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Does your organization offer services to facilitate virtual workshops or other virtual events? Sponsor this idea to raise visibility for your organization!

Top Virtual Workshop and Class Ideas

How Do Virtual Workshops and Classes Work?

Virtual classes and workshops involve your organization instructing attendees on a particular subject through a virtual streaming or event platform. In order to participate in the guided lesson, attendees will pay a registration fee to your organization. That’s the long and short of this event type!

However, while this fundraising event sounds fairly simple, where things start to get a little tricky is deciding what subject or activity your attendees will be interested in. To help get the ball rolling, consider these popular and effective virtual class ideas:

Top Virtual Workshop Ideas to be Inspired by

1. Arts & Crafts Sessions

Everybody needs a bit of art in their life. Arts and crafts workshops are an engaging idea for any demographic and can be cheaply hosted by your organization. For example, you might put together a timeless paint and sip for adult donors, while beginner’s origami and holiday decoration making are perfectly suited for children and their families.

You can either distribute or mail out art supplies to attendees, or share a list of what they’ll need to go out and purchase to participate. Be sure to keep things simple and within a reasonable budget!

2. Fitness & Dance Lessons

Get your supporters on their feet with a fun fitness-based fundraiser! For example, yoga is an especially popular idea, allowing participants of all ages to relieve stress and be guided through a relaxing exercise.

Alternatively, if you want to spice things up, you might host a salsa night or another dance lesson. This is an especially appealing fundraiser for couples, as it gives them a chance to re-connect and learn a fun new activity together without leaving the house or hiring a babysitter.

3. Technology Workshops

In our increasingly digital world, coding and understanding how to use certain software solutions are important skills that people are striving to master. That’s what makes technology workshops such a prescient idea.

With every passing year, these skills become more valuable. And by hosting classes on these subjects, you can help your supporters to increase their marketability and advance their careers.

4. Speed Networking

Speaking of helping supporters to advance their careers, speed networking nights are a great workshop idea if your supporters tend to be clustered heavily in specific industries and are looking to move forward in that sector. 

These workshops involve you not only going over important subjects and trends within that industry, but also giving your supporters the chance to break off, chat, and build connections within their professional field.

5. Cooking Classes

Cooking is a valuable and timeless skill that everyone can benefit from. To host your cooking workshop, create a delicious menu and appoint a “chef” (who may even be a real chef!) to lead the class. 

Be sure to share an ingredient list with attendees in advance so that they can go out and stock up on all the necessary supplies to create their meals.

How to Plan a Virtual Workshop: Event Checklist

Review Donor Data to Pick the Right Idea

One of the most important aspects of hosting a successful virtual workshop is picking an engaging subject or activity to share with attendees. Of course, we’ve already mentioned a handful of popular and well-liked workshop ideas you could tinker with. However, for best results, you should take a closer look at your unique donor base to determine what lesson plans they might like.

For example, demographics like age and professional concentrations can help you narrow down the most appropriate class ideas. Additionally, you could even send out a survey to your supporters to get their direct feedback on what workshops they might like!

Collaborate with Event Guests and Sponsors

In order to maximize the effectiveness and profitability of your workshop, seek out partnerships with other organizations or even corporate sponsors. For example, if you’re hosting a cooking class you might invite a local restaurant to sponsor the event and provide a guest chef to administer the class.

This will not only boost the success of that particular event, but it also lays the groundwork for an important professional relationship that can be used again in the future!

Use Multichannel Marketing to Promote Your Event

Multichannel marketing involves the use of multiple channels to promote your event. This creates multiple touchpoints for your audience and ensures that as many eyes as possible are on your upcoming workshop!

In particular, major channels to focus your efforts on include email, social media, your website, and traditional print media like direct mail or printed flyers. Of course, be sure to consider every channel’s unique best practices as you build out your marketing materials. For example, while email is more text-heavy, social media is especially suited for images and video marketing.

Leverage Effective Event Software

It can be easy to just find a simple streaming tool, share a video feed of yourself teaching a subject, and call it a day. But if you want to enhance the event experience and ensure that your virtual attendees are engaged, then more sophisticated event platforms can be a big help.

In particular, some event platforms have features like live chat forums, one-on-one networking invitations, and even interactive stages to make your workshop more than just a glorified Zoom meeting.

Support an Interactive Class Experience

Once your class begins, there are still plenty of different strategies you can use to ensure that your virtual attendees are thoroughly engaged. After all, the last thing you want is for attendees to boredly sit through your workshop and never sign up for another one.

Instead, tinker with these fun tips for an interactive workshop experience:

  • Set up a fun background and dress up for the occasion
  • Kick off your class with icebreakers and mini-games
  • Leave breathing room for questions and reactions from attendees
  • Offer prizes for the best students or other merits that make sense for your event

Additional Resources

If you’re still itching to learn more about how to host a great virtual workshop and other virtual events, then explore these valuable resources: