The Importance of Attendee Engagement

No matter what type of event you’re hosting, you never want your audience members to be bored. Whether you’re hosting a small bartending master class or a large-scale multi-day convention, you always want your attendees to be excited and ready for more. 

Interactivity is a huge part of planning any event, and digital experiences are no different. 

Nearly 50% of professional marketers agree that audience engagement is the single most important factor in creating a successful virtual event. Gone are the days when online events were a chore to attend. Sure, five years ago it was pretty much expected for the majority of virtual event attendees to be snoozing behind their computer screen, but that’s no longer the case. 

Since 2020, virtual events have become extremely common. Because of this, virtual platforms have had a lot of practice in creating the ultimate digital experience for audience members. The bar for online events has been raised significantly- and that’s a good thing.  

Now that we’ve had two years to perfect the virtual event strategy, we know that not only is attendee engagement completely possible for online events, it’s also hugely important. 

What are attendees looking for?

People are always looking for things to do in their spare time. 

If you know you want to host an event but are unsure of where to start, simply think of things you would like to do in your free time. Cooking master classes, wine tastings, and captivating lectures are all things that are possible to do in an online event. 

Think of it this way, if you would be entertained by the content of your event, it’s likely that many other people would be as well. 

However, not every event can be 100% entertainment-focused. Whether you’re hosting a continuing education event for experts in an industry or a networking event for young professionals, some events are bound to be less exciting than others. However, that doesn’t mean that your upcoming work convention can’t be both interesting and engaging. 

Check out these facts from Markletic to get some quick tips on how to increase audience engagement:

  • Interactive polls and quizzes are great tools for engagement. 81% of virtual event organizers use polling to improve attendee interaction. 
  • Utilizing video clips throughout your event can help keep your audience’s attention. Over 60% of marketers use videos as an interactive element to keep people engaged.  
  • Include multiple speakers to add variety to your event. Over 40% of event planners have found that multiple speakers keep attendees engaged for longer periods of time. 

Giving your audience members opportunities to interact with one another is also a great way to boost engagement within your platform. Lack of socialization is a huge reason that people miss in-person events so much. If you start to provide your audience with things that they loved about in-person events, they’ll be much more likely to stick around. 

Another way you can incentivize people to stay engaged on your platform is by offering special prizes or giveaways. For example, if you have a few quiz questions available in the chat every few minutes throughout a lecture, give a prize to the audience member who gets the most questions right. After all, people love getting free things. 

Why is engagement important? 

Keeping your audience members engaged is arguably the most important aspect of your event overall. Not only will this boost your event’s attendance rate, but it will also encourage people to continue attending your events in the future. The more people who are looking forward to your event, the more likely they are to market for you and encourage others to start attending your events as well. 

Think of audience engagement not as a nice bonus to your successful event but as a necessity in order to have a successful event. Get started on your engaging, unforgettable virtual event today with Jumbo