Expert Tips Planning a Virtual Event on a Tight Timeline

Claire Hoffman at BizBash lays out tips on how to execute a virtual event on a tight deadline.

“Let’s face it: We don’t always have the time—or the budget—to build the virtual event of our dreams. But that’s no reason to throw in the towel! Here, event pros across the country discuss how to plan an effective virtual event on a tight time frame, sharing what’s most important (and what can be sacrificed), how to be honest with clients, turnkey technology that can help, and much more.”

Some items she goes into are…

  • Identify your event’s main goal. 
  • Find elements to cut.
  • Keep the tech simple.

Get all of the facts at BizBash.com.

Is this the future of Hybrid Meetings?

I love everything about this “technically comfortable” space. The audience and virtual attendees get to experience the event in a more relaxed, yet formal setting. This is how I envision post-COVID Hybrid Events going forward. Minus the masked staff, of course.

From MeetingNet.com.

“[Marriott Hotels] used an in-person format that it thinks can be a model for other hybrid meetings. The event showcased Marriott’s revised approaches to meeting-room and prefunction-area setups that maintain social distancing, products and staff behaviors that maintain cleanliness of surfaces throughout the spaces, and virtual-event technologies that bring in remote participants.”

Entire Productions believes the safety-conscious event model is here to stay

BizBash.com describes how Entire Productions provides 5 ways to enhance your hybrid event.

“With large events like The Emmys and VMAs going hybrid, Entire Productions believes that this safety-conscious event model is here to stay. Whether the event is a mini music festival or a multi-day conference with entertaining segments, knowing how to better combine in-person and virtual elements for future events is essential to boost attendee engagement and overall satisfaction.”

The 5 topics they discuss are…

  • Engagement Tools
  • Thoughtful Giveaways
  • Curated Entertainment & Unique Experiences
  • The Right Audiovisual Equipment
  • The Right Event Management Company

You can the details about these topics at BizBash.com

Improve Your Nonverbal Communication

The Convene staff know a thing to two about virtual meetings, so they put together a primer on how to present yourself nonverbally. Here’s a snippet.


To help improve your nonverbal skills, we’ve assembled ten useful tips to try out during your next virtual meeting. From controlling your facial expressions to managing your body language, there’s a lot to consider when it comes to nonverbal communication. But with these easy tips you’ll be sure to impress your next audience and keep them engaged the whole way through.

Let’s dive in: 

1. Maintain Eye Contact 

Consistent, engaged eye contact is essential to communicating. And though it may be easy to slip away while speaking through a screen, it’s important to stay zeroed in on your audience. To give the illusion of true eye contact, be sure to look directly into the webcam. And if you want to help your expression appear more natural, you could even try taping an image you love of a family member to the wall behind it. 

2. Perfect Your Posture 

It may seem like an insignificant detail, but slouching on screen can give your audience the impression that you’re disinterested. Select a chair that helps you sit confidently upright, keep your shoulders square, and try to use your hands some when speaking. Leaning into the camera slightly will also mimic active listening onscreen. 

3. Smile & Nod Along 

Just as you would in person, smiling and nodding along while others are speaking will let them know that you’re listening and engaged. Tilting your head as you do so will also affirm your interest, as this gesture is a universal way to “lend your ear.” 


For the other 7 tips you’ll have to visit convene.com. Fortunately, we know “a guy”, so you can go directly to the article using the button below.

Want to Lead an Effective Virtual Brainstorm?

Stanford GSB online learning manager Delia Davila and associate director of executive online courses Megan Pearse shared tips and insights to make your next virtual brainstorming session more effective.

A few questions they answer are:

  • What are the advantages of virtual brainstorming?
  • How do you overcome some of the challenges of virtual brainstorming?
  • What’s the best way to start a virtual brainstorm off on the right note?

And a couple more. Head over to Zoom | Blog to gather insight. It’s a good read for coaches and facilitators.

