How to engage an audience virtually

You don’t need us to tell you that ‘going virtual’ has become the norm for marketers, advertising folk and PR professionals since the pandemic, whether it’s an event to generate new business or pitching for new clients. 

‘Delivery’ is the ability to engage an audience and land a message.

Today, the ability to deliver virtually – as well as in-person – has become a foundational marketing skill necessary to unlock better meetings, sell-ins and workshops. 

Our background

Many of our clients are multi-national organisations with teams in different countries across the world. 

Take Tate & Lyle, for example.

This summer, we delivered a bespoke adaption of our The Key to Innovation training at their Marketing HQ in Chicago. Tate & Lyle were so happy with the training that they commissioned us to adapt the training and deliver it virtually for their local LATAM marketing team.

Thanks to opportunities like this, the ability to captivate an audience virtually is a skill we’ve greatly improved upon since setting up LockSmith.

Virtual delivery – our strategies for success

We’ve distilled our learnings into six core strategies for success which we’ve shared below. Some of these tips we’ve learned from facilitation experts like Kirsty at The School of Facilitation and Rob Geraghty at Presenting Virtually. But the majority of these learnings we’ve picked up from trial and error:

  • Warm up the crowd before the meeting starts. Send out a short video to let them know what to expect, and why it’s going to be great
  • Make people feel welcome. Start with faces, people and conversation. Don’t start with slides.
  • Set the expectation from the start. Create a contract that everyone can buy into, such as whether or not cameras must be on (we always suggest this) and whether or not the session will be recorded. 
  • Don’t overwhelm people with information. When you do use slides make them simple (not much text) and interesting (graphics and animation).
  • Be as interactive as possible. Don’t go for more than 5 minutes without doing something to drive engagement and interaction.
  • Mix it up. Endless slides with the same format are boring. Endless activities with the same format are boring. Try using a variety of tools to engage different parts of the brain, from polls, stamps and whiteboards to Q+A, pairs work and group discussion.

We’d love to chat

At LockSmith, we unlock the potential in the people behind the brands. We do this via a range of marketing, innovation and leadership training courses which can be delivered in-person or virtually.

Do you need help maximising the performance of your marketing team? We’d love to help. Get in touch today.

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