Virtual events through the eyes of an intern
Wondering how events are held during the pandemic? Virtually and 6 feet apart!
After one week as a social media and PR Flintern, I was given the opportunity to experience the Ladyboss Midwest summit. The event was exciting, and I learned about holding a virtual event while engaging with guest speakers in person–with a mask on, of course. 😉
Throughout the day I was impressed, not only by the speakers but by the production of the event.
Streaming the event took a lot of planning that I never would have realized as an attendee behind the screen. Event planning best practices still hold true for virtual events, like booking the right venue, designing a set, confirming speakers, writing scripts and promoting it.
What I quickly realized: A dedicated staff is essential for production to run smoothly. From production staff adjusting the set in between panels to ensure an optimal viewing experience to photographers editing photos on site and live social media to engage with viewers throughout the event, the summit required a nimble team.
MVP of the day? The technology specialists. The production team was updating the script to the teleprompter, monitoring the livestream, placing the cameras accordingly and prepping speakers with microphones and placements on set. On top of all that, the hosts and tech team had to try to keep everyone on site quiet–no simple task in a room of bright minds. 😆
What’s extra important with a virtual event? Being social. Throughout the day, viewers could submit questions or comments via the livestream or tweet using a designated hashtag, #LadybossMidwest. Prior to the event, Ladyboss sent links to small groups for break-out sessions to mimic in-person networking so participants could meet. Resharing and “liking” social media posts also helped virtual viewers feel like they were part of a traditional event.
As an intern I anticipated learning a lot at my first event but didn’t expect it would be virtual. The Ladyboss summit taught me that hard work and passion for your business matter most—circumstances will only change the style of the presentation. I was fortunate enough to gain experience through this virtual event during a global pandemic.