A topic that generates much debate within our industry centers around why virtual event platforms use physical event graphical templates. Scott Lum, a Marketing Manager at Microsoft, makes a compelling argument for why the industry should move away from making the on-line event look similar to a physical event.
It is our belief that the physical event graphical representation makes users feel comfortable with where to navigate and find content. It is also a good mechanism for allowing individual sponsors or organizations to present their brand and content in an aesthetically pleasing manner on-line via the branded booth.
While at the virtual edge summit, David Rich, a Senior VP of George P. Johnson, said that marketers must meet their audiences where they are to take them where we want them to go. For now we would argue that the majority of on-line event audiences are still at a place where physical event graphics are needed. As this industry matures and gains wider adoption alternative graphical interfaces will become the norm (many providers, ourselves included, have these options currently available).
For on-line event organizers and producers content is still king but ignore the queen, user experience, at your own peril. Making it easy for the user to access the content and interact with others is paramount to ensuring a positive user experience. Take advantage of direct links to presentations and booths when applicable and keep it simple. The fewer clicks it take for a user to get where they want to go the better.