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  • Writer's pictureRichard Pagett

How to host a virtual press event

In what may well have been industry-firsts, Build PR held two virtual press launches during the first month of the COVID-19 crisis. With enthusiastic engagement from journalists and clients alike leading to extensive coverage, particularly online and on social media, the results far exceeded all expectations.

Here are our hints and tips for marketing managers on how to host a successful virtual press event.

1. Plan and rehearse

It sounds obvious, but planning a virtual event as rigorously as any normal press briefing is the foundation for your success. Don’t forget you have an extra layer of tech and connections to plan for too. Check in with your guests and make sure their meeting links work beforehand. Build PR also helped the client with rehearsing and pre-planning responses to questions too.

2. Camera on or off?

Some people just don’t want to be on camera, so respect it and make your guests as comfortable as possible.

3. Don’t just PowerPoint!

Make the virtual event engaging! One of our clients launched its range of innovative hand tool products for 2020, so as well as stunning visual assets like video, they also had products on hand to show journalists key benefits right there and then.

4. Be flexible on schedules

Work patterns have changed. Be flexible on timings and follow up afterwards to make sure attendees have all the information they need. A good agency will take the pain out of this part, especially one which has close links to the journalists you want to reach.

5. Measure your results

We measured the success of the virtual press briefings by using key metrics, including the number of titles we engaged with, the opportunities to see the coverage we secured, share of voice, the page views from the online coverage and click throughs from social media.

Finally don’t forget the goodwill for your brand you will have built during a difficult time.

For help with your PR contact us on 01727 808805 or email at

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