Even though there is a lot of uncertainty in the world today, and the hospitality and events industries appear to be bearing the brunt of it, this certainly isn’t an either-or-question.
Virtual events, as crucial as they were during the COVID-19 pandemic, will never replace in-person gatherings, London event companies and the rest of the UK can be certain of.
In 2020, there was a major transfer of offline events into the digital economy. However, there has been a significant increase in the number of communities and organisations establishing their virtual events for the first time.
Conferences and events are key components of the ecosystem of a business professional. People will travel considerable distances to meet others in their business, hear from experts, and network with their colleagues. This, of course, provides value for all stakeholders.
Is there, however, a better way? The world is changing, and we’re seeing an increase in the number of virtual conferences, events, and gatherings. So, what should you concentrate on? Virtual or live events?
Virtual events are fast increasing in both quality and quantity. In-person events will always be appealing, but they may now be supplemented by an online counterpart that delivers a greater reach and experience.
If you believe that a virtual platform can only host certain types of events, you are misinformed. These platforms can be used for a variety of events such as technology conferences, virtual trade exhibits, career fairs, and workshops.
Remember that selecting the correct type of hosting platform is critical to holding a successful virtual event. Workshops, meetings, tradeshows, and employment fairs all necessitate a higher level of networking and engaging experience.
Online “gatherings” will almost certainly play a larger role in keeping corporations and other types of organizations connected in the future, but they will never completely replace face-to-face meetings and events. Why? There are at least six explanations for this:
1 Humans seek face-to-face interaction.
Yes, seeing someone on a video monitor is preferable to hearing their voice on the phone. But nothing beats sitting down with them and seeing them in vivid detail, picking up on their body language, smelling their perfume, and generally sharing a larger, richer sensory experience with them.
2 Some events require a physical component.
Certain sorts of events, such as a tai chi lesson or a product demonstration, just cannot be conducted efficiently online. You can’t have a corporate gathering, such as a wine and dine affair, via Zoom. Well, you can, but there will be no ambiance or atmosphere no matter how hard you try.
3 Physical proximity contributes to greater performance
When the meeting’s subject is vital but not particularly engaging, having other participants near you can help you stay focused. When watching the session on your computer screen, it’s all too easy to let your mind wander or become side-tracked.
4 Technology difficulties have less of an impact on in-person events.
There are ways to deal with the difficulty if a presenter’s microphone at an in-person event goes dead. When an internet connection fails or goes down completely, or a computer freeze, the persons who are impacted are cut off from the virtual meeting in which they were participating, and there may be nothing that can be done. And what happens if they are a key contributor?
When a participant attends your event from a location of their choosing, you have limited control over other distractions that may reduce their attention span and divert them away from your event. As a community manager, you must discover strategies to keep attendees interested and motivated.
6 Offsite meetings provide a welcome change from routine.
Getting away to another place for a meeting or training session can be beneficial for a person’s mental and emotional well-being in firms or groups when workers spend the majority of their time at the office.
But the World Is Changing…
It’s difficult to predict what the meeting and events industry will look like in six months or a year. It will undoubtedly appear different than it did six months ago. But we’ve previously discovered that where there’s a will (to gather), there’s a way!
As you can see, hosting your events through virtual events is a method that is not only interesting but also highly flexible and robust. Whether you choose to completely replace your physical event or complement it with digital content, moving your conferences, trade exhibitions, and career fairs online can help you increase your audience reach, lower your costs, and provide your attendees some great entertainment.
In some situations, masks, social distancing, and aggressive sanitizing may be here to stay for the near future, but that doesn’t mean those who crave human connection won’t be able to find it.