Virtual events are replacing in-person events in many industries. From virtual happy hours with employees to full industry conferences, online events allow businesses to reach people around the world. If you’re looking to host more events for your small business, here are some ways to leverage virtual venues.
What is a Virtual Event?
A virtual event is a gathering that takes place in an online setting. They may include webinars, video and audio sessions, and interactions between attendees in a live chat or audio format. Some virtual events take place in one session, while others offer multiple days full of content and online engagement. And these can be events to attract new customers, educate, or just have fun.
Virtual Social Event Ideas
The perfect virtual event idea can help you boost engagement with remote team members, customers, and industry leaders. These social gatherings should promote interaction and offer a fun virtual experience for everyone to enjoy.
If you want to hold an interesting virtual event for your next occasion, here are some event planning tips that are sure to wow your virtual audience.
1. Virtual Cocktail Class
A cocktail class would include an instructor teaching mixology to your team. This would be especially beneficial for bartenders or event businesses. But it could also be a fun team building activity for office workers.
2. Speed Networking
Speed networking allows attendees to make individual connections quickly. This can benefit professional organizations, chambers of commerce, or businesses with large teams that don’t all know one another.
3. Virtual Live Concert
A virtual concert would include a video performance from a musical artist. And your team may bond over the experience or even chat via text during the event.
4. Team Movie Night
Bonding over movies can bring a team together. You can all start at the same time and then video chat or text throughout.
5. Virtual Scavenger Hunt
Scavenger hunts force teams to work together. Create objectives and break people into groups to encourage collaboration.
6. Virtual Coffee Breaks
Coffee breaks allow team members to chat about ideas or just get to know one another. Make it a casual video chat where everyone brings their own coffee.
7. Virtual Happy Hour
Happy hours are similarly casual. Everyone can make their own drinks at home and get to know each other in a casual setting.
8. Bring Your Pet to Work Day
Some offices let employees bring pets to work. If your team is remote, encourage everyone to have their animals present during a meeting or coworking session to add some fun.
9. Online Game Show
Draw inspiration from your favorite game show like Jeopardy or Family Feud to encourage your team to work together and have fun while learning new facts.
10. Virtual Tour
You can purchase video tours from tourism companies that visit museums or other attractions. Then everyone can chat about their experiences.
11. Online Paint-and-Sip
Paint and wine nights are common bonding experiences. Host one on a video chat platform to encourage creativity while also having fun.
12. Online Dinner Party
If you have a small team, have everyone make a dish and enjoy conversation while video chatting.
13. Virtual Prom
For larger teams or industry organizations, prom may be a fun way to bring people together. Everyone should dress up and take photos. And you can share music and activities online.
14. Team Lunch
For a more laid back experience, host lunch on a video chat platform, where you can also chat about ideas without a strict meeting format.
15. Virtual Birthday Parties
Lots of in-person teams have birthday parties in the office. So if you have a remote team, host one on a video platform to recognize each team member.
Fun Virtual Event Ideas
A successful virtual world event doesn’t need to have a specific business objective. Your next online event may just be something fun for your team to enjoy in a virtual setting. Here are a few ideas to consider.
16. Trivia Night
Have employees compete against others in a public contest or host an internal trivia night where departments compete against one another.
17. Virtual Giveaway
A virtual giveaway can reward your employees or loyal customers. Invite people to attend and give each one an entry into your contest.
18. Mindfulness Activities
Mindfulness activities like meditation and yoga can help your team control their thoughts. Offer it as an option each month to improve morale.
19 Social Media Challenge
Use social media to engage customers or employees in an ongoing contest. For example, a local gym may create a weight-lifting challenge that people can participate in with a hashtag.
20. Virtual Games
Game night on a video chat platform can work as a team building activity. Or you can host ongoing gaming challenges where people connect on social media.
21. Online Fitness Classes
Video fitness classes encourage wellness. Invite a guest instructor or have your team sign up as virtual attendees for a public class. Alternatively, personal trainers or gyms may offer these for customers.
22. Virtual Escape Room
Escape rooms have become fun outings and team building exercises. Find a virtual room to encourage remote workers to collaborate and find creative solutions.
23. Online Murder Mystery
Murder mysteries also encourage problem solving. Create your own or find an online event company that hosts one to invite your employees.
24. Online Craft Tutorial
Craft nights can encourage creativity in teams. Or if your business offers craft supplies or tutorials, an online event can encourage engagement among customers.
25. Video Game Challenge
Professional gamers and gaming companies may benefit from challenges that everyone can participate in. Post on Twitch and encourage others to share their own content online.
Business Event Ideas that Work Well in a Virtual Space
Some online events simply take place in a video chat or on social media. But larger virtual corporate events are often held in dedicated online venue spaces that can accommodate more guests and features. Here are some types of virtual events that work well in these spaces.
26. Awards Ceremony
Recognize your employees for their unique contributions by offering each one a personalized award.
27. Virtual Gala Hosting
You can sell tickets to top clients or invite your team to this formal event. Then provide exclusive entertainment, raffles, and other activities.
28. Virtual Conference
Businesses can sponsor these educational events or professional orgs can offer them to members. Just choose the right video conferencing platform software and offer breakout sessions so guests can personalize their experience.
29. Virtual Summit
Summits are like conferences. But they feature multiple hosts sharing different information. This can help thought leaders increase their reach.
30. Virtual Meeting
A virtual meeting can help your team share ideas. You can even have pre event chat rooms so departments can collaborate.
31. Virtual Team Building
Online team building events can help remote teams get to know one another and collaborate.
32. Virtual Exhibition Hall
An exhibition hall helps different businesses within an industry share products or services with interested buyers or investors.
33. 360 Degree Tour
Share a tour of your office or another venue from every direction to give customers a behind-the-scenes look.
34. Virtual Guest Speaker
Bring in guest speakers to add value to various events. Or host a dedicated lecture to educate your team or provide value to customers.
35. Virtual Online Course
Online courses can teach employees about a variety of subjects. Or you can sell courses to customers.
36. Video Training Sessions
Training sessions offer a more hands-on experience.
37. Online Brainstorming Sessions
Your team can share ideas using event apps or video platforms.
38. Virtual Fundraisers
Fundraisers are useful for nonprofits or businesses that raise money for causes. Offer raffles and contests to add value for attendees.
39. Online Coworking
Coworking can be useful for remote teams that miss the comradery of the office.
40. Activity Livestreams
Livestreaming can provide an immersive experience in real time, like a day in the life at your office. This may boost engagement with remote employees or customers.
How do you make a virtual social event fun?
You may have to work a bit harder to get people engaged in events they can’t attend in person. But these techniques may help:
- Find an event theme that your team can participate in
- Offer contests and games
- Surprise attendees with unique guests and activities
- Send sponsored virtual event bags bags or food to attendees
- Include breakout sessions so attendees can choose their own activities
Original published in smallbiztrends.com by Annie Pilon on November 2, 2021 and can be seen at https://smallbiztrends.com/2021/11/virtual-event-ideas.html.