From handshake to mouse click: Face-to-face events on a digital journey

Townhall meetings, workshops, onboard events, sales meetings - if suddenly all these face-to-face formats are no longer possible, what then? More and more companies are - almost inevitably - turning to digital communication solutions, feeling their way forward and discovering new approaches to digital dialogue. Webinars, 360° tours, VR or AR applications - these are the buzzwords that describe technology or software, but say little about what can be done with them, can even be done better, but should also better not be done when it comes to online formats.

Potential for new approaches

Form follows function. What does this mean in connection with the transfer of face-to-face events to digital event formats?

The question that should be asked at the outset is, for example, the function and goal of the event: why does it take place, what are the topics, who takes part, where is dialogue desired and even required, how is success measured. Quite apart from the fact that it is advisable to regularly put established event formats to the test, fundamental questions also always open up potential for new approaches and optimisations. Reflection is a healthy process to further develop established formats generically and to adapt them to changes.

The transfer from analogue to digital events

An obvious approach to transferring previous face-to-face events into a digital format is to broadcast the speakers as a live image while viewers dial in via a conference tool and follow the words and presentations.

Let’s stop thinking at this point, because this is where the first questions arise: How do I invite the employees, do they all have access to the conference tool, how do I appear in front of the camera? How do I enter into dialogue with the audience? None of this is witchcraft if you deal with these challenges beforehand and consult communication professionals to avoid pitfalls and set up the digital event format with little loss of time. It is also recommended to participate in webinars yourself, to reflect on them and to learn from practice. And of course practice, practice, practice. We have compiled 9 tips for appearing in front of the camera as a pre-check for the next webcam meeting.

Let’s continue the considerations on the transfer from analogue to digital: How do I actively use dialogue and feedback offers, how do I motivate active participation, how do I get those who have reservations on board, where do I have to overcome inhibitions among the participants. At this point, at the latest, it becomes clear that a well thought-out concept and good preparation determine the success or failure of an online event. Among other things, success can be seen in the extent to which the various possibilities, tools and apps of online communication have been successfully used for one’s own concept and a positive, committed and effective meeting culture has been established.

“That was the event in the forest after all!”

A second, exciting approach to digital events is storytelling and embedding topics in a world of experience.

Let’s take an example: an event on the topic of “sustainability” is planned. But instead of the previous presentation, a concept is developed that communicates the topic in the environment of “Forest 2030”. Already the invitation, designed as a 360° panorama of a forest, allows to explore the topics at information points and arouses curiosity. The graphic design and the texts of the presentation also use the topic “forest” as a space for experience: dense fir forest, bridges, a river, forks in the path – large-scale photos become visual anchors of the ideas, contents or learning material.

Using analogy and metaphor, it is possible to achieve a high level of attention and memorability. Everyone has experienced this. Statements like “that was the event in the forest…” show how stories can be memorised and memories retrieved.

Know-how is available here

Do you want to prepare conferences or presentations at short notice via web conference? And please do it for different levels of knowledge and in several languages! Or do you need tips for your appearance as a web moderator? Or would you like to establish web conferences as a communication service in the long term?

The experts at Sequentis Medien will make sure your presentation is a success.

With our complete service, from planning, set-up and design to test runs, we respond to your individual needs, accompany and relieve you from the very beginning and inspire your web participants.

Get in touch with us “digitally”! We look forward to you and your challenges and wish you confidence, courage and above all health in these times.


What’s the next step?

For a personal consultation, feel free to contact me at any time.

Mirja Ng-Metzker

Client Relations Manager