Uncertainty and unpredictability are the signets of this pandemic. The catastrophe has hit the global event industry badly. As Hellen Keller quotes,“ Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see a shadow”. While variability remains, there are positive signs that took the event industry towards the new sunshine.
Many of the conferences and events have been canceled or rescheduled for the coming months, as the current ongoing pandemic has brought everything to a standstill. But some have been very quick to adapt and learn the use of virtual events technology to conduct events online thereby, mitigating the effect of a pandemic on their businesses and even generate substantial profits.
The Global Exhibition Barometer in July 2020 revealed that “82% of companies consider that there is a push towards hybrid events, more digital elements at events”.
- Robust Digitalization
The role of digitization is accelerating in the event industry. Event attendees and organizers are adopting digitization fervently despite the usual risks associated with conducting business online. There have been large developments in the digital landscape in the events industry in recent years and much of this is linked to the great uptake in mobile event apps and digital tech in general at events. Far from causing people to abstain from face to face contact, digital tech is prompting and re-defining what it means to attend a business event. The huge interaction and cross-compatibility of digital platforms and channels have established a booming market for event organizers to create personalized experiences that encourage social interaction.
2. Expanded Attendee Base
Physical venues are prone to impose a limit as to the number of people they can accommodate. Virtual events enable us to extend and host unlimited people for a fraction of the cost. By creating a virtual live event, the potential audience has expanded dramatically. The world has been re-established as a global space as digitization is taking such a defining position in this pandemic. However, this time it is a virtual space that connects all those who are sitting in one’s element waiting for these hours to pass. Breaking all the geographical barriers, Virtual events are a sigh of relief as there are no travel constraints. As a result of this transition, people across the globe can experience their treasured and preferred events.
3. Low Expenses
Thanks to virtual events, the overall cost of putting on the event has been greatly reduced, 75 percent less expensive to be specific. Aside from expensive travel costs, Planners can save on staff, venue, setup and takedown, attendee’s hotels, meals, travel costs, and so much more. Virtual events cut all these costs out of the picture. The only cost planners worry about paying is the costs of the virtual meeting platform. The organizers have reduced their expenses and operational charges and consequently increase their ROI potential.
4. Time saving
Although virtual events do require some setup time, it extremely takes less than that of an in-person event. The attendees require no travel time! So, the employees and attendees can use that time to work on all the other important things that need their attention. Also, some attendees want to attend a few particular sessions of the event and not the entire conference. In such conditions, one can go live for those particular time slots and save their precious time. This way, attendees can continue their daily business tasks and work into their schedules as well.
5. Work from Home Benefits
Working remotely, just like all other industries has been quite positive for the event professionals as well. Several event management companies have experienced higher productivity and lower stress among employees. Working remotely has shown that employees become supple and tend to be happier because working from home leads to lower stress, provides more time for hobbies and interests, which leads to the healthy mental health of an employee. In addition to personal health and comfort, coworker and manager relationships can be more positive without the disturbance and politics that come along with an in-office job.
Despite the negative disruption that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused to the global events industry, the positive rays of hope flourished by the ingenious creativity of some event professionals and the developments in virtual event technology have also had some positive impacts on the industry overall.