Planning virtual meetings or events? A few expert hints, tips, and strategies can help you make the most of online conferences and conventions. Case in point: The suggestions below, which offer a number of ideas for how to take your live-streaming programs to the next level. Be sure to check back often for more virtual meeting and event tips, as we frequently take a look at what’s happening in the world of business get-togethers and special occasions.

Topic: Public Speaking Essentials: Create and Give Better Presentations

Scenario: Business leaders are often great at running their business, but aren’t always extroverted, may struggle with public speaking, and don’t know many simple tricks that can help make their presentations stand out.

Insight: People can absorb about 15 minutes of information on a concept – it pays to break presentations into these smaller blocks – and think in terms of analogies and metaphors, which is why stories are so powerful as opposed to statistics (they serve as a form of mental shorthand). Likewise, they respond better to graphics and explainer videos that visually summarize complex concepts and help them retain them more effectively. Online audiences have even shorter attention spans and require more interactivity. In all cases, you always want to grab attention out of the gate with a disarming joke or story, build empathy, and focus on 1-3 key concepts – then reiterate these concepts at those 15-minute (or shorter) intervals.

Topic: 8 Ways to Conduct a Successful Online Meeting

Scenario: By now, we all have major Zoom fatigue, and attention spans are smaller when videoconferencing as well – management teams and event planners need to redesign meetings for the virtual world to be more attention-getting, impactful, and engaging.

Insight: Designed to be smaller, more bite-sized, and to the point, online meetings need to build in a tighter agenda; more interactivity; and less distractions. They also should be recorded and transcribed (even Zoom offers a built-in tool), and be designed so that if employees need to do private huddles/breakouts in working groups they can, or skip as needed and be able to pick up crucial insights later. Similarly, there are many touches you can add (surprise guest appearances, supplemental guides/giveaways, etc.) to help liven things up and maximize takeaways.