From town halls to sales kickoffs, product launches to Q&A sessions, internal events are a core part of business life. That doesn't need to stop when we're all working from home. You can still run engaging and interactive events that reach everyone, virtually. This guide will walk you through best practices for creating an engaging community around internal events in Workplace.
And make sure that you read on to find the Workplace team's own learnings from the entirely virtual Transform 2020 events.
How to do it in Workplace
1. Create an event logistics group
Create an event logistics group to centralise all of your event management communications. If you're working with external event partners, use a multi-company group. Make the group secret to ensure that only the right people can be added to the group and see posts.
You'll be using posts and chat to keep everyone up to date and to share documents, videos, images and more. For more information on managing teams and projects in Workplace, read our guide.Create an event FYI group
2. Create an event FYI group
Create an open Workplace group to keep attendees up to date and engaged with all of the latest news and information about the upcoming event. Make the group open so that anyone can see posts and join.Share the logistics
Share a post in the group with all the details of the event, including the agenda and clear instructions on how employees can access the live stream. Pin the post so it can easily be referenced at the top of the group.Build up excitement
Engage attendees in the lead up to the event with polls, teaser videos, event handouts and more. Encourage attendees to introduce themselves if they haven't met and connect over shared interests.Promote the event in other channels
3. Promote the event in other channels
Make sure you're using all of your company's communication channels to get the word out about the event. Here are just a few examples:
- Send out email communications from an executive, inviting people to the event and sharing instructions on how to tune in.
- Consider sending another email the day before or an hour before the broadcast to remind people to join.
- Include a sneak peek of the event in your internal newsletter.
- Add a promotional banner to your intranet's home page.
4. Broadcast the event by going live
Use Workplace's Live Producer to stream high-quality video straight from your computer or professional camera. View the Live Producerinteractive demos to get a full walkthrough of setting up a Live video broadcast.
The Live Town Hall guide has a full listing of helpful tips and technical setup instructions. Here are just a few:
- Turn on auto-generated captions
- Make sure that your network connection is strong before the event
- Use Do Not Disturb to disable all Workplace notifications so you're not interrupted during the broadcast
- Restart your computer 30 minutes before you're due to go live to prevent your device from crashing or forcing an update
- Face a window to get a good source of natural light
- Use headphones or a wired microphone to make sure that viewers can hear you clearly
Want to share this video in a Workplace post? Download it here.Engage viewers during your broadcast
5. Engage viewers during your broadcast
Use Live Producer's polls and Q&A functionality to engage employees throughout your broadcast. Speakers can also ask the audience questions directly, and encourage them to respond in the comments.
It's also a good idea to have community managers driving conversations within Workplace comments. They can point people to resources, help answer questions and encourage conversation.Keep up engagement after the event is over
6. Keep up engagement after the event is over
Here are a few ways that you can follow up after the event to continue engaging employees and to gain valuable feedback:
- If you used Live Producer's Q&A feature, go back after the event is over and try to answer all or most unanswered questions.
- Send a short 5-question survey in Workplace to learn about what worked during the event and what didn't.
- Edit the text in your live video post to include timestamps to make it easy for viewers to access key topics.
Events in action: Workplace Transform 2020
Transform is Workplace's annual summit that brings together Workplace customers to share best practices, discover insights and learn more about the future of the platform.
Transform events are typically held in person in multiple locations across the globe. But this year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Our EMEA and North America Transform events were held entirely virtually and live-streamed into a multi-company group to an audience of several thousand participants.
Here are a few tips and learnings from the Transform team to help you make your next virtual event a success:
- Use a combination of live and pre-produced content. Pre-produced videos will be quick and engaging while live speakers can connect more authentically to the audience.
- Use a high-energy, fun host to weave the segments of your event together and engage with the audience. The host can also provide input on practical details as you progress. Running internal auditions is a fun way to select the right person.
- Don't try to replicate what would happen in person – attention spans are different, and so are people's expectations. Think about how you can create small chunks of content or shorten key messages to keep audience attention. Structure your content so that you prioritise the most important content first.
- Prepare for the unexpected. Conduct rehearsals and if possible, record them. On the day of your event, you'll have a backup if you encounter technical difficulties. Rehearse your backup plans to ensure there are no surprises.
- Just because your event has concluded, doesn't mean the community and networking have to end. Find ways to continue the conversation into the future.
- Streamline event management in an event logistics group.
- Support interaction between participants before, during and after the event.
- Interact with viewers during your broadcast and continue to engage attendees even after the event is over.
- Get valuable feedback after the event with Surveys.