What to look for when choosing a virtual events agency
We know that choosing a virtual events agency to collaborate with can be challenging, so here are some helpful tips to ensure your partnership is successful (and rewarding!)
Since the move of events and meetings from live to online last March, a wealth of information and guidance has become available on the various aspects of running a successful virtual event. A quick Google search reveals a long list of (mostly sponsored) results to help organisations decide on a suitable hosting platform for their event. Yes, choosing the right technology is essential, but it’s only a fraction of the story.
While businesses have had to adapt to a new world order over the past 12 months, there is still a lack of clarity on how to elevate a virtual event from “meeting requirements” to “smashing expectations”. Recent research shows that 63% of organisations have yet to partner with a production services company to deliver their virtual events, yet the opportunity for the right agency to provide real value here is huge.
- Credibility. While some of the planning and production processes required for virtual are the same as live, there is a great deal of specialisation and knowledge in virtual that can only be gained from years of practical experience. An agency partner with pre-COVID virtual credentials will ensure it feels like the pivot from live to virtual is driven less by circumstance and more by genuine commercial objectives.
- Creativity. We all know that creativity is essential in business because it is a differentiator. You only need to look at successful brands to understand the role of creativity in innovation, engagement, and communication. The same applies to virtual events, but while most organisations are likely to lack the resource in-house to stand out from the crowd, the right agency partner will have both the expertise and the desire to do it for you.
- Technology. A platform-agnostic partner with experience and knowledge of all the options available will provide an unbiased, bespoke solution to meet the exact needs of an event. Just as important, they will stay ahead of the game on industry innovations in virtual production – so if you’re looking to bring your message to life with mixed reality, a broadcast quality show or the latest animation techniques, all options will be covered.
- Minimising risk. There are countless additional IT and technical elements to take into consideration in virtual, so a full risk analysis for each event is crucial. Having a team dedicated to this process allows the event management team to rest easy and focus on the important aspects of running a successful show: content, engagement and results.
- Global reach. Now that events can take place in one time zone but be delivered and managed in an entirely different one, you need a 24-hour agency that is fully set up for global delivery. It’s not enough to be ‘always on’ – the entire infrastructure of the virtual event needs to be geared up and optimised for a global audience.
- Measurement. Meaningful measurement has never been more important to help understand the needs of an online audience and improve engagement and impact. Any virtual event agency worth its salt will include measurement and ROI in its processes to ensure the data harnessed offers real marketing intelligence and actionable insight for the business.
Choosing the right agency partner on any project is never an exact science and we know better than anyone that a lot of it comes down to chemistry. But given the rollercoaster of the past year and the continued uncertainty of the events landscape in 2021 and beyond, it is more important than ever to partner with an agency who has both the grounding and the agility to go on the journey with you.