Human beings spend more time interacting with technology than at any other time in history. In many ways, this is a good thing. But it isn’t all rainbows and butterflies.
Our reliance on modern tech has led to a strange phenomenon known as digital fatigue.
In this article, we’ll explain what digital fatigue is. Then we’ll share seven tips you can implement to help your audience overcome it. That way your virtual events, webinars, and other forms of video content can succeed. Sound good? Great, let’s get started!
What is Digital Fatigue?
Digital fatigue is a form of mental exhaustion, caused by an overexposure to technology.
You might experience it after a full day attending video conferences. Or countless hours conducting online research. Or venturing down an endless YouTube rabbit hole.
Sound familiar? You’re not the only one. A recent Deloitte study found that 32% of Americans feel like technology takes a toll on them. Parents with children (43%) and remote workers (40%) are even more likely to experience digital fatigue, according to the same report.
This is a problem—both for society at large and for businesses that rely on digital channels to reach and engage their audiences. The question is, what can you do about it?
Fight Back Against Digital Fatigue
For your business to succeed, you need to overcome your audiences’ digital fatigue.
How does one accomplish this? By providing amazing online experiences. Here are seven tips to make sure your virtual events and webinars delight attendees.
1. Know Your Audience
This is sales and marketing 101. If you don’t know your audience, you’ll never capture their attention. And if you can’t capture their attention, you’ll never make sales.
So take a moment to consider your target customers. Who are they? What do they like and dislike? What are their goals? What challenges do they face on a daily basis?
If you can’t answer these questions, you need to take time to learn about the people your business is attempting to reach. The easiest way to do this is to talk to current customers. After that, scour social media, online message boards, product review sites, etc.
When you understand who your audience is, you can design online events, webinars, and other digital experiences that actually engage them. Speaking of engagement…
2. Focus on Engagement
Audience engagement is the magic cure for digital fatigue.
In most situations, people get burnt out on technology because it doesn’t add value to their lives. It’s not because technology is inherently evil, or anything like that.
Think about it: being able to read and answer email on a smartphone is awesome! It means you can get work done while you wait in line at the grocery store, or while sitting on the couch watching the latest and greatest Netflix series. Um, yes, please!
The problem is that most people receive dozens of poorly written emails, promoting products or services they don’t care about, every single day of the week. Enter digital fatigue.
When planning an online event, look for ways to increase engagement.
You can do this by covering topics you know your audience is interested in, as well as by encouraging their participation with your content. Why not send a poll or two during your next webinar? Or start your upcoming virtual event with a fun giveaway?
3. Go Above and Beyond
But you can’t upload video content to the internet; then sit back, kick your feet up on your desk, and expect to find success. It doesn’t work like that. There are billions of videos on the world wide web—and more are being added to it every single second of every single day.
Your video content needs to stand out, which means you need to go above and beyond.
Book more popular and charismatic speakers for your online events. Invest in better technology to make the viewing experience more enjoyable for your audience. And weave short videos into your webinar presentations, rather than static PowerPoint slides.
Create better video content and your audience will naturally experience less digital fatigue.
4. Shorten Your Sessions
You know your audience. You’ve booked the best speakers for your next online event or webinar, and invested in top-of-the-line equipment. You even have a few audience engagement tricks up your sleeve to encourage their participation.
Guess what… None of it will matter if your event sessions are three hours long. The most amazing video content gets boring after a while. Best to keep this truth in mind.
Here’s what we recommend: keep individual event sessions and entire webinars to 60 minutes or less. Why? According to Vimeo, that’s what 70% of people want.
Your goal should be to deliver valuable content in bite-size chunks. This will make audience engagement much easier and you won’t have to worry about digital fatigue.
5. Be Willing to Experiment
Your business is unique. Online event strategies that work for one company might not work for yours. Plus, audience preferences change on a regular basis.
Because of this, you should always be willing to experiment with new ideas.
Can you personalize your webinars in some way? Can you add a bit of humor to your virtual event sessions without losing credibility? Can you experiment with new engagement tactics? You won’t know the answers to these questions until you give each of them a try!
Some ideas will obviously be out of bounds. (We don’t recommend giving away thousands of dollars worth of free products unless you can afford it, for example.) But others, like adding a networking component to your webinars, are definitely worth trying.
By experimenting with new event strategies, you’ll help fight against digital fatigue.
6. Provide Hybrid Experiences
Here’s a wild idea: add an in-person component to your virtual events and webinars. That’s right, turning online-only get togethers into hybrid shindigs can help banish digital fatigue.
Fortunately, there are plenty of software tools to help you do this.
ClickMeeting, for example, has all the tools you need to sell tickets, connect with attendees, host amazing virtual sessions, engage audience members, and otherwise ensure the virtual portion of your hybrid event is top-notch. All you have to do next is handle the in-person side.
Regardless of which software tool(s) you use, adding an in-person component to your virtual events has multiple benefits. It will allow your brand to connect with potential customers in a real-world setting. It will also empower potential customers to connect with your brand in whichever way they feel most comfortable: face-to-face, or through a computer screen.
7. Take a Look at Your Analytics
Finally, look at your analytics dashboard to see what works and what doesn’t.
Was your last online conference underwhelming? Why do you think that is? Maybe your recent webinar was a huge success? What steps did you take to achieve this?
Don’t just guess at the answers. Take a look at the metrics to pinpoint legitimate reasons for the results you achieve. Perhaps you implemented a new event marketing strategy. Or chose a popular webinar topic. Or partnered with a quality brand to create content.
By analyzing past virtual events, you can discover what your audience does and (and does not) connect with. You can then use this information to eliminate digital fatigue in the future.
Digital fatigue is real. If you interact with your target audience online, you need to find a way to overcome it. Especially if you use online events and webinars for marketing purposes.
Don’t worry, it’s not as hard as it sounds. Just implement the seven tips we talked about in this article. If you take time to get to know your audience, focus on engagement during your events, go above and beyond to impress attendees, etc. you’ll do just fine.
Just remember, to achieve success with virtual events and webinars, you need to invest in a quality piece of software. We recommend ClickMeeting.
ClickMeeting is used by thousands of businesses in 125+ countries around the world because it’s both powerful and easy to use. With our platform you can customize your online events room, encourage audience participation via polls and surveys, and a whole lot more.
Try ClickMeeting for free for 30 days. We’re confident you’ll be happy with your results!