Bring back networking by hosting social webinars with Airmeet.

Hosting Boring Webinars? Add Networking to the Mix & Make Them Better

Sourav Aggarwal
• October 4, 2021

1458 words

(8 min read)

Do you use webinars to build connections and grow your network? Here are some tips to help you do networking like a pro.

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Webinars – the word brings to mind an hour-long session where we might learn something new. Different people seek different things from any event. While some webinar attendees may only be there to gain knowledge, a considerable populace also wants to consider the possibilities of networking in webinars.

The advantages of networking are already handed over to you. It helps you build and maintain relationships while giving you access to knowledge and helping to create contacts whom you can reach out to for professional help.

Event hosting platforms today offer many networking opportunities. Without being generic, this article showcases a platform that provides niche intent-based networking choices for hosts and attendees. Airmeet, the virtual event platform which can scale up to tens of thousands of users, is the platform in focus.

Social lounge

Airmeet’s social lounge helps to bring back networking and engagement to your webinars.

The social lounge on Airmeet is a virtual space where participants can connect with speakers and virtual attendees through a live feed. In this space, you can create multiple tables/booths.

Each table/booth can be customized and named as per your need. An attendee can join any table, talk with fellow webinar attendees on the table and move on to the next one.

Airmeet offers a lot of customization in the social lounge. You can rename the social lounge, the names on the tables, use various logos, and include table numbers.

Users renamed the social lounge and gave their attendees a floor plan that enabled them to navigate through the social lounge. It gives your entire webinar a “live-event” feel.

Let’s look at Florida International University. This powerful feature enabled FIU to host a fair with multiple booths. It was especially beneficial as it offered intimate conversations between departments and students with video on the table. Once the students were done with one department, they could move on to the next and thus explore the entire social room.

FIU renamed the social lounge as the “University resource fair.” They created more than 30 tables for various departments and named each table accordingly. The social lounge automatically numbers each table. It helped them create a floor plan, similar to a physical event, for the departments and students to locate where they need to go. Since the tables have numbers and editable table titles, the floor plan spelled everything out and structured the event for all.

Creating a table setting is fairly easy and quick, and it requires no logistic assistance and acquisition. As the webinar host, it is up to you when you would want the approach to networking to take place. You could make time for the same before, during, and even after the event.

Also, you could get a little more creative and introduce some icebreakers and/or team-bonding exercises. It will help make attendee networking slightly easy as well.

Effective ice breakers for your networking event

Chatbox

Use the chat box to talk to each other and network with other attendees.

While most platforms only offer you the chance of a group chat, Airmeet has raised the bar and allows webinar attendees to engage in a private conversation as well.

So, if you have met that one individual with whom you would like to interact more, take the conversation beyond the social lounge. You can chat with the person in the personal chat window and further the attendees’ network.

Contact cards

Airmeet is the only event hosting platform to offer this feature. Much like physical interactions, Airmeet attendees can exchange their contact cards virtually at Airmeet’s social lounge. By exchanging and saving virtual business cards, you have the contact details of all you networked with at the click of a button.

Q&A

In Airmeet, you can use the q&a to engage with your audience.

The Q&A window of Airmeet is the space where you can share your views, pose questions to the speaker, upvote, and comment. The speaker can also present the question on the screen and mark which are already answered. A very interactive feature that you can introduce at the end of a session.

During these Q&A sessions, you may get to know the thoughts and views of individuals. It helps you narrow down people you may want to interact and network with.

The backstage

Airmeet ensures that even webinar hosts and speakers have the chance to interact and network with each other. Backstage is a space exclusive for hosts and speakers to connect before, during, or after an event.

Networking is not collecting contacts; it is planting relations.

Arena

This revolutionary idea changes the way business is done. With this virtual exhibition area, exhibitors can showcase their products and services to potential buyers. 

Exhibitors have an opportunity to meet with interested prospects looking for new innovations and lead capture opportunities for future references. Participants also have the option of choosing whichever booth catches their interest.

This innovative call-to-action button allows visitors from afar to push contact details directly into your hands, so you do not miss out on leads.

Speed Networking

A fresh new networking feature that is geared towards people who want to have robust conversations with others instead of 1-on-1 chats. You’ll get an experience that is similar in the feel and tone of a real-life event.

With the help of virtual events, you can find a good match for an intimate chat with someone on your level. The host gets to decide how long each discussion would take before proceeding to the next set. This allows participants not only to speed network but also to make great connections through meaningful conversations.

But before all these may take place, you also need to consider the following points when planning some virtual icebreakers:

  • Geographic Location: Virtual events are designed to be flexible, but they cannot account for all the possible quirks of every location. Your audience’s time zone and interests need to be considered to plan a successful webinar presentation.
  • Time: Upcoming webinars also have to consider the allotted time frame to be an engaging experience for other fellow attendees.  
  • Cultural background: Some of your virtual meetup participants may have cultural barriers or differences. Be mindful of the activities’ appropriateness for all types and levels of people in attendance. You should make everyone feel comfortable included from the start.
  • Technology: Your upcoming events provide networking possibilities for your business to flourish. Using the virtual event platform, you can set up advanced breakout sessions where people from different industries can share ideas to foster collaboration.
  • Inform participants in advance: Attendees with networking backgrounds need to be reminded and informed before the event. Make sure to make their digital experience a good one by providing them with a copy of the webinar registration and confirmation email. 

Conclusion

As author Susan Roane says, “Networking is a process of enrichment and not an entitlement.” So, use these tips above and create opportunities by networking in webinars for your attendees while they learn and grow. 

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