Meet the Press – NBC debuts election headquarters

This is a beautiful set. The amount of work involved to move one big show out and another big show in must have been Herculean.

The network is using Studio 1A, normally home to “Today” as is election headquarters — similar to how it was used for convention and debate coverage earlier in the election cycle.

Them there’s AV.

Like for those broadcasts, the main anchor desk is set up against the 40 foot curved LED video wall installed in 2018 as part of a studio refresh that eliminated the one on one interview and sofa areas that had long been part of the set.

You can get the rest of the nerdy bits at NewscastStudio.com.

A 120″ 8K LCD from Sharp

Now that’s a lot of display.

From Rave Pubs.

Sharp Imaging and Information Company of America just introduced today the new 120” class (diagonal) 8M-B120C 8K Ultra-HD Professional LCD display. The 8K monitor packs in 33 million pixels, four times more than a 4K panel, and is aimed at applications like corporate lobbies, showrooms, museums and video production.

Rave has all of the techie details. Click below for more info.

On The Rise: Zero-Touch Technology

This is going to be a leading A/V trend in commercial lobbies, amusement parks, and museums. After that, In-Room Hospitality then Luxury Residential.

This nascent trend will quicken with staggering scale and speed. We’ll see a rapid shift away from touchscreen kiosks. Voice technology will move out of the home and into the office. Personal mobile devices will connect to and control buildings. Environments will be seamlessly integrated with an array of sensors to detect and respond to human behavior automatically.

  • Sensor integration
  • Voice command
  • Gesture detection and facial recognition
  • Haptics
  • Next-generation vending machines and kiosks
  • Mobile device integration
  • Contactless payments

The virtual wine and dine – for clients

Here are four other lessons from Inc. 5000 companies that are wining and dining clients virtually.

1. Send care packages in advance. 

Before the age of Covid-19, client meetings were generally casual affairs for Stefanie Hill, who runs the San Francisco office of IT management consulting firm Pariveda, an 11-time Inc. 5000 company (No. 4,791 in 2019). “As in ‘Let’s go grab a cup of coffee,’ or ‘Let’s go grab a glass of wine,'” she says.

Hill is still picking up the wine tab–only now she plans ahead. For two recent client meetings, she headed to the post office in advance and shipped wine to the clients’ homes, along with wine glasses etched with the Pariveda logo. This touch createda way for her to match what they were drinking and leave them with a Covid-era keepsake. For a recent morning discussion with counterparts from Microsoft and Amazon Web Services, she mailed fresh coffee from Brandywine Coffee Roasters and Pariveda mugs. “We actually found a blend called ‘Social Distancing,'” Hill says.

2. Add the element of surprise. 

For many remote workers, the Zoom window has become a constant presence on computer desktops. To liven up video calls, Kristen Liggett, group account director at Agency EA, an experiential marketing agency based in Chicago (No. 2,127 on the Inc. 5000), is telling clients to expect a delivery one hour before their meeting–but won’t say what. En route: a bottle of rosé and assorted cheeses and snacks from a nearby gourmet market.

 “Who doesn’t love a surprise?” says Liggett. “And it adds a layer of fun rather than expectation,” she adds.

Zoom Fatigue Is Real

“Zoom fatigue”—that tired feeling you get after a long video meeting—has become a feeling many office workers are intimately familiar with. For many of us, these meetings aren’t anything new; we’re used to being in lots of meetings throughout the day. But once these meetings became virtual, they seem to be far more mentally and emotionally taxing. 

What gives? Experts say that it’s simply harder to process verbal information over a video call than in person, where we can benefit from non-verbal communication cues. It could also come from the fact that we feel pressured to more actively show our engagement.

“At first, I thought Zoom meetings were better than in-person meetings. I even thought they were an introvert’s dream!” says Sunshine Watson, donor database manager at Valleywise Health Foundation. “Then I noticed that I was exhausted afterward, and dread days that involve them.”