A virtual Christmas party is exactly as it sounds. A holiday party but all online.
A simple video call will definitely not offer the engagement people are looking for. Let’s face it. They did it for the better part of the year. Screen sharing or exchanging notes on a company wide call can begin to feel like an internal meeting. This one has to be more than that, with all the festivities of the holiday season.
How can you ensure your Christmas party is set up for success? Read on to find out!
Plan Your Virtual Event
You can now plan a lot of the activities for in person events, but online. vFairs is transforming the virtual world by offering unique features to create virtual engagement. Event planning is stressful to say the least, so you will need to choose a platform that offers all the solutions for you.
Invite Your Guests
Love Christmas invitations? You can still create those invitations, but with some flare! You would be going paperless and still creating pre-party excitement for your virtual party!
A customized email invitation can direct your guests to the event landing page! You can include all the GIFs, banners or images that you wish. You guests will RSVP when they register for the event. You can include all the fields you need in order to create your party agenda. Depending on how many guests are willing to participate and their varied interests, you can plan activities accordingly.
Worried they will forget to attend? Send in confirmation and reminder emails a couple of days before the event, highlighting important details such as timings, dress codes etc. Yes, even with a virtual event you can set a dress code. This will help make the occasion even more special, and get people in the Christmas spirit as well.
You can even customize how your attendees login to the event. They may not need to set up login details. Instead you will set up a single sign on. You can even add a two step authentication to ensure it is just your employees who attend this informal event.
Create Your Virtual Space
Did you have a venue in mind for your physical event? Maybe you had your eye on a golf club, a restaurant or even a specific office space in your building.
You can model the virtual space after your venue with 3D designs. This will make your guests feel like they are actually there. Maybe there is a fireplace where you can hang Christmas socks, or hang festive lights on the stairway bannister. Or if the event was under a canopy in the garden of the golf club. You can let your imagination run wild and rest assured your ideas will come to life with the right virtual events platform.
The virtual world is your oyster and you can give it all the charm and festive decor you want.
Consider a Hybrid Event
You can have the best of both worlds! Why not host a virtual Christmas party for your remote team, but a physical one with those who can to the office. A hybrid events platform event will enable activities to be executed virtually and physically. All talks or sessions can be part of a live stream that can be viewed by those at home.
Hybrid event platforms like vFairs offer all the solutions you need. Kick back, relax, and feel positive that you have a smooth online event. All with the experience of an in person event.
Does planning a hybrid event sound too daunting? A dedicated project manager will plan and see to it end to end. Without you having to worry about a thing.
Choose Your Video Platform
Live videos will be important for all the activities you plan to include as part of your event.
No matter what video platform you choose, onsite integrations will allow you to incorporate any platform your company is used to. These can be incorporated with vFairs and all the features offered by your chosen platform will be included. Be it Zoom, Google Meet or Webex. Videos will enable you to interact with guests, and engage with them.
Plan Your Activities
Let’s brainstorm. Is there a happy hour? How will your guests enjoy snacks or dinner? Do you want to include a performance? A magic show or a stand-up comedian? Could you do a virtual-themed movie night that everyone could tune into? What other themed activities can you do? Do you want to include some ice breakers, as well?
Create an agenda for the event which will include all of these things. Depending on these, engage with vendors or performers.
Make sure to send attendees any relevant material prior to the event. Food, drinks, art supplies, decorative supplies, you name it. Your guests will definitely enjoy a pre-event goody bag.
Pro-tip: Include your guests in the brainstorming phase. You could even set up a party planning committee, from within your employees who will be in charge for the virtual Christmas party. Dedicating a few people to this task will make it easy for you.
Choose Your Vendors
Is there a vendor who can put together your goody bags for you? Does a local vendor work really well with your company? Are there hot favorite foods your employees like? What kind of drinks do your guests usually have?
Depending on how you answer these questions you can choose your vendors.
Don’t Forget The Games
Want your guests in “Kahoots’’ (pun intended)? Gamify your event so that guests can play with one another and compete through the leaderboard. This can include a game of Kahoot, scavenger hunt or trivia. You can even include some games within your activities. More on fun virtual game ideas later in this article!
What Can You Do at a Virtual Christmas Party?
Have your company CEO boost morale with a speech acknowledging everyone’s efforts and sharing company successes. Use this time to engage employees with fun Q&As or polls that are fun and friendly. Use this opportunity to allow them to be heard.
