In person events are back, but are people showing up?
While the coronavirus epidemic might have increased virtual events, the truth is that the pandemic just added speed to the expansion of an already burgeoning sector. In 2020, the global market size of virtual events was estimated to be $94.04 billion, and it is Not slowing down anytime soon.
Even through in person events are back but are people showing up?
Following are the reasons which might be impacting audience choice to attend In-person event:
Hybrid Events continue to see growth
Although the coronavirus epidemic had a substantial negative impact on some industries, the one sector that managed to thrive was virtual events. Businesses have begun investigating cutting-edge strategies for connecting with their audience as the globe begins to adjust to this new reality.
The sector is expanding quickly, and now with the world opening, hybrid and virtual events provide a convenient and safe alternative to physical events.
Shift in Attendee Preferences
It’s time for event organizers to acknowledge the shift in participant preferences. For in-person leisure events or retreats, individuals could still be eager to travel, but it will be more difficult to get everyone in a conference room for B2B activities.
Many professionals do not want to go back to the pre-pandemic routines, which included flying across the nation for meetings, conferences, and training sessions. Also, virtual events provide attendees the chance to participate in a setting where they feel at ease. This is crucial for all attendees, especially those with disabilities who might encounter accessibility issues while traveling or attending in person. In a Social27 survey, 49% of respondents cited accessibility as their primary motive for participating in virtual events, while 22% cited a more enjoyable work environment.
Your audience’s preferences are evolving, so your event strategy must also change.
Hybrid and Virtual Events as a Key Element of Business Success
As a vital component of their entire marketing strategy, businesses are increasingly using a mix of hybrid and virtual events.
The capacity to reach a larger audience, cut expenses, and enhance participant experience are just a few of the many advantages virtual events have over physical ones. Virtual events are also an excellent option for companies looking to reduce their environmental impact.
Sales Goals – Achieving Business Objectives through Virtual Events
Virtual events offer an effective way to achieve business objectives. Companies can use virtual events to generate leads, strengthen brand awareness, develop relationships with customers and prospects, and even close sales. Virtual events also allow companies to reach a wider and more diverse audience than in-person events.
Strategic decisions are based on data
Business leaders want to see data to support their company’s strategic choices and financial investments. For event organizers and marketing professionals, virtual events offer an ideal opportunity to showcase key information and rich data to support the success of their event activations.
When you organize an in-person event, you have registration numbers to support attendance goals and measures. When you organize a virtual event, you have detailed information on the number of participant interactions, sponsor visits, clicks on content, filled-out lead generation forms, live session views, and more. With this data, sponsors and organizers can leverage stronger lead generation and content strategies. Event and marketing staff can also provide detailed reports to demonstrate the success of the event according to their defined KPIs and leverage detailed information to adjust their event strategy for the next event for continuous improvement.
Increased Confidence in Virtual Event Technology
Recent growth in virtual events has been exponential, and it is simple to see why. Businesses had to come up with strategies to go on operating when a pandemic hit the entire planet. In-person events were cancelled, travel was minimized, and companies had to adapt to the new normal by hosting online events. And the result? Companies realized that they could achieve their sales and marketing objectives through virtual events.
This has led to an increase in confidence in virtual event technology. Indeed, virtual events are now considered a preferable option rather than a backup plan to in-person events. The benefits of virtual events are numerous, including the fact that they can reach a much larger audience and be organized at a lower cost. This increased confidence is largely due to the personalization benefits offered by virtual events.
Corporate Sustainability Initiatives
There are more and more companies committing to respecting the environment. According to recent surveys, 79% of companies have promised to be more sustainable or are actively working to do so. So, how do these companies plan to improve their sustainability? By reducing business travel!
In the same surveys/studies, about half of the respondents stated that they planned to optimize their business travel to reduce their environmental impact. To reduce business travel and the frequency of trips, these companies plan to move internal meetings online, limit international travel, restrict the frequency of employee travel, and look for alternatives to flying, such as more sustainable travel methods or virtual participation instead of in-person activities.
With companies looking to limit air travel, in-person events could experience a decrease in attendance. However, those who use a virtual or hybrid event strategy could see an increase in attendance and reach.
Data Analytics – The Importance of Data Analysis in Virtual Events
Data analysis is essential to measuring the success of virtual events. Event organizers can use analytics tools to collect data on participants, speaker performances, attendance time, and other key information. This data can then be used to optimize future events and maximize their impact.
Virtual events are generally more cost-effective for all parties involved – event organizers, participants, and sponsors.
In-person events require significant investment for event organizers. Between venue rental, staff, catering, lighting, and audio equipment rental, and more, costs quickly add up. Virtual events can be a more cost-effective option to reach your audience and achieve your event goals.
For B2B participants, the cost of attending in-person events is a key factor. About 60% of business travel managers surveyed stated that they planned to spend less on attending trade shows and conferences in the coming years.
To travel to conferences and in-person events, you may need to pay for lodging, registration fees, airfare, and other expenses. In contrast, sending employees to a virtual event typically only requires a small investment – registration fees.
Virtual events help you reach your aim of having as many people from your target audience attend your event as possible. Without venue capacity limits, virtual events can accommodate an unlimited number of participants from anywhere in the world.
Virtual Events Provide Personalized Experiences
Consumers are used to personalized platforms and experiences. Whether it’s with TikTok’s “For You” page, which is created based on each user’s viewing behaviour, or with personalized suggestions on Netflix, users are already accustomed to seeing suggestions based on their interests, activity, and preferences. Virtual events bring this concept into the event space.
The Social27 virtual events platform, for example, uses a recommendation and prediction engine to provide relevant recommendations to participants, creating a highly engaging and personalized experience.
Use the Social27 Virtual Event Platform to Organize a Virtual Event
It’s time to start incorporating virtual events into your overall event plan if you haven’t already. You may create events with the aid of the Social27 Virtual Event Platform that will increase your audience, minimize your expenses, lessen your environmental impact, and maintain the satisfaction of your guests.
To learn more about how the Social27 Virtual Event Platform can help you use the potential of virtual events, schedule a demo now.