BuzzCast and Whova are both powerful virtual event solutions designed to meet different needs. Whova is an all-in-one event management software, equipped with ticketing, marketing, and event hosting functionalities.
BuzzCast, on the other hand, is a dedicated events solution, engineered to deliver the best virtual and hybrid events. It does not aim to be an end-to-end management solution, and therefore doesn’t include ticketing features.
If you’re considering choosing Whova or BuzzCast, you’re likely searching for a premium virtual events solution. And both Whova and BuzzCast are excellent options. However, depending on your specific needs, you might benefit more from one platform over the other.
So, let’s look at how the two compare, and where they’re similar.
Branding and Design
One of the most significant differences between BuzzCast and Whova is the design and customization features.
Whova is not a white-label platform, but it does offer basic customization features. The platform has a clean, simple interface that lets you customize your event’s main page by:
- Adjusting the color scheme;
- Including your logo;
- Changing icon names, colors, and languages;
- Uploading a header image at the top of your home page;
- Adding custom images.
If custom branding and white-label features aren’t important to you, these features are sufficient to associate the event with your brand. However, your event’s design will be similar to any other event hosted on Whova. So you can think of it like borrowed territory – attendees will know the event is hosted by your brand, but the venue is associated with Whova.
BuzzCast takes a different approach here, because most of our clients want virtual and hybrid events that are truly theirs. BC is equipped with robust customization features, and it’s completely white-labeled. So instead of just inserting your brand logo and adjusting some colors, you can customize the entire look and feel of your event.
Here’s an example of the home page for an event the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation hosted with BuzzCast:
So when you’re choosing between BuzzCast and Whova, design features and branding are key differentiators to consider. If white-label features and advanced branding isn’t particularly important to you, Whova’s offering is sufficient. Otherwise, you might want to consider BuzzCast.
Customer Support Offering
Whova is primarily a self-serve solution, so you pay to use the platform, but setting your event up is left to you. This means your in-house team will need to plan and organize the event, both from a production and technical standpoint. Otherwise, you may need to hire virtual event production services.
Whova provides customer support during business hours on the weekdays, through email and live chat. The virtual event solution’s users shared mixed reviews about the quality of the platform’s customer support; some found the support team to be attentive and helpful, while others criticized the technical support.
BuzzCast’s customer support structure and packages are different; BC is more geared towards a full-service model, so you can request as much support as you need. You can choose from our three-tier support options:
- Level 1 – Have BuzzCast’s production team at your service.
- Level 2 – Work with BC’s streaming and AV teams.
- Level 3 – Get help planning your entire with our event experts.
BuzzCast doesn’t just take care of your technical woes, but also your production needs (if you desire). Our partner production company, The Buzz Lab, lends its team of industry experts to help with your production needs.
The advantage of choosing BuzzCast’s support offering is you can tailor the support package to your needs. Opt for as little, or as much, support as your event requires.
Technical Architecture and Broadcast Capabilities
BuzzCast is a relatively new virtual events solution, founded in 2020. The platform was specifically designed to meet modern event needs, which include conducting digital events at scale.
So to ensure consistent, seamless performance and zero downtime, BuzzCast was built from the ground up using Amazon Web Services’ serverless technology. Thus, BC is equipped to handle even the heaviest load, responding instantly to traffic spikes and effortlessly catering to events with over 100k attendees.
Whova is also a cloud-hosted solution, but it does not offer the same performance as BuzzCast. We found user reviews that shared downtime issues with Whova-hosted events, whereas BuzzCast guarantees 100% uptime. One user shared their downtime experience with Whova in their Capterra review:
“I used it for a large virtual conference (1000+ attendees, up to 10+ parallel sessions), and it was down for >1.5 hours. Extremely embarrassing and impossible to recover from it. Medium impact weakness is that the interface is not very responsive (i.e. slow). Minor impact (but nonetheless frustrating) weakness is that the admin interface is buggy (or has ‘quirks’ like they call it themselves).“ (Read the full review)
We also discovered reviews expressing concern with the platform’s integration with Zoom and other native conferencing software, with complaints about the stream lagging and losing quality.
However, it’s worth noting that while some users complained about streaming issues or downtime, Whova has overwhelmingly positive reviews. The platform performs well for small-to-medium-sized events, but may not be as robust for large-scale events.
Hybrid Event Capabilities
As the world gradually recovers from COVID-19, live and hybrid events are becoming more common. With hybrid events expected to gain even more traction, you might want to know how BuzzCast and Whova deliver.
From a technical standpoint, both platforms are equipped for hybrid experiences. They both come with advanced mobile applications (BC’s is a web app, whereas Whova’s requires installation), custom agendas and ticketing, and robust functionalities to deliver immersive experiences.
However, if you need advanced support options, then BuzzCast has more to offer. We’ve found that many organizations prefer to have at least a few extra helping hands for hybrid events because they’re more challenging to plan.
Depending on your needs, you can opt for BC’s fully managed experience (where we help you plan everything), or a lower-tier support package where our team acts as an extension of your own. Unlike most virtual events solutions on the market, BuzzCast can also help you with production needs.
The Verdict: Which Platform is Best for You?
BuzzCast and Whova are leading virtual event solutions with a lot to offer. Whova has been around since 2013 and has a deep portfolio, whereas BuzzCast is a newer platform with high-profile clients like Uber, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Just For Laughs.
So when choosing between the two, it’s important to consider your individual needs. You might want to consider:
- Your branding needs. How important are white labeling and advanced customization for you? If it’s unimportant, Whova and BuzzCast are both viable options. But if your goal is to design a custom, unique event, then BuzzCast is the exclusively superior option.
- The size and complexity of your event. While both BuzzCast and Whova are suited for small-to-medium-sized events, BuzzCast guarantees 100% uptime and 1080p broadcast quality for large-scale events too. That’s Netflix-level streaming quality.
- Your support needs. While Whova’s support team is attentive and helpful, their support packages are limited because the platform is primarily self-service. BuzzCast, however, is a fully managed solution that offers various support options tailored to your needs.
Additionally, BuzzCast and Whova both offer custom pricing depending on your event’s needs. So if you’re on a budget, you might want to reach out for a quote to compare each platform’s offering.
You can also schedule a free demo with us to get a feel for BuzzCast’s robust capabilities. We’ll give you a complete walkthrough and discuss your event’s needs.