Wellness in events has taken the industry by storm in recent years with the focus for event planners shifting to providing not only valuable experiences but enjoyable ones that contribute to positive wellbeing for delegates – and virtual events should be no different.
When it comes to live events, incorporating wellness elements is fairly straight-forward. You can provide nutritional catering to increase productivity, choose a venue with ample natural daylight and encourage your delegates to use outside space, but what about when they’re not physically with you? We’ve shared our tips on how to incorporate wellness into your next virtual event.
We all know the importance of an engaging and interactive conference program. You may feel that because your delegates are in their homes or offices that they’re more likely to feel comfortable and relaxed, but this is absolutely not a given. OK, they’re avoiding their commute to your event but they’re still humans with short attention spans. Think carefully about your schedule and incorporate time specifically for breaks throughout the day.
Don’t jam pack your schedule and cram content in. Split your event into ‘bitesize’, logical segments that can be easily processed and provide regular opportunities for questions to ensure that everyone can keep up with you and take in what they’re hearing and seeing.
Again, just because your guests are in a familiar environment, it doesn’t mean you can forget about their wellbeing whilst in attendance at your event. Of course there is less you can control – for example the food they use to fuel their day, the lighting or whether they’ve got enough natural daylight – but you can provide opportunities. As they say, you can lead the horse…
Provide opportunities for your delegates to get moving, whether this be simple encouragement during breaks or within the event content itself – can you include activities or exercises that involve movement?
One of the biggest strengths of live events is the networking opportunities that it provides with like-minded people. Just because people are tuning into your event remotely it doesn’t mean they don’t need this interaction, and it’s important to still provide opportunities for this.
Try to provide your guests with an environment to share, discuss and build relationships – this might be with a Q&A session, team building activities or discussion points throughout. If you’re hosting a large-scale conference with different spaces for different seminars or topics, include some breakout spaces, too. Include elevenses. Put delegates into groups and ask them to discuss important topics that you’re covering in your content.
You might think that because your delegates aren’t physically with you, you can’t provide them with audio-visual experiences that enhance your event. It’s easy to think of hundreds of different people sitting at their laptops at home or at their desks, quietly, on their own. But it doesn’t have to feel like this.
You can still provide collective audio-visual experiences – try playing music during brainstorming lessons to boost creativity or give morale a nudge in the right direction with video and imagery to enhance your content.
Just because your event is virtual, it doesn’t mean you can have sponsors. If you choose to have event sponsors, consider choosing one that will provide a wellness element and give your guests a segment on wellness in your industry or discount or access to gyms, yoga classes, nutritional meal plans or a meditation app via text or email.
Take a look at our blog for more event management tips or get in touch to speak to a member of our experienced event planners.