How to hold a virtual press conference

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During this pandemic, one of the best ways to conduct news announcements, product launches, or media briefings is through a virtual press conference. A virtual press conference is a virtual news conference that connects brands to news reporters and to journalists. Compared to an in-person event, it saves time and resources for reporters and saves them from any potential Covid-19 related problems. But how does one conduct a virtual press conference?

Here’s some tips on how to hold a virtual press conference:

Before anything else remember to have a newsworthy announcement 

Always make sure you have a newsworthy announcement for the reporters to cover. If you feel that news is significant yet doesn’t need an event, use a news release. It will save you and your organization time and expense of holding a press event. 

Where will the event be held? 

Zoom? Google Meet? MS Teams? The virtual platform that you will choose determines the length and capacity of your event. If you want to control the amount of participants opt for a platform with a closed chat. If you wish for it to reach more viewers you can go live using Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or Youtube.

Inviting your audience

Who are you inviting? And why them? Send your invites at least a week before. The earlier the better. When you are invited send it through email with an invite (poster) that answers what, where, how, when, and why.

Make a detailed list of who you are inviting to the event. Reporters have busy schedules, it’s best to send a detailed invitation online or through mail beforehand so that they can be informed of the event. Afterwards you can send little reminders days before the conference. 

Who’s going to talk? 

A moderator or a speaker is important for the event. Choose someone that is at ease when talking to a crowd or a group. They can ease the conversations and ease any awkward situations. They will be incharge of the questions asked and explaining the content of the event. 

No dead air

There should be no dead air. If something goes wrong (technical or anything), make sure that the host, moderator, or speaker is prepared to entertain the guests, talk to them, explain something about the event, or thank them, so that no one leaves and loses interest. You should make a script for the host so that everyone (internal) knows the sequence of the event. 

Schedule extra time for your event 

You’re not totally sure how long the conference may last. So it’s for the best to allot some time for any delays or questions at the end of the session. 

Test your equipment for the event 

Test your camera, microphones, lights, internet connection and other props that you may use for your conference before the event itself. Having a dry run is good so that you can practice and make sure that you’re set is optimized and ready. Always have back-up files and a tech person around just in case there’s any internet glitches so that someone can jump right in. 

Keep their attention

During the event itself you should have it scheduled. Remember to have a message that you want to share to your audience. It has to be something that keeps their attention, easy to understand, and correct. Introduce this message in the beginning and repeat it at the end of the conference. Keep it as simple as possible. 

Other ways to keep their attention is to have a presentation and/or videos For presentations you can use Microsoft Presentation, Presentation, Prezi, or Canva. You can also show a video at the beginning or in between presentations to keep your audience interested and so that there’s no dead air. 

Plan to share supporting materials 

Preparing supporting documents beforehand can help with informing your audience on what the conference is about. You can prepare supporting documents through a media kit that will be sent to attendees. These media kits include the press release, the deck used, the recording of the event, and the images they can use for posting. 

You can also make these supporting documents available online, and send the links to the reporters,influencers, or your invited guests. These documents have a summary of the discussion, supporting information, and some information to explain the information and future material for future reference. 

Have a Q&A

Programs have a chat box wherein the audience can ask questions to the speaker. Prepare backup Q&A in case no one asks questions or people are too sky to ask. This is to make sure that the presentation is clear for all. 

Going through audiences’ questions can help with helping others understand the messages or concepts discussed during the conference. 

Thank everyone

After the Q&A thank everyone for attending, give reminders and other things you want to announce. 

Give a token of appreciation 

Give a token to your audience. It can be a simple gift card or anything. It doesn’t need to be a physical item. As long as you can give your audience a token it will be helpful, especially if they’re in the media. 

Virtual press conferences have become an alternative for people to conduct public relations during the pandemic and have made it easier for more people to participate from the comforts of their homes. Through the steps mentioned above, you can make your own effective and efficient virtual press conference. 

Still need help in setting up a virtual conference? Schedule a FREE 20-min. consultation with Ambidextr today in our Calendly link:

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