What is the difference between Virtual Conference and Virtual Meeting
With the development in advanced technology and unpredictable pandemic situations, the sphere of virtual events is evolving at a pace unmatchable. People are coming together from across nations and businesses to conduct their formal activities on different online platforms. The importance of virtual stages is being understood and is gaining more and more relevance with each passing day.
Organizing destination or venue-based conferences or meetings has become next to impossible due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This is where the virtual world has come to our rescue. Gathering all the employees of the organization in a single place was no less than a tricky task but technological advancements are making everything possible.
Online conferences and meetings have become prevalent among businesses and are helping professionals bring the global industries together without any hassle. The engaging and interactive tools of virtual platforms also allow the attendees to communicate and network with each other in real-time. There are innumerable advantages of the world shifting towards the virtual paradigm of conducting business-related formal or informal events. One of the most important ones is that it’s helping us save our time and resources.
While understanding and getting a hang of all the virtual tools, it is also significant to understand the terms and learn to differentiate between them. So, how is a Virtual Conference different from a Virtual Meeting & what do they mean in the virtual sphere? Let’s first try to apprehend the meaning of both separately to identify the base of distinction.
What is a Virtual Conference?
If we go a few years back when only the term ‘conference’ existed, we realize that all it meant was people meeting formally to discuss a theme and share their perspectives. Before entering the virtual world, a conference referred to an event where individuals from different organizations or businesses would come together and discuss a particular topic. But what does it mean with the prefix of ‘virtual’? It’s pretty simple. Just like an in-person conference, a virtual conference also offers a venue or a platform to the attendees where they can hold a formal conversation on subjects like business plans, ideas, goals, or objectives.
Virtual Conference helps remote attendees access live onsite events from their computers even if they are on the other side of the world. It is hosted entirely over the internet so the participants don’t have to gather in a conference room and that is what people prefer in times of a pandemic.
The virtual tools are designed specifically for such events where the attendees can make use of different online services without any trouble. Virtual conferences also include discussion forums, resource centers, networking opportunities, and the ability to chat with other conference attendees. One of the many advantages of shifting online is that there’s no specified limit in the number of employees attending the virtual conference, unlike an on-site event where only a limited number of participants can be a part of the conference. A virtual conference platform allows organizations to connect with a large number of employees in a common digital space. Also, sharing important information and content with all the employees at once has become an easy task.
All in all, the functionality offered by virtual conference platforms for a conference helps the attendees have an immersive virtual experience while also saving time and resources.
What is a Virtual Meeting?
Similar to Virtual Conferences, Virtual Meetings too provide attendees with a platform to have real-time interaction with the help of integrated online tools. All the advantages remain the same as all other virtual events; like having immediate communication, easy information transmission, simple feedback collection, etc. Apart from this, organizing a virtual meeting has several more beneficial elements like the nature of being environment-friendly and having the ability of globe-spanning communication. Businesses from across the world are relying on Virtual Meetings amidst the pandemic to keep the work going. The online event platforms offer multiple interactive features to elevate the user experience like live chat, screen sharing, instant feedback, document sharing, etc.
There can be a single moderator or leader in the virtual meeting but all the attendees are involved in a conversation one way or the other. Also, the experience in a virtual meeting is customizable according to the organization’s needs and requirements. Overall, virtual meetings are simpler than on-site meetings and can be organized way more quickly.
Principal Differences Between Virtual Conference and Virtual Meeting
Although Virtual Conferences and Meetings are alike yet they are still different in so many ways. All virtual conferences can somehow be described as a meeting but all the meetings can not be described as a conference.
Let’s have a look at the six basic differences between virtual conferences and meetings:
The objective or purpose of a Virtual Conference is to have speakers from a shared field of interest and conduct knowledge-gaining discussions with individuals sharing their perspectives, leading to more informed debates.
However, the purpose of a Virtual Meeting is to discuss problems and reach a solution.
Virtual Conferences are mostly longer than virtual meetings. While a virtual meeting can range from a few minutes to a few hours, a virtual conference usually takes place over the course of a day or more with proper breaks in between the sessions.
A virtual conference is always larger in range than a virtual meeting. While the conference involves attendees and delegates from multiple organizations across countries, virtual meeting usually involves the participation of some employees from the same organization or a few employees from two different organizations.
A virtual conference takes place in large or multiple virtual rooms while a virtual meeting usually takes place in a single virtual venue
Virtual conferences are always formal in nature while virtual meetings are always less formal than conferences.
The virtual conferences are always planned in advance and have a specific flow and order of speakers or events. However, virtual meetings don’t always have to be planned or have a certain order of speakers.
All in all, even though there are some similarities and differences between virtual conferences and meetings, it is significant to perceive the importance of both as the world gets digital.
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