Ready to plan your next virtual event? This time, why not shake things up a bit by getting creative with your live event and using a theme to boost audience engagement. Whether you’re hosting a virtual event for your employees or planning a networking opportunity for a particular industry, there are plenty of ways to make your live event stand out and be a memorable occasion.

To get your creativity flowing, here are six out-of-the-box ideas to make your next virtual event pop!


Wine & Question Time

Welcome an industry leader or influencer to your next live event and merge a wine tasting class with a Q&A session. This is a great opportunity to get your event sponsored by a local bar, wine company, or vineyard too. Each guest will be gifted a discount code to order a wine tasting kit or bottle of wine prior to the virtual event. On the day, a sommelier will teach your audience how to taste and identify the different flavor notes of the wine. Then with a glass of wine in hand, they will be ready and relaxed to listen to your guest speaker. This is an excellent way to help everyone feel more at ease and confident speaking up and asking questions. Socialize virtually and learn new skills in this chilled-out and casual question time live event.


Virtual Networking

A live event can be made more interesting by inviting everyone attending to network live using breakout rooms. This feature will automatically pair up participants and create ice breaker questions to encourage engagement and help conversations flow. Virtual networking is a fantastic alternative to the traditional coffee and industry meet-up approach especially for people who are shy.A virtual event allows professionals who find networking a scary prospect to meet other people within their field of work or with a shared interest without forcing themselves into awkward social situations. After a couple of minutes, participants are brought back to the main virtual room before breaking up into small groups once again. This unique dynamic is best for short and sweet conversations, where people can swap contact information if they wish to.


Coffee for Startups & Entrepreneurs

Indulge your love of coffee with a live event that focuses on sharing business ideas whilst enjoying a coffee break. An online coffee event can easily be achieved by sending your participants a free coffee voucher or a bag of coffee from an independent coffee company. Add in a branded mug for additional exposure!Now invite your live event participants to take part in a virtual brain-storm activity to share and develop interesting business ideas as a group. You could ask entrepreneurs to provide their elevator pitch or ask industry leaders to share their thoughts on potential gaps in the market.


Virtual Escape Room

A challenging virtual event theme is an online escape room. Ideal for team-building, bring your employees together and see if they can solve a series of clues, riddles, and puzzles against the clock to win the game. There are several escape room companies now offering live virtual game nights for businesses or groups of friends, or you can make your own and strengthen your team’s ability to work remotely but towards a shared goal.You can use print-off puzzles or hide an Easter egg on a particular website or social media account and ask your entire team to hunt it down. Or to really maximize engagement, add a role-play activity, by giving each virtual event participant a character to play in a murder mystery online game.


Beat Hanger with Home Deliveries

While virtual events are becoming the norm, hunger can quickly disrupt a live event and take away focus from what you’ve got to say. To avoid hanger, the emotional outbursts that can come with being hungry, treat everyone to a home food delivery. Gifting your viewers a voucher so that they can order a takeout of their choice just before your live event, allows you all to dine together and guarantees everyone will be energized and ready to participate.

Top tip: Contact your local food delivery company to see if they’d like to sponsor your virtual event or provide a discount.


Branded Goodie Bags

Finally, we come to branded goodie bags. Everyone loves a free gift, and just because your hosting a virtual event doesn’t mean you can’t provide a physical incentive to sign-up and take part! Ask participants to provide their home address when they sign up for your next live event so that you can send them a branded gift box. Inside each bag or box, provide relevant gifts to your topic of choice or theme. So, let’s say you’re hosting an international business event. Consider vouchers for online language courses, international candy, introduction offers to business software, and unique coffee blends to try from around the world. This incentive not only rewards people for signing up but can also be used to run a competition or giveaway. Consider a scratch card or physical puzzle that everyone needs to do simultaneously during the virtual event to boost your overall engagement rate!