The virtual format is ideal for the wide dissemination of published papers. Given the lower investment associated with attending a virtual conference, we typically see a growth in registration ranging from 30 to 200%,which provides an opportunity to get more people engaged with the content.
We have found that the best way to encourage engagement is to offer a range of formats and times for it. Here are a few ways to accomplish this.
Pre-recording sessions serve a dual purpose; it makes it easy for speakers to record high-quality video and gives attendees an opportunity to attend talks at a relaxed pace with a few sessions a day over more days. The latter is a benefit afforded by the virtual format which addresses the potential inability of participants to attend an all-day multi-day conference. Event analysis shows that on average talk attendance at pre-recorded sessions is 25% higher than non pre-recorded sessions.
Spatial chat platforms
Placement of all of the conference content in a spatial chat platform allows for self-directed small group conversation, a key to an interactive and meaningful conference. Gather is one of the spatial chat platforms we use, it allows participants to navigate a conference venue using avatars. By holding all planned conference activities in a cohesive virtual space, we help guarantee high attendance, leading to more organic interactions between attendees as well as speakers
Coffee Breaks and Social Lounges
Frequent breaks and social activities during virtual conferences mean much higher participation from senior community members. As such, it is possible to plan a large number of social events encouraging junior/senior interactions such as lunches, hosted conversations, and speed networking. Talks should not last multiple hours, but be no more than 90 minutes, coffee breaks work well and have high engagement when planned around “conversation carpets” with topics related to the talks for the attendees to gather around.