training sessions, demonstrations, workshops or speeches and presentations that interest them most.
- Promoting interaction
Audience participation can improve engagement and lead to superior attendee experiences. With Second Stage, there is a broad spectrum of options when it comes to interacting with audiences and groups and encouraging them to share ideas, thoughts and opinions. As an organizer, you can ask questions and use polls and surveys to gauge the mood of the room and gain an insight into peoples’ opinions.
Engagement tools are mutually beneficial for event planners and clients and attendees. With Second Stage, you can launch new questions as and when you want, developing your presentation in real-time and responding to reactions to other questions. For guests and audiences, the chance to get involved, share thoughts and perspectives and have a voice makes the event more memorable, interesting and meaningful. According to figures from Markletic Event Research, polling is the most common method used to keep attendees engaged during virtual events.
Data is incredibly valuable for organizations and companies working towards key performance objectives. When using a virtual event platform like Second Stage, organizers can benefit from impressive analytics tools and features, which go beyond those offered by other event software, including Pathable and Bizzabo. Second Stage gives you access to attendee analytics, as well as event insights. You can collect, analyze and use data to evaluate the overall success of the event, but you can also go further with Second Stage using more granular data to monitor audience interactions and understand how attendees are engaging during the event. You can also utilize event insights to highlight potential weaknesses, streamline operations and make improvements for your next event.
Gaining access to data is beneficial for event planners, but it is only advantageous if you can actually use it. Second Stage has designed a functional, accessible dashboard with seamless integration, which means that you can connect any business system to your event to obtain and analyze the information you need.
- Attracting attention
There are multiple types of virtual and hybrid events. In many cases, organizations plan and host events with the intention of promoting their brand, pushing sales or creating a buzz around products and services. If you organize events aimed at attracting attention, using a virtual event platform is an excellent idea. With Second Stage, you can use push notifications, personalized features and customizable themes and branding to set your business apart and encourage your audience to get involved and take an interest in the presentation, pitch or speech. There is also an option to enable attendees to plan their schedules to ensure they don’t miss anything.
Virtual events have become more prominent and popular in the last few years and one of the main benefits is the capability to reach vast audiences. With social media integration, live streaming and the option to invite thousands of guests or clients to an event at one time, connecting with large audiences has never been more achievable.
- Organizing seamless, high-quality events
Virtual events offer wide-ranging benefits for companies and organizations, particularly in the wake of the pandemic, but they present unique challenges. Just as events can be memorable for all the right reasons, there is also a risk of attendees remembering a virtual conference or a webinar for the wrong reasons. When planning any kind of virtual or hybrid event, quality is key. Figures from Wild Apricot suggest that a third of respondents who cancelled events in 2020 did so because they feared they could not deliver an event that offered the same value as an in-person event (source). With Second Stage, it has never been easier to stage a seamless, slick, professional event.
Offering an in-house production team, Second Stage helps businesses to elevate events. Features include high-quality enterprise video, custom graphics, live streaming event integration and light and room design options.
Quality is essential, as audiences and attendees will form perceptions and impressions of brands and organizations based on the events they host. Studies suggest that the most common annoyances include poor connection, low-quality microphones and bad camera images.
Customization plays an integral role in event organizers being able to promote the brand and celebrate its unique identity. Second Stage offers a dazzling array of customization options to help you connect with audiences, spread the word and show the audience what your brand is all about. You can select different colors and fonts and create a unique event URL to tell your story in your own way.
In addition to bespoke design features, Second Stage offers the option to capitalize on social media aggregation to boost engagement and reach wider audiences. Organizers and attendees can post and share content creating a collaborative, inclusive, interactive experience.
Second Stage is a market leader in the field of customization and social media integration. Not all virtual event platforms offer the option to align social feeds with events. By taking advantage of this tool, event planners, company representatives, employees and guests can get more out of the experience and there is also an opportunity to strengthen relationships in the future. Social media provides a valuable platform for engaging with audiences long after the event and can be instrumental in lead creation and conversion. Around 90% of consumers buy from brands they follow on social media.
The pandemic has highlighted the value of meetings, conferences, trade shows, networking events and social gatherings, such as award shows. Thanks to technology and innovative software provided by Second Stage, organizations can benefit from seamless virtual and hybrid events without any anxiety linked to health and safety or the logistics or cost of planning a large-scale event. One of the key benefits of using event software is its versatility. At Second Stage, we recognize that clients have far-ranging requirements. With a virtual event platform, it is possible to organize any event. From small group sessions and breakaway interviews or chats to conferences and trade shows with hundreds or thousands of attendees, insightful in-platform capabilities make hosting any event a breeze.
Virtual event platforms offer access to multiple spaces and the flexibility to host different types of events and offer different functions during presentations, ceremonies, meetings or educational or training sessions. Many organizations participate in a diverse range of events. Event software eliminates the stresses and strains of creating complex plans to execute each one.
Scalability is essential when running a business or managing teams of people. Businesses grow and expand, organizations host different types of events and gatherings and budgets vary. Second Stage offers flexible, end-to-end solutions for a wide range of clients, providing functions and features that cater to the needs of each customer and the attendees of their event. With a virtual event platform, you can plan everything from a workshop or training sessions to an awards show, a tradeshow, a conference or a product launch, customizing your event to celebrate and promote your brand’s identity and connect with audiences on a deeper level.
- Building stronger ties
Engagement is critical to the success of events not only because it enhances the attendee experience and encourages interaction, but also because it paves the way for forging relationships. Successful, memorable events create positive impressions and lay the foundations for strong, long-lasting relationships in the future. Whether you are interacting with customers, potential buyers or investors or employees, virtual and hybrid events offer an opportunity to get to know people better, to promote your brand, to encourage further communication and engagement and to create a community long after people have logged off or shut down. Virtual event platforms can act as a catalyst for building ties.
One of the main benefits Second Stage offers is a personalized service. Unlike some other virtual event platforms, such as Hubilo, Pathable and Socio Events, Second Stage works with you from the outset to plan and host the event you envision. Your events should be an extension of your brand and an opportunity to promote the organization and actively encourage attendee engagement. Every client has unique needs and preferences. Second Stage doesn’t deal in cookie-cutter or one-size-fits-all solutions. Clients have access to the best event software, expert advice and assistance to make designing and delivering seamless, high-quality, memorable events simple, stress-free and affordable. There are pricing options to suit various budgets and requirements from single to multiple events, and prices are clearly laid out on the website. Many other platforms, including Hubilo, Socio and Bizzabo make it more difficult to access pricing information and encourage clients to request a quote.
In addition to providing a customer-focused service with access to support features and tailored advice, Second Stage also offers wide-ranging customization options to enable clients to organize events that reflect their brand identity, the type of event and the key performance objectives.
The virtual event market is growing, with more and more organizations choosing to host virtual or hybrid conferences, shows, workshops and meetings. A virtual event platform takes the place of a meeting room, a community hall or an exhibition center, providing an accessible virtual space that caters to the requirements of a broad spectrum of clients. Second Stage is a ground-breaking event management platform, which offers a range of features and functions to enable clients to eliminate the stress of planning events, organize seamless, customized, branded events and make the most of opportunities to engage with clients, potential customers, employees and partners. If you are thinking about planning a virtual or hybrid event, don’t hesitate to contact the Second Stage team to find out more.