By Adam Lifshitz — Executive Director of Product, Concierge.com
The COVID-19 pandemic has led to much-needed restrictions and enforced social distancing worldwide, halting the event landscape for months to come. Whilst physical gatherings are restricted, it does not mean that you necessarily have to cancel your events outright.
Instead, you can get creative and virtualize them!
Luckily for us all, there are plenty of tools for this very purpose, each handy for different needs, so we consolidated some of them here to help you adapt to the current circumstances:
1. Performance events
Any type of event that is primarily focused on delivering a one-way performance to an audience can easily be achieved by most streaming tools:
- Instagram Live allows users to stream video to followers and engage with them in real time, and unlike a standard story, it does not have a time limit and can be saved in your handle’s stories for later viewing.
- Facebook Live will allow you to do the same as Instagram and reach your audience on their platform.
- YouTube Live is another great option if you have a YouTube channel, and you can stream live for up to 12 hours.
- Twitch is predominately a gaming streaming platform, but has a variety of unique quirks (such as live donations and a side view chat room) which is being used my musicians and other artists to hold live, social distancing concerts from their homes.
2. Talks and Panels
Events that require visibility of attendees, a multitude of speakers, sharing of presentations, and interaction between organisers and attendees (such as a Q&A):
- Zoom is perfect for presentations, talks and panels, and has added controls of how the event will be conducted, coupled with useful reporting after the fact.
- Google Hangouts is a simple solution for basic collaborations and group chats, but not as sophisticated as Zoom.
- Uber Conference is pretty easy, browser based and doesn’t require attendees to have account.
3. Networking events
Any events with the primary goal of introducing people to one another and sharing brief discussions can be facilitated through the following:
- Brella.io uses intent-based AI tools for virtual matchmaking to connect people of similar goals and interests.
- Hopin.to is set to serve a variety of event types virtually, but is still limited to early access users (it looks super promising though!)
4. Creative Experiences
For those who wish to really elevate the attendee’s experience through a virtualized environment — such as virtual reality or interactive games — you may be interested into tapping into some of these custom services:
- EventsTag are doing some great custom AR treatments to use on your social channels.
- Specialized companies - such as Virtway Events and Qbit Technologies - can help you to create 3D event experiences.
- VR-Sync provides hardware and software to help you set up VR experiences.
5. general tips
- Many of these tools can be used for events outside of their recommended category here (e.g. you can easily use Zoom for a performance event, or Facebook Live for a panel.
- For most (if not all), you can record and stream your event using a mobile device, a webcam, or a professional camera.
- Why not try to stream across multiple platforms simultaneously?
Here at Concierge.com, we want to ensure that you are able to elevate your events successfully, even through these challenging times. Beyond sharing insights and research findings, our platform and team members can continue to help you manage your (virtual) events, be it the invitation to guests, facilitating their registration, handling the ticket sales and more!
Reach out to Emily Gabriele, Director of Business Development and Client Solutions, if you wish to collaborate on virtualizing your event and all that goes with it — firstname.lastname@example.org.