Few individuals had considered virtual events before the epidemic, but this format has filled a unique and significant demand for both large and small businesses and organizations throughout the pandemic. However, as more of the world tries to come back to life before COVID-19, what will virtual events be worth? To find out, we spoke with leading executives and investors in the industry to hear about the major trends they are witnessing, as a follow-up to our March 2020 poll.
They claim that certain use cases have proven. Before 2020, there were a lot of little specialty events that were hidden in the rear of a major in-person conference. Now, there are a lot of them year-round. Internal virtual events can also be beneficial to firms in terms of connecting and engaging remote-first teams. However, some respondents admitted that low-quality virtual events are becoming more regular, and everyone agreed that much more work needs to done.
Certain sorts of events will reschedule for in-person attendance. Obviously, not anything like a President’s Club, where the firm honors you with a party in Hawaii, will virtualize. Virtual events, in my opinion, will continue to grow in popularity as more events focus on boosting reach. We are also seeing a trend toward smaller, more specialist events. If we look at a general pediatric meeting before the epidemic, for example, a participant may only be interested in two of the 200 topics available. However, we have noticed an increase of specialized events that focus on extremely narrow issues, which helps participants streamline these events.
I believe that such events will continue to take place online because they are easier to organize and allow for more in-depth discussions. Because more organizations are going remote, an internal virtual event for employees is another sector that is gaining traction. We believe that many internal events, such as business happy hour – events that help employees engage better — will continue to take place electronically. As a result, we believe that many use cases will continue to virtual, and that they are likely to be better virtual.