How to Host A Virtual Event For Your Community

The 6-step guide to success

Even with the stress of the pandemic slowing down, virtual events are still becoming more popular than ever before. Over the course of the global pandemic, hosting virtual events, panels, and meetings online started to become the norm – now, it’s almost the preferred way of doing things. 

If you’ve yet to hold an event virtually for your community because you’re looking for the best platform to help support you through it, is the place to start.

You’ve done the work already to build up a community surrounding your brand or business. Now, it’s time to host a successful online event for your supporters that people won’t stop talking about, and one that’s going to drive engagement with your brand like never before.

But first, let’s dive into what the actual benefits are of holding a virtual event over doing one in-person.

The benefits of hosting online events

While in-person events are still very effective and can definitely help you build stronger, face-to-face connections with your community – there’s actually great advantages to holding virtual events instead. For example, virtual events are:  

1. Accessible to global members

With online events, the opportunities for who can join are only limited by a wifi connection and timezone. This means that you can have way more attendees, a way more diverse group of attendees, and connect with people you never would be able to in a live event. The number of attendees and revenue generated has the chance of being much higher than if you were to hold a small, in-person meet-up in your city. 

2. More cost effective

When you don’t have to pay for food, events venues, and transportation for speakers or other guests – the costs to hold your event become minimal. This is another huge advantage of growing online communities and holding virtual events. When you hold your events online, oftentimes the largest cost is for the speakers you bring in, physical goods that you might mail to your attendees, or the platform that you’re hosting your event on (as it might require coding, or subscription fees depending on the platform).

However, if you’re trying to keep the cost ultra-low, you can always opt for free or trial versions of Zoom or Microsoft Teams depending on the event and how many people there are in your community. This is something that you can’t get away with if you’re holding an in-person event unless you have connections that can land you a free space. 

3. Easier to plan and organize 

While cost effectiveness is one perk of holding a virtual event over an in-person one, the fact that it’s easier to plan and organize is also a great advantage. Booking times that work for speakers to come into a city, organizing food, supplies, venues and more can be very time-consuming, stressful and often hard if you’re a one-person-show. Virtual events mean that people with low-budgets or small teams can still host an event to connect with their community.

4. Only limited by your creativity

With the way that technology has been advancing over the past decade alone, we’ve been able to build incredible experiences and tools for the modern creator – including things like NFTs, VR, AR, and the Metaverse. With all of this available to you, the possibilities for how you could host your event are endless.

You could host your event in the year 2550, on Mars, or at the center of the planet if you really wanted to. While this more resource-intensive, it just proves that with virtual events – the limits are quite literally non-existent.

How to host a successful virtual event for your community

Alright, now that we know the benefits of virtual gatherings and events, how do you actually hold one that’s going to be a success amongst your attendees, and spread the word of mouth about your brand?

Here are 6 steps to get you started: 

1. Figure out your main goals

If you want to host a successful event, you want to make sure that you have a solid goal, and that the things you’ve planned are going to drive your message home. This part is worth noting whether it’s an in-person or a virtual event – but it’s absolutely essential. In order to do this, it’s time to not only think about what you would find entertaining, but to really put yourself in your audience’s shoes.

If you were in their place, what experience would resonate most with them? What questions do they have that they need answers to? What do they need? Try asking them directly and see what they say. Jot down your main goals and some characteristics about your target member. Make sure you are very clear on this before deciding what activities, speakers or format would be the most suitable for your event. 

Once you’ve defined the purpose, now you want to create your checklists, establish your final date and figure out what sort of team members or support might you need to make the event happen.

2. Choose your platform and host carefully

Depending on your audience and the type of event you’re going to hold, as well as the goals you’re looking to achieve, you then want to pick a platform and host to run your meeting. 

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    As the famous media theorist, Marshall McLuhan said: the medium is the message. This means that if you really want to drive your message home, you have to do it through finding the proper medium to do it.

    So, for example, if you’re hosting an event for seniors who have barely even gotten accustomed to Zoom yet – doing this event in the Metaverse might not be the best choice. It’s best to really think about your audience, and figure out what medium will best transfer your message to them. Along the same lines, you want to make sure that your host really represents your brand properly if you’re not going to be hosting the event yourself.

    When it comes to platforms, there are tons out there that you can use to host your event. You can choose to hold it in your own Metaverse, on Zoom, Discord – whatever you want. However, it’s also a personal preference. Do your research to figure out which is right for you, and which one allows you the controls that you need to successfully host your event.

    3. Create an element of engagement 

    Engagement in learning environments has been proven to help in achievement, and lower drop-out rates. Using this information, it’s safe to say that people’s motivation and connection to your brand is going to be even stronger if there’s an element of engagement when learning from your event.

    Using an element of engagement is also going to help you create an event that will be hard for guests to forget, because they weren’t just passively listening to you – but actively contributing to the experience. Some examples could be Kahoot games, Q&As, breakout-room activities or hosting your event in a Metaverse space.

    4. Craft your marketing plan

    Once you’ve crafted your event plan and everything is more or less organized and ready to go – now you want to get the word out there. 

    In other words, it’s time to create a marketing plan. 

    If you’re hosting an event of any kind, it’s crucial to be marketing it within your community. It’s worth noting that many of your community members could also be part of other communities. So it’s time to make yourself stand out. Make sure you talk about the event coming up, and consider adding in some sort of perk or free printable that could be an enticing reason for your members to sign up. 

    Make sure you take to your communities social media account, post it within your group forum, and make it known. If it’s an extra purchase within the community – make sure you align with the cost that your audience would expect from you. What’s better, give them a discount and make sure you post about it and make sure your audience is exposed to it at least 10 times. After all, most people have to see an ad a minimum of 7 times before they actually are comfortable with considering a purchase. 

    5. Build out a project plan for your team 

    The closer the event gets, the more stressful things are going to become. If you are holding a large event and you have multiple team members involved, plan out milestones and small deadlines leading up to the final event so you don’t get overwhelmed.

    Pick a day and time that works for everyone on your team where you can schedule regular catch-up meetings. Make sure to have agendas and milestones clearly laid out so everybody has a clear direction, and your meetings don’t go off the rails. Having an organized database, and well-structured internal team is just as important as creating an optimal experience for your attendees. This way, you can make sure everything stays on track for the big day.

    6. Call-to-action after the event

    The most important part of an event: the follow-up. 

    Once you wrap up your successful virtual event and everyone is raving about it – make sure you follow up with an email. There should always be a call-to-action (CTA), an actionable step that your attendees can take to keep engaging with you even when the event comes to a close. 

    This could simply be a CTA for people to share their experiences online, engage with your brand in a new way, a discount to redeem for a new product –  whatever suits your brand best. This way, the hours of effort you spent on this one event can travel as far as possible.

    Build your community and host events with

    The most important part of hosting an event is building a strong community first. 

    Being able to manage it effectively, market your events and provide enough value within your community to keep your members coming back is essential for optimal turnout – and our expert team of community-builders are going to help you get started. Start now at

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