Live Polling Virtual Events

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Live polling questions and tools to elevate your engagement today [real examples]

Posted on 12/08/2020

Live polling is an effective way to engage your audience in virtual events. While it may seem simple, organizers often struggle to find the tools and come up with the questions boosting interaction.

In that light, we´ll delve into the main benefits of live polling. Then, we´ll suggest practical questions you could ask at your event. Finally, we´ll look at the best tools to create and implement live polls that effectively engage attendees.

Live Polling Benefits

Polls can prove to be an excellent tool to capture attendees´ attention. 

As human beings, our attention span is short. If we are merely sitting and watching content, we can get easily distracted. Especially with virtual events, we tend to drift away, check our phones, our emails, or messages. Then, the content in front of us becomes background noise. 

This is a critical issue for event organizers since building a personal connection is at the very heart of events´ purpose. If an attendee is half-listening or not engaged at all, that connection cannot be established, and that personal relationship cannot prosper.

Additionally, while event analytics may show the attendee is present, his or her mind is elsewhere. 

In that context, live polling can serve to engage attendees, by offering them a straightforward action that they can easily achieve. Alternatively, polls can spark a live debate and bring to light contrasting viewpoints by asking though-provoking questions. 

And, live polling enables organizers to connect with attendees on a personal level, making them feel involved in the event. It shows that organizers value attendees´ opinions and that they can contribute to the public debate. It makes events feel more like conversations and less like one-way lectures. 

Alongside that, event organizers can use live polling as a tool to gather honest feedback about the sessions, content, and speakers. Indeed, some attendees may be more willing to express their likes or dislikes or how they rate a session in a live poll rather than in a chat. 

Similarly, polling can engage introverts that may be more reserved about participating in the event´s live chat. 

Finally, polls results and subsequent insights can guide future marketing efforts, and help in creating an event program based on attendees´ interests. 

Live polling questions you should ask

Choosing questions should be a well thought out process. Don´t choose questions at random to engage attendees; think about what you want to know. Here are some main questions types that can help your event, deliver insights, and elevate the attendee experience. 

Questions to get to know attendees 

As marketers, we usually want to know as much information as possible about attendees. Whether it´s demographics, job position, industry, or seniority level, attendee information can always prove to be useful.

After all, attendees are an important part of your audience and are likely to come back to your future events. And, you may not have collected detailed personal information from your event registration forms. 

So, here are some examples of event poll questions you could be asking:

Where are you coming from? 

  1. North America
  2. South America
  3. Europe
  4. Asia
  5. Africa
  6. Australia

Are you an event planner? 

  1. Yes
  2. No 
  3. No, but hoping to be one in the future

While your event attendees may not be entirely representative of your entire brand audience, poll results can certainly give you some valuable insights. 

If your organization is an event agency and your marketing efforts are targeted at event planners, you will probably want them to be present at your events.

Questions to uncover attendees motivations

The main reasons why people attend events are often assumed to be that they want to know more about industry trends or delve into the burning issues. However, going beyond assumptions and asking directly through polls can be extremely helpful. 

Example event poll question: Why did you join the event today ? 

  1. Networking with peers
  2. Learn more about X 
  3. For the free drink
  4. To meet speakers

For instance, networking could come out as the most important reason your attendees are at your event. Then, you certainly would want to offer an optimized networking experience at your next events. 

Questions to reveal attendees´ interests and professional issues 

Furthermore, live polls can be used to examine some of the most important issues that professional peers are facing. This can guide marketing strategies and help you in curating content that will be useful for your community and audience. 

Example event poll question: What is your biggest challenge when organizing a virtual event? 

  1. Attracting sponsors
  2. Engaging the audience
  3. Increasing registration
  4. Audio-visual tech problems

If, for example, attracting sponsors is revealed to be the number one issue, you may want to write blog posts or create ebooks offering tips and advice on how to create sponsorship proposals. 

Best tools for live polling

After having carefully examined which questions to ask, consider which tools will help your polling stand out. 

One option is to simply ask attendees to respond to live polls by typing “a,b,c or d” directly into the live chat. Most live stream platforms such as Youtube do have a live chat feature, which makes this option incredibly easy to implement.

However, it is also the option with the most limitations. With a high number of attendees, it can prove impossible to track since you have to manually count all the answers. And, from the attendees’ perspective, it offers little engagement. 

An alternative is to use a plugin app that is especially designed for polls, Q&A, and quizzes such as Slido or Kahoot. Their main differential is that they offer a slick user interface and experience, making polls an interactive and fun activity for attendees. 

Nonetheless, a potential downside is that attendees may have to leave the event environment to answer the questions. Although it may be as simple as scanning a QR code or clicking on a link, this may deter attendees from participating.

Besides that, if you don’t pay for premium plans, the number of respondents could be limited and you may not be able to fully customize the polls and offer an on-brand experience. 

Finally, the best option could be to use a dedicated virtual events platform with built-in polling.

One such platform is InEvent, that offers a seamless experience for attendees as they can navigate to the polls by simply clicking on a tab inside the event environment.

Apart from delivering an on-brand experience, event organizers, session hosts, and speakers can track the poll results live. This empowers attendees to drive conversations and shape the session discussions. 

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