When you develop a virtual conference or event, you always have high hopes that your keynote speakers and panelists will excite your audience members and leave them with wonderful insights and ideas. You also want your speakers to attract a high number of attendees to their sessions, keep them engaged throughout the presentation and get rave reviews in satisfaction surveys. But, what percentage of your speakers are actually living up to those high expectations? If you’re like most event planners, you have had more than a few underperforming speakers, as well as a few no-shows. This guide will help you make your next event speaker a star.
Resources for Community & Virtual Event Success
Recent surveys of meeting and event planners consistently show that about 80 percent will hold their next in-person event in the second half of this year, with a recent uptick in event planning in the U.S. due mostly to progress in COVID-19 immunizations. While this is great news for associations that rely on event marketing for revenue generation and member engagement, it comes with many risks as well as opportunities.
BBI International is the world leader in biofuels/biomass publishing and events, including the Fuel Ethanol Workshop (FEW), which is the largest gathering of ethanol producers in the world every year. It is a trade show, as well as an education and networking event for production/operations managers, leadership/financial professionals, product management and infrastructure/market development leaders. It is also an important annual event for sponsors/exhibitors to engage with current and prospective customers.
For every organization that suddenly had to convert all of their events to virtual due to the pandemic, it was a significant learning experience. But many organizations have been conducting virtual conferences and international meetings for years and have learned a few tricks along the way. What was once a series of speakers lecturing the audience, one after the other, has now evolved to a multimedia, engaging experience that can be an inviting and fulfilling alternative to an in-person event.