Will this new phase of the pandemic post covid, render virtual events obsolete? The lockdown sent us all online. We got used to In person meetings becoming zoom or teams meetings. The question is will there still be a place for online events and meetings Post-COVID?

 

IMPACT.

I spoke to Bari and Blue, the owners of Sage Events Management. They told me that the world has tilted so much due to the pandemic that, in their opinion, post covid it is never going to return to where it was. There are 350 million users on Zoom every single day around the globe which means that virtual events still have a place. Virtual events have the global reach that in person events do not. Therefore, your revenue and impact can dramatically increase. If you want to make a difference, you need a global audience. It is said that in person events can potentially eliminate 99% of your audience. 

 

REACH.

The reach of virtual events is often higher and your reach is global. You may have whole families watching the screen which would not be the case in physical ticketed events. It takes away the need to travel, to leave your family for the weekend. Bari and Blue say that a higher percentage of virtual event attendees stay for the full course of the event. In their experience they say that is not the case in in person events. They say there is higher interactivity and immersitivity because of this.  It is important to consider interactivity when hosting or attending a virtual event. All events have the ability to be exceptional, extraordinary, or ordinary. It is no different for virtual events. It is important to actively engage people. Call out their names, ask them questions, send them into breakouts. You may have to work harder to get people interacting. It can be a challenge to ensure attendees are present in a virtual sphere.

It is important that you make sure the event is 100% live. No recordings. Ensure the tickets are paid for upfront. Register your delegates. Many virtual events turn to gamification to ensure attendees are present. They are constantly rewarded for showing up and that keeps interactivity up.

 

DEMOCRATISATION.

Some in person events are held in stadiums. The people closest to the stage pay premiums and those in the ‘nosebleed’ seats, far away from the stage pay less. Some might say they are getting a lesser experience. With a virtual event, there are no bad seats. Everyone is getting the same experience. Everyone has a front row seat. It allows for better communication. For those who want the VIP experience, technology allows for this. Break outs are common at virtual events and it allows for those who want to pay for that heightened experience. 

 

MORE LUCRATIVE.

Live virtual events can generate more money. For entrepreneurs the idea is to make money. To net a higher gross figure. In person events by their very nature have a lower reach. Virtual events open up to a global audience. This means more ticket sales and higher net profits as your overheads are also lower. The user experience must be carefully considered though. Hosts need to invest in the right technology and equipment. 

 

HYBRID EVENTS.

Some conferences do not work online but that will not affect the future of online events. Instead, often those events which require a degree of in person attendance offer a virtual arm to the event also. There’s now a whole new world of hybrid events. In person events run together with virtual parts of the event. They are equally powerful and they both have their own strengths and their own weaknesses. The future of events remains to be seen but virtual events are here to stay.

 

If you want to hear more about virtual and hybrid post covid events, have a listen to my podcast The Transition Man here and if you want help to grow your business or learn some public speaking strategies get in touch with me:

Remember failing to learn is learning to fail.

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