The 4 essentials you need to successfully move your event online
Lockdown restrictions may be steadily lifting in the UK, but the government has stressed that they’re leaving themselves wiggle room in their current roadmap. What’s more, there are plenty of event organisers who still think that due to the many complicating factors, holding events in person still simply won’t be possible this year. If you’re one of them, you may be considering the best way to move your event online instead – and if that’s the case, as well as making sure you’ve got all the proper power distribution equipment set up, here are four other absolute essentials you’ll need to consider in advance.
1. A platform
Researching and selecting the appropriate platform for your event is likely to be an absolute top priority. Now, some small events have found some success on the major streaming or social media platforms like YouTube, Facebook or Instagram. However, while they’re useful if you have a limited budget, the flipside is that they tend to have quite awkward limits on them, especially if you’re not using the paid services. Instagram has a 1-hour broadcast limit, for example.
You may well find that you need a more dedicated paid platform, and preferably one that’s stable enough and suits your specific purposes. You’ll need to take into account the size of your event, including your broadcast reach and planned number of attendees, as well as the nature of the event itself.
The nature of the event is particularly important, as certain types of platforms might be better suited to specific types of events. You’ll need to look at the platform’s capabilities, such as whether or not it can support Q&As, surveys, or audience participation. A business seminar may require a speaker to take questions from the audience, for example, whereas comedy shows thrive off audience engagement. It’s all worth thinking about!
2. The right setting or environment
Right after the broadcasting platform itself, this should be your very top priority. If you already have a set (or the elements of a set) under construction, you might be lucky in being able to simply move it all to a studio. If it’s going to be in someone’s home though – whether that’s yours or someone else’s – then you’ll need to vet it very carefully, and have it prepared a good time in advance.
That means, for example, no drying racks in the background, or piles of old clothes, or dirty plates left on coffee tables. Even relatively informal events have to maintain a minimum level of professionalism if you want to keep your audience coming back! Plus, it will need to be properly furnished with any facilities or technology you might need on the day, such as microphones or amplifiers.
3. Speakers and performers
Now, it’s unlikely that you’ll have to procure performers to your event as such, since you likely already have some scheduled from when the event was going to be in person. But we mention them because it’s worth taking extra care to keep them posted on all the latest developments with your event, so that they’re each clued in with what they’re doing, where they’re going to be, and what’s expected of them.
They’ll probably need to know the basics of how to work your chosen platform, some of the features of the software, and the ways you’re expecting them to engage with the audience. They’ll also need to know what you expect to have them prepared in advance, such as any recording facilities or any specifics of their environment (such as banners or posters in the background).
4. A backup plan
Let’s be realistic for a moment. When we’re talking about open-air music festivals held in sports grounds or fields, they’re rarely disrupted by a network outage. A music festival without internet can still perform perfectly well as a music festival. But it can absolutely disrupt your event. In fact, online events are vulnerable to a number of potential problems that generally don’t affect real life festivals, such as grid power outages, or spilled cups of wine, or dropped laptops.
Therefore, it’s best to have at least one redundancy plan for continuing your event, should any of the above possibilities become a reality. And if you can’t continue the event, what are you going to tell your attendees, some of whom may well have paid for their tickets? Will you reschedule or refund? When could they expect an update if that comes to pass?
If all goes well, hopefully you shouldn’t have to worry about this. But if it all does go belly-up, you’ll be glad you planned ahead!
Whatever your plans are this year – whether you’re preparing to hold your event online or out in the open air – you can count on us here at Rubber Box to help, with a diverse range of power distros and rubber boxes to choose from. You can get started now on exploring some of our products – like our 32A supply power distros – or if you know what you want already, you can always request a quote now! We’re always happy to provide guidance you might need, so if you’re looking for a quick word of advice just give us a call on 01282 677 910.