How to host a virtual meet up
One of my favourite things about the blogging industry is the meet ups. I’ve made lots of friends through them and I’ve got to try out lots of new things. Since we’ve been in lockdown, lots of organisations have taken things online, hosting virtual meet ups so, in case you wanted to host your own, I thought I’d put together a guide on how to host a virtual meet up.
Whether you’re just getting your friends together, hosting a blogger meet up or an event for your company, here are some top tips for an online hang out.
I think it’s really important for any online meet up to have a theme. There’s no getting around the fact that video chat is pretty awkward, even for the most confident of us and so a theme gives everyone something to focus on rather than having to make conversation with people they may not have met before.
Yugen Explore hosted a meet up this weekend for people who love hiking and the outdoors which really inspired me to write this post as it was done so well and was so much fun. Everyone met on Zoom chats beforehand (I was a team leader!) and then everyone went for a two hour walk at the same time. I really enjoyed it – getting outside has been such a tonic to me at this time, and I loved making new friends who have the same interests as me.
I’m lucky to live in Derbyshire, just outside of the Peak District, so there are quite a few places just near my house where I can walk.
You might be sick of quizzes by now, but this is a really easy one for anyone to do – it’s perfect for a group of friends and everyone loves a pub quiz in real life. You can take it in turns to host and come up with the quiz questions – extra points for any original rounds! In our weekly quiz one of my besties gave us three items that we had to fetch from the house and points for how quickly we got back.
There are also national quizzes like The Virtual Pub Quiz on a Thursday night which over 100,000 people take part in. You could get into a team with your friends and family on video chat or play against each other. My mum and dad also play this quiz and so we keep texting each other our scores.
I’m really looking forward to the Traverse Events Big Virtual Czech In quiz this week.
Hosting an afternoon tea is quite simple – you just need the participants to pop cakes, scones and little sandwiches on some pretty plates along with their choice of tea – or even a glass of bubbles! If you’re feeling extra energetic, you could bake all the cakes yourself beforehand.
You could even hand our prizes for the most imaginative afternoon tea!
We often do a couples bottomless brunch in real life with our besties so we wanted to replicate this at home for one of our friends’ birthdays. We all bought a couple of bottles of prosecco and set bells on our phones for when we were ready for a top up!
To host a virtual meet up you will need to select the right software. It needs to be something that is accessible to everyone, as well as being easy to use.
You can call people through Facebook Messenger both on desktop and mobile. I’ve used this a couple of times and it seems to work fine for small groups of people, it just looks a little bit fuzzy on my Mac.
Zoom has been used for quite a while by businesses for meetings and I’ve used it a few times with no issues. You can have up to 100 people on a call and you can also use it for webinars. One thing that I do really like about it is that whoever is talking appears larger on the screen, so you can focus on whoever is speaking. It’s also available on desktop and mobile.
I’ve used House Party for the last couple of weeks for small gatherings with my friends. It seems to work pretty well and you can join people on there with no prior notice so if you’re feeling spontaneous you can meet your friends on there.
House Party also has built in quizzes and trivia which saves you from coming up with your own, although a lot of them are very American – there are quite a few where we’ve never heard of the things in the questions!
I love this slogan t shirt that I was gifted from Femme Luxe Finery to include in this post.
If you’re hosting a larger meet up, I think it’s really nice to have a charity aspect to it. At the moment lots of charities are struggling as people are cutting back and lots of them are more important than ever. If you have a lot of people attending, if each one donates a couple of pounds each it will add up to an amount which will make a big difference to a lot of charities.
Enlist the help of others
You can’t do everything yourself, especially if it’s a big ambitious event, so enlist the help of some of your friends, or members of the community to help you to get people on board and engaged.
Hope these tips help you to host your own virtual meet up. The main thing is to have lots of fun with your meet ups – this is our social life at the moment so make the most of it and enjoy it.