Everyone can then raise their (pre-gifted) glasses to the closing lines!
Execute Your Planned Activities
With on-site technical support available, you can now take off with your planned activities. Should there be any lags, or difficulties in connection vFairs technical support team will be ready and available. They will also liaise with your activity speakers/performers for you. All to ensure you have a smooth sailing and successful event.
Party Group Chats and Networking
Is your company too large to have one single call? Create ‘round tables’ where different departments or team members can virtually sit together.
No event is fun without our friends, and this is the best way to keep them all together. Managers can address their colleagues and some of the activities can also be divided according to these groups. Such as happy hour and virtual games.
T’is the Season of Giving
Christmas is also a time to help those in need. Encourage your colleagues to participate in charitable activities as part of your virtual Christmas party.
Organizations you could suggest for employees to volunteer with could include:
This organization focuses on girls between the ages of 9-21 who identify as refugees and asylum seekers. Girl Forward offers them tutoring, mentoring and safe space programs. Their volunteer program allows individuals to mentor or tutor their girls. This can be done virtually as well for those who would still like to stay at home.
Charity Water provides access to safe drinking water to those who don’t have access to it. They do this by drilling wells. They have an interesting way to get involved. By dedicating your birthday or anniversary you can create a fundraising campaign, in order to fundraise for the cause.
This would look great as part of the company’s corporate social responsibility profile. Not to mention, give you some publicity on various social media platforms.
Pro tip: For a different spin, you could also exhibit some organizations on your virtual event platform. Speak to different NGOs or not for profits and ask them to set up booths. They can share some of their work and how individuals can be involved.
Share Your Experiences
Guests can then share their experience at the charitable organization at the virtual event. You can push the conversation with questions like:
- What inspired you?
- What moved you?
- Were there any special moments you will cherish forever?
- Do you feel like you have made a difference?
Encourage your guests to post on any of the social media platforms including Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter and LinkedIn. Integrated with a relevant hashtag through walls.io, your guests can display their adventures through an on-demand social media wall. This can wall can be accessible to them before, during and after the event.
Set Time for Dancing
No party is complete without dancing. When everyone has had a few drinks and is ready to let loose, bring on a DJ or pre-planned playlist and have them dance their night away!
What Christmas Games Can You Play Virtually?
1. Do You Want To Build a Snowman?
Get your guests to compete for the best snowman!
Create time-lapse videos of you and your family building a snowman together. Add interesting conditions like the snowman can’t be more than three feet high, or has to look like a Christmas themed character. Helpful hints: Santa, the Grinch, or elves!
Guests can then share their videos via the social media wall feature on the website through fun hashtags! #doyouwanttobuildasnowman #snowandsteady #frozenpart3
Guests can upload pictures or GIFS to vFairs photo booth tool. They can then deck it out with stickers and backgrounds. Ask your guests to vote on their favorite images right in the event platform. The one with the most likes wins the competition and a company gift hamper!
2. Virtual Christmas Cocktails
Find a local bartender who can teach your guests how to make holiday-themed cocktails at home! Send them a small cocktail kit prior to the event to be part of this virtual activity.
This is a great way to spend happy hour and to have drinks ready for the company-wide address.
3. Holiday Pictionary
vFairs now offers collaboration through Miro whiteboard. Have your guests play Pictionary! Share the item to draw via private messaging. They can draw on the screen, and team players can guess! Get someone to keep score on the chat.
Drawing on a virtual platform can be all the more difficult, making for hilarious drawings and more of a challenge. Keep the theme relevant to Christmas, of course.
4. True Confessions
On the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, they play a fun game called “True Confessions”. Guests provide a truth or a lie. Fellow team members are then allowed 60 seconds to ask questions to help determine whether it is a truth or a lie. Add a twist by limiting the stories to the Christmas holidays.
5. Tree or Gingerbread House Decorating
Provide your guests with decorative material for trees or a gingerbread house kit. You could challenge them to live decorating competition. Set the timer, and have them begin! The best or funniest decoration will win!
Read our blog for some more virtual holiday party ideas.
Christmas is everyone’s favorite time of the year. Don’t miss out on it and consider hosting a virtual Christmas party. Make everyone in your company still have a good time before the year ends. After all, t’is the season to be jolly!
Want to Learn How to Host Virtual Events?
Explore The Organizer’s Playbook to Hosting Amazing Virtual Events