If you haven’t planned a virtual event before, knowing where to start can feel daunting. Below we’ve answered 18 virtual event production questions we receive most often. Please also visit our Livestreaming and Virtual Events webpage and contact us to discuss your specific plans and goals.
Can you help me livestream a:
Virtual event? Yes.
Hybrid Event? Yes.
Pre-recorded Appeal? Yes.
Live auction? Yes.
Virtual Awards Ceremony? Yes.
Do you have any experience with virtual fundraising galas?
Absolutely! We’ve been providing livestreaming and webcast services since 2017. Between March and December 2020, we helped produce 184 virtual events and nearly all of them were fundraisers.
How far in advance do we need to book a date for our virtual event?
The fall calendar filled fast and we’ve already booked virtual events well into 2021. We recommend confirming your date with us as soon as possible or your first choice might not be available.
I’m looking for a team to manage my livestream. What are your services?
Our professional livestream production team includes our production manager, a dedicated technical producer and technical director working together to ensure a high-quality webcast. Learn more about these essential roles.
For our virtual gala, we are considering using Zoom but hope to have short videos and fund-a-need. Are these elements that you can support?
Definitely. For entirely virtual events, we establish a Zoom or vMix call with the event hosts and that video conference is fed into the livestream. The technical director runs the event like a broadcast television show. Your audience will see seamless switching between live hosts, videos, slides, graphic overlays, and web feeds (such as a fundraising thermometer).
Are you able to do picture-in-picture?
Yes, we sure can.
Can you help me write my script?
We can recommend creative and talented event strategists who offer copywriting services.
Who should host my event?
That really depends on the nature of your event and organization. Your executive director who is comfortable on camera could be a great host because their passion for the mission will encourage donors to give more. We detail what to expect hosting a virtual gala in our blog. If you’ve always featured a specific emcee at your in-person events, consider hiring that person to emcee the virtual event, too. Plans to include a live auction as part of your virtual event will require an engaging benefit auctioneer. We can recommend excellent benefit auctioneers who have experience with virtual fundraisers.
Should we pre-record some of the event?
Yes. Filming segments in advance keeps your event on pace and on message. We can work with you to film those video messages. We also have tips to film yourself for streaming.
What is included in the virtual event package custom landing page?
Our custom landing page is a great option for organizations that do not have a webmaster on staff. The landing page we create for you features your livestream embedded in the page, your event logo, your sponsor logos, an optional chat feature, and links to your donation page, home page, or other event promotional pages. See examples here and here.
What can we do live from your studio?
We can do almost anything as long as the total number of people in the studio is fewer than the current legally allowable size limit for gatherings in Portland, Oregon. You’ll have access to pro audio, lighting, and video gear and a team with many, many years of live event audiovisual and media production expertise. We also have a designated area for your essential support staff.
- Watch examples of in-studio virtual events.
We want to host at our location. Is that possible?
Yes, we can livestream on location. Specific technical needs must be met for on-location livestreaming including access to power, a fast and reliable dedicated internet line, access to the port, and direct communication with the on-site IT manager. The internet line must be free of upload restrictions and firewalls (often encountered in office buildings.)
For locations outside of our region, we’ve successfully partnered with local media teams who film the hosts live on-site, send that feed to us, and our team produces the livestream, transitioning between the hosts and pre-recorded segments, while adding graphics and overlays.
- Watch: We worked with with Atomic Productions filming on-site to produce CUESA Sunday Supper hosted at the San Francisco Ferry Building and AIM Youth Mental Health AIM Beyond Virtual Gala hosted at Pebble Beach.
I’ve seen events that feature singers performing together from their own homes. Can you help me with that?
What platforms do you usually use for a livestream program?
Our go-to platforms include Vimeo Live and YouTube Live. Besides being feature rich and rock solid on the tech side of things, it’s relatively simple to embed these links on your website or just stream directly to your channel. We also offer custom landing pages embedded with the livestream.
How do we incorporate fundraising technology into our virtual event?
There are numerous fundraising software services available. Many of our clients work with Greater Giving or SchoolAuction.net or Auctria. These systems feature online auctions, payment processing, registration, and donor communications built-in. We’ve also seen organizations use Give Lively as a low-cost fundraising solution. We are able to show any web-based software live during your virtual event.
Can you guarantee there won’t be any technical issues?
We do everything possible to lower the risk of technical issues during a livestream including investing in professional webcast switcher, encoder, software, and computers. We have a backup stream. Our internet connection has a high upload speed and more than sufficient bandwidth. If the virtual event is streamed from our studio, we can also control the video and audio feeds, ensuring both are high-quality. If your live event is hosted from the emcee’s home and their internet is slow, it will impact your livestream. That is also true for people watching your event. If their internet is slow, the livestream may appear to freeze. The good news is that the stream will catch up and the recording of the virtual event will be available to watch anytime. This interview provides more information about livestreaming tech.
What about hybrid events?
Even as event restrictions ease, a quick return to large events is unlikely due to physical distancing rules. Hybrid events allow you to reach your event goals by targeting both in-person and online audiences. See this example inspired by drive-in movie theaters. It’s best to think of hybrids as virtual events filmed in front of live studio audience. Our experience in livestreaming, media production, and live event audiovisual is the perfect combination for hybrid event production. We think these three types of hybrid events will be most popular.
How much does livestreaming cost?
Our virtual event package starts at $3,500 for events that are entirely virtual. That means the host is live in their home or office, using their own microphone, web camera, and internet connection. Costs increase for virtual events hosted from our studio. The most expensive virtual events are streamed on-location. Please contact us to discuss your virtual event needs and request a quote.
Originally posted July 9, 2020; updated October 29, 2021; updated February 26, 2021.