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Essentials to Host a Successful Online Summit With Your Peers and Employees

An online or virtual summit is an event, typically live-streamed or on-demand, where one or more people discuss a specific topic. Attending this event is a great way to network with peers and build relationships in your industry.

Hosting a virtual summit requires the following:

  • Identifying a theme,
  • Creating content for the event,
  • Attracting participants,
  • Setting goals and objectives for the event,
  • selecting a platform to host it,
  • And preparing for technical hiccups.

Learn how to better prepare for, execute, and promote your next online summit  with these tips.

Planning

How many people will be at your online summit? It is one of your first considerations when planning a virtual summit. Typically, you will have anywhere from five-to-seven presenters per session.

The purpose of using seven is to create smaller discussion groups for more intimate discussions. Each presenter must have between four and five minutes for their presentation. Otherwise, everyone on stage will go over their allotted time, and some may not get enough time to share their thoughts and insights. When scheduling sessions, try not to have more than three sessions in one day.

Setting Goals

You want to make sure you are setting realistic, attainable goals that make sense for your situation. When you set these goals, it will also be easier for you to know how many attendees you will need for your online summit to be successful.

You can determine this number by considering how long your event is, how many topics or speakers you plan on having, and whether it will be self-hosted or run through an event management platform.

By defining what you want, you can better plan how many participants should be there and which people should be invited. When setting goals for an online summit, think about:

Goal 1: How many people do you want to invite?

Goal 2: Which topics are you looking forward to discussing?

Solicit Speakers

Many speakers can be found online with just a quick Google search. You can also ask your fellow peers or employees if they would like to speak at your summit. You may also consider contacting speakers you have seen at other events. Finally, if you have contacts with high-profile organizations, make sure that your online summit is on their radar too. Make sure to follow the below steps:

  • Reach out to speakers
  • Schedule meeting or phone call
  • Explain what you are looking for in terms of length and subject matter

 Select Technology Platform

Choose an online meeting platform compatible with your company or industry. The type of technology platform you choose can affect how participants perceive your summit. You can use various platforms to achieve this. However, it’s always a good idea to research which one may work best for your needs.

Promote the Event

You’re unlikely to have many attendees if you don’t adequately promote your summit. It is where outreach to both potential speakers and attendees comes in. Get on social media, ask for speaking submissions, work on your speaker questionnaire, contact industry leaders, send invitations by email or mail, create an invitation video, and so on. 

Ensure that attendees know what they’re getting themselves into before they purchase tickets or sign up. Make sure to add all details, such as agenda, speaker bios, and FAQs, to create an attractive promotional page that gives attendees all their information upfront.

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