Vivacious Visuals for Virtual Events
The success of your Virtual Fundraising Event depends on keeping viewers’ attention! How?
When planning a Virtual Gala (VG) or fundraiser with us, you’ll hear the same word come up over and over again. Visuals. It’s vitally important that your VG is as visual as it can possibly be. What exactly does that mean in a virtual format and how can you achieve it? Read on.
You already know the importance of well-produced videos telling your story and informing people of who you are, what you do and why. (We call them anchor videos.) You also know how successful your special appeal can be if you precede it with a powerful, heart-string-tugging video story. But think about other places you can pop in b-roll. Pretty much everywhere! Any time someone is speaking, think of how you can cover that talking head with video clips of engaging imagery, which will keep folks viewing for LONGER. Selecting images that coincide with your hosts’ words has a twofold benefit. First, it’s far more entertaining to watch (more VISUAL). Second, it helps people stay focused and interested, when what they’re hearing coincides with what they’re seeing. And we do know that virtual events that retain their viewers for longer make more money. Remember, there are always distractions for folks watching from home! Anything you can do to drive home your mission will serve you well in a virtual environment
NOW is the time to get creative, do something new and have some fun! Try peppering video vignettes into your virtual program. These short, entertaining little clips serve many purposes. They’re kind of magical in that they can serve as mission moments, thanks, recognition, entertainment… And they can make your show seem even more fast-paced and fun. That’s a terrific illusion to create in a format where you occasionally do need to cover latency. Your talent (the folks you see on camera) have a chance to “reset” when they know they have a bit of time where they won’t be seen on camera. We’re sure if your software could talk, it would also thank you for a chance to reset without your behind-the-scenes staff begging it to UPDATE, UPDATE, UPDATE! Even a 15-second vignette is a welcome reprieve from the intensity of a live VG. Another reason to embrace vignettes? They’re a superb way to transition between topics. We’ve talked about the importance of producing a seamless show, with a common theme woven throughout. It’s a great goal to have when planning live events and it takes on even more importance in a virtual format.
Virtual Venue Backdrops
You can Go Virtual! from pretty much anywhere, and thanks to the magic of green screens, you can make it look like your talent is pretty much anywhere, too! Talent can be on beaches, in lovely outdoor gardens glowing with sconces, in front of informative PowerPoint images… What do you want your visual background to be? Perhaps a classic velvet curtain would be the best fit for your event and your org. Classic curtains are lovely and their simplicity helps set off your other visual bells, whistles and lighting options. Sometimes, during the giving portion of virtual fundraisers, the mobile bidding software can display a donation thermometer that dynamically rises as money comes in. Who DOESN’T love to see that?!
Check out our YouTube page for recent examples of virtual backdrops. What can YOU come up with? If a lot of your supporters are competitive bidders, you can capitalize on that spirit by using on-screen graphics to display bid advances. Graphics are yet another tool in your virtual visual arsenal. And speaking of graphics…
Did you know it’s estimated that nearly a quarter of viewers will watch your show WITH THEIR SOUND TURNED OFF? I learned this recently and was stunned to know that nearly 1 in 4 people cannot even hear our fabulously crafted scripts. However, knowing this makes this piece even more important! You can convey a ton of information through graphics – live auction item descriptions, calls to action, appeal stories – pretty much anything your talent is talking about can be emphasized visually. And great visuals reinforce visually what folks are hearing. And you’ll keep attention on the screen if your visuals are good looking!
So whether they’re full-screens, lower-thirds or anything in between, give your graphics the respect they deserve! What’s the point of having a charismatic auctioneer/emcee team and stunning, attention-grabbing videos if they’re sharing the screen with poor graphics? Or worse, none at all?! Bad graphics stand out, and not in a good way. Remember when we recommended you weave a common theme throughout your event script? Similarly, your graphics should have a cohesive look that remains consistent throughout the show.
Ready for some good news? We provide our clients a professionally-produced graphics package to add polish and gravitas to their events. Now imagine a graphics package customized for YOUR brand – your logo, your colors, your unique mission language. We’ve got you covered there, too! We’ll share more details in an upcoming blog. Reach out with questions. We’re here to help!
Here’s an analogy we like to use, that’ll put you in the right mindset to start thinking visually: If you were to watch your livestream without sound, what would you need to SEE to follow along and participate? Vivacious virtual visuals, of course! Reach out and let’s start planning yours today!