As major home improvement gatherings like markets, reunions and conferences transition to virtual events, making sure you’re prepared to take full advantage of those online meet-ups is crucial. Take a moment to review some best practice tips for attending virtual events.
- Check your internet connection.
One of the key benefits of a virtual meeting amid the COVID-19 pandemic is the ability to see your colleagues “in person” through streaming video. But receiving video and transmitting your own takes more bandwidth than simple online activities like checking your email or visiting websites. Be sure your internet connection can handle streaming video. If you’re still having trouble, consider resetting your modem or contacting your internet service provider.
- Test your audio and video settings.
Communicating clearly is key during online meetings, and you can ensure you’re heard loud and clear by testing your audio and video settings well before you attend a virtual home improvement event.
Online meeting platform Zoom offers some more information on how you can test your computer or mobile device’s audio and video settings, including information for iOS, Windows, Linux and Android devices.
- Brush up on online meeting etiquette.
GoToMeeting, another online meeting company, has some basic tips for online etiquette. From ensuring you keep your microphone muted during the event to staying aware of your surroundings, following some best practice guides can help you and other meeting attendees share a positive, productive meeting.
- Stay informed on the home improvement industry.
Before your virtual meeting, take time to review the latest news in the home improvement industry. This research will help you come to your virtual event well prepared and ready to discuss the issues affecting your business. From knowing what the big boxes are planning to seeing how independent retailers across North America have dealt with COVID-19, industry updates can help you make the most of every virtual event.
- Share updates on your business.
Many online meeting platforms allow for users to share media like documents, photos and short videos. Many online meetings begin with an ice-breaker and a chance for participants to introduce themselves, so have a few key updates about your business in mind. You could even keep a few pictures of your team on your desktop to share virtually.
- Stay active, even after logging off.
The most productive online meetings will have tangible follow-ups. Once a virtual event ends, take a moment to review the information you received and consider how it will impact your business. Write down any ongoing questions you have for your wholesaler, co-op or conference speaker and reach out to them once an event ends to keep the conversation going. Meetings may be virtual but their benefits should always be felt in real life.