From virtual happy hours to new employee onboarding, the celebration of birthdays, shareholder meetings, and other events – nearly every event is missed in the process of the digitalization of their events. Most people have memories of different experiences from only a few of these situations.
For the majority of the past year, the majority of our communications and personal interactions have been conducted online. Therefore, it's not surprising that so many people are eager to get back to real-life interactions, and that is true for events too. What does this mean to events that both virtual and in-person events are important?
Are virtual events the same as in-person events, or are there in-person and virtual events?Since virtual events have become the most popular and sometimes sole format for events in the past year, people have been asking what it means for events held in person since some have suggested that it is best to always choose events that are in person. However, this is no longer feasible. For many, it's been a matter of live occasions versus virtual ones.
For starters, it's not about in-person events as opposed to virtual events. In-person events offer a benefit and opportunity that cannot entirely be duplicated through virtual. It's human interaction and spontaneity due to being physically located in the same place. However, virtual events offer new ways to accommodate the needs of a digitally more aligned world while also adjusting to rising costs, the globalization process, and the emergence of new ways of doing business.
In truth, no type of event will ever get back to the way we had before 2020. The way we define events has forever changed. Very soon, if not already, they will not be defined through their media, only by their experiences and the content.
We all want to get back in person, but a single medium isn't any longer the best. Virtual events allow companies to interact with their customers, employees, employees, industry partners, prospects, and all over the world frequently.
Technology has the ability to eliminate any limitations that are encountered during in-person events. Online events have now become vital, and those who take advantage of these will continue to expand. The benefits of remote and virtually organizing events outweigh the perceived negatives. It's true that often they're perceived as - disadvantages.
In-person events will come back, while virtual events will not be a thing?In the United States, 50% of the respondents to a nationwide survey indicated that they are willing to go back to live events that have proper safety measures like Covid-19. A large majority of planners plan to integrate the virtual event into their strategies for 2022 as well. It's likely that neither event format is changing. However, the frequency with how they're utilized will change.
As the audience is growing more and more dispersed, online provides a solution that is available to everyoneWe all want human contact; it's not the sole element that defines an event that is successful and meaningful. As companies create unique and distinctive virtual experiences, guests and hosts don't have to worry about the logistics, travel, and financial costs of attending events in person. With no limitations on attendance, opportunities for attendees, as well as brands, have grown. Virtual event platforms give attendees a choice that was previously not an alternative.
Communities and experiences are created through experiencesIn the past year, business leaders have become incredibly proficient at creating experiences since we've been online almost exclusively. In the future, we'll be sure that we don't wish to live life online. But the benefit to companies who are adopting new ways of doing business and establishing online communities and channels to connect, inform and engage with customers will be a huge advantage going forward.
Brands are producing highly-produced videos, which after an event, can be accessed online and used by brands and industries for marketing, sales, and education. The value gained from the ongoing use of video content created from virtual events cannot be overstated.
Redefining expectationsThe way we interact and network is changing forever through online event venues that enable users to connect regardless of location or time. The benefit of virtual events is more than traditional events in person. As a majority of people attend virtual events for educational motives, the second most significant reason for people to join is networking.
One of the most serious flaws with digital events is that they cannot create the same experiences as in-person events. Perhaps a little absurd, but isn't it? The experience of driving cars isn't as good as flying on an airplane. While both could bring you to the exact location, the experience expectations, the medium, and the experience are quite different, and that's not surprising.
The aim of virtual gatherings isn't just to duplicate an event's original form; instead, it's to create a virtual experience that shares the same goal and meets the objectives established. It's perfectly acceptable that virtual and remote events don't have the ability to recreate the experience of live events. It's not a medium issue. It's an expectation and experience issue.
Technology and innovation in the creation of new events are expected to remain a constant source of communication innovation beyond those traditional, four-wall events held in person venues. If you try to recreate an event in person, online is a sure chance to not succeed.
The concept of the events they take place in, their venues, and the way they are carried out are evolving to create something entirely new. As technology and the way we conduct ourselves change and evolve, expectations of what's required to communicate, connect and educate are also changing. Then, the main task left is to choose the right virtual event platform. Change is frightening, which is the reason that it was necessary for a pandemic outbreak to transform the industry of events and, in turn, create virtual events.
One thing we've all learned over the past year, despite Zoom fatigue and technical glitches, is the belief that we'll take part in more events since we're able to watch the events later. It is possible to meet more people and learn from them because time and location aren't a problem. We can also decide not to attend events in person since our schedules do not permit it. However, we still have the option of attending, as the technology of tomorrow will allow attendees to connect remotely, regardless of the circumstances. This is a huge victory for virtual events.
The most powerful aspect of virtual is that the limitations or conflicts commonly major obstacles to events in person have been removed, and channels that allow people to communicate, connect and interact are now more easily accessible. The future is now live and remote, and connected.