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Almost a year has passed since the Covid-19 pandemic turned the world of events upside down. Many events got cancelled. Many got postponed. And many more went online. The dramatic shift to virtual events created all sorts of new challenges for planners. From rethinking agenda design and managing remote speakers to dealing with new tech and finding interesting ways of keeping people engaged.
Yes, virtual events will never replace the face to face experience and in-person events will slowly make a return in some form or another. But if there’s one take-away from 2020, it’s that virtual events can be incredibly valuable. You can still create a sense of community with audiences. You can reach out to more people who typically don’t attend in-person events. You can still provide education and learning and give attendees the tools that help them engage and make valuable connections – much in the same way you would for your in-person events. And you can still generate revenue too.
With all this in mind, we thought we’d share our top stories from 2020 covering different aspects of virtual event trends. These were ten articles on our blog that really hit the mark with our readers and give a good indication of the kind of topics that organisers seem most concerned about too.
Based on unique page views and social media shares, have a look at our most popular event management stories from 2020:
No one really knows what events will look like in a post COVID-19 world. Even when in-person events resume, the reality is likely to be that for a significant amount of time, attendees will be split between those willing and able to attend physically and those who will not. We have seen a number of interesting articles across industry sites which give organisers a lot of good information on what live events may look like in the ‘new normal’ and some of the things they need to think about for their future planning. Demonstrating different approaches and advice, have a look at some of the key things to consider when encouraging attendees to come to your in-person events. Read more.
The new virtual event environment has made the whole process of securing sponsors and exhibitors a lot more difficult for organisers – both in terms of providing value and managing expectations. But the reality is that virtual events can be incredibly valuable for these important stakeholders. They can help them reach out to more people. They can engage with them in more creative and memorable ways. And more importantly, they have more opportunities to extend this engagement long after the event is over. Take a look at some of the key things you need to do to get the buy-in you need from your sponsors and exhibitors around virtual events. Read more.
As the Covid-19 situation spread across the world, our industry faced an unprecedented time of risk and uncertainty. This infographic looks at the results of a research study conducted at the beginning of the pandemic with 550+ event planners investigating what impact it has had on meetings and events. It also looks at how organisers are making critical decisions around cancellations, the uptake of virtual events, what challenges they’re facing – and how they’re spending their time working from home. Read more.
If we look back at the year and assess how things went, what would we change? How did organisers deal with the new challenges they faced? What were the biggest lessons learnt? And what can we do better in 2021? EventTech Talk spoke to some of the industry’s well-known virtual event experts to find out more about their views on the event landscape this year – including what went well, what didn’t and what they think will be the biggest trends over the coming year. Read more.
Managing virtual events requires a different set of skills from event planners – from filming and broadcasting to writing scripts and dealing with new tech. But according to a recent poll from Eventsforce, 53% of event planners don’t feel they have the skills or experience in running successful online events. This could be very worrying, especially as these events are going to be around for a while. Have a look at some of the key traits and skills organisers can focus on to run more successful virtual events. Read more.
Research shows that 1 in 4 event planners see managing delegate expectations as one of the biggest challenges of the job in the last year. Organisers want to be doing everything they can to protect their delegates. They want to make things easier for them, continue educating them, whilst minimising disruption and anxiety. But it’s not easy. Have a look at the best ways of communicating with attendees in the three most likely scenarios – cancelling or postponing an event, going ahead with an event and making the move to virtual. Read more.
Event planners all around the world are having to make difficult decisions in a constantly changing environment. Many are also having to deal with the financial consequences of cancelling and rescheduling events – which adds another level of burden especially when it comes to dealing with insurance cover. So what are some of the critical things organisers need to understand about event insurance in the current climate? What should you realistically expect from your insurance provider if you’re cancelling an event and how can you prepare for the future? Read more.
In a short period of time, organisers have had to quickly adapt their skills set to a virtual setting. They’ve had to understand the increasing expectations of delegates that require more and more from a virtual experience. They’ve also had to deal with many issues that typically come about in an online setting. Have a look at dome of the most common mistakes that appear time and again in the creation and delivery of virtual events – along with some best practice advice on how to avoid them. Read more.
Although a lot of online events these days are paid-for affairs – the majority remain free to attend. And this is partly because many organisers become a bit stuck when it comes to thinking how they can charge for virtual events – a recent poll showed that 40% of event planners are concerned about charging people for their online events. The reality is that virtual and hybrid events both present a perfect opportunity for event organisations to increase their revenue – whether it’s through ticket sales, bookable items, exhibitors or sponsorship. And it doesn’t have to be as complicated as you think. Read more.
Virtual event platforms can come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. What might seem like a good solution for one event may not work for another. So how do you choose the right one? Based on recent discussions we’ve had with clients and other organisations pivoting to virtual events, have a look at some of the key things all virtual event platforms need to do to help organisers make the most of their technology investment. Read more.
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