The past year has come with tons of changes, and one of them is the massive rise in online events. In fact, virtual event-planning has increased by a whopping 1000%.

Virtual parties have allowed us to keep socializing and celebrating life’s milestones in a safe, distanced way. However, virtual parties do present unique challenges that can seem a little bit intimidating at first.

If you’re preparing to host a virtual party and you have some questions about what you can do to put together a truly show-stopping event, you’ve come to the right place.

Read on for our top tips on how to host a virtual party that every guest is guaranteed to love!

Take Care of Nitty-Gritty Details First

First thing’s first: you have to get some of the less fun details out of the way before you get into the fun stuff.

Start with a platform. Popular virtual meeting platforms include Zoom, Google Meet, and FaceTime, although there are plenty more to choose from. (It’s also worth noting that some virtual activities may utilize their own virtual meeting platform.)

Once you decide what platform you use, learn how it works. Make sure that you know how to add or invite people to your meeting, how the mute/unmute functions work, and so forth. That way, you can prepare to address any technical difficulties your guests may have.

Make sure you also know how many people your platform can host at a time. That way, you know how many people you can invite to your virtual party. Then, make your guest list and remember that oftentimes, about 30% of invited guests may not be able to make it!

Decide On a Theme

When you’re hosting a virtual party, it can feel a little difficult to make everyone feel engaged and involved. Since everyone is tuning in from a separate space, how do you make sure that the party still feels unified?

Deciding on a theme is a great way to create that classic party atmosphere! A good theme is simple, clear, and easy to implement. Oftentimes, a party theme is reflected in what people wear.

For example, if you plan an eighties-themed virtual party, you can encourage guests to wear their best eighties-style wardrobe. Make sure that your theme is accessible and won’t require people to go out and buy a costume, since most people are probably sticking pretty close to home.

Figure Out a Way to Play Some Tunes

A virtual party doesn’t have to involve music, but it certainly can. The problem is, how do you make sure that everyone can hear it but it isn’t drowning out the conversation?

It might seem feasible to create a playlist and ask everyone to turn it on at the exact same time. The problem is that if anyone is off by a few seconds or there’s a bit of a feedback delay, the whole thing is going to sound really cacophonous.

Instead, find out if your platform makes it possible to play music through the app, itself. For example, Google Meet will allow you to connect your audio input to the app as long as you’re playing music through Google Chrome’s connection to YouTube or Spotify.

This is another feature you may want to figure out in advance since it can get a little tricky. If you decide that it isn’t worth the trouble, that’s okay, too! Your guests may want to focus on the conversation more than the music, anyway.

Incorporate Fun Activities

Another way to encourage engagement is to incorporate fun activities. If your guests spend tons of time during the work week on the phone or in virtual meetings, they may be experiencing a bit of “Zoom fatigue” as it is. Giving them a break from the need to make constant conversation is often welcome.

Some activities that translate well to a virtual setting include word association games. Oftentimes, these games don’t require any props or other visuals and you can learn the rules online. Familiarize yourself with the rules in advance and practice explaining them before the party.

If you’re really looking for some stimulating fun, consider getting an Online Escape Room for your virtual party. Online escape rooms are just like in-person escape rooms! You still get the chance to explore, solve puzzles, decipher clues, and work together as a team to come up with the answers.

Send Out Party Invites In Advance

It’s important that you send out virtual party invites in advance. It’s easy to assume that since most people are at home and don’t have to leave to attend a virtual party, your guests will be available at the last minute. However, people are still busy with their day-to-day lives and it’s best that you give them the opportunity to plan your party into their schedule.

A good rule of thumb is to send out invites one to two weeks in advance. If you’re hosting a larger virtual party, you may want to ask your guests to RSVP so you know how many people to expect. Then, send out a reminder about three days before the actual party, just in case someone forgot to put it on their calendar!

Host a Virtual Party People Will Talk About for Years

Over the past year, we’ve learned a lot about meeting up over the internet. Now, you may be ready to get together with friends and host a virtual party of your very own. With our tips, you’re sure to put together a virtual party that your guests will be talking about for years!

Looking for more lifestyle tips and guides? Take a look at our lifestyle section for the inspiration and information you need to keep things fresh and exciting.