How is Corona impacting the events sector?
Coronavirus has already created a huge impact on the event industry. It started with strict health measures and rules to minimize the health risk of event attendees. Now, many of the events, from conferences to musical festivals, are being cancelled or postponed in order to stop the spread of coronavirus and ensure the health of attendees.
How can technology help?
This challenging situation can be solved by moving the events into the digital world with the help of technologies. Organizing online events, live streaming conferences, offering mobile apps and other virtual tools can be a good option now.
Of course, it may not create the same feeling as a live event, which rises from personal communication and live experience. However, these technologies can minimize the impact of any of these dramatic situations for all parties involved. Digital solutions have other beneﬁts as well:
Easily accessible by other people
Only laptop and internet connection is needed to participate in the event. This format will also motivate people to stay at home and it can attract more visitors than a live event would do.
The sustainability aspect is also covered by virtual events. Your participants do not need to travel; hence, they create less emissions and less waste.
You can create a unique engagement with your participant and deliver personalized content. In addition, the live streaming of your event can be recorded and further distributed after the event. People who were not able to attend the live event, can participate now. These can be due to travel restrictions, need for childcare etc.
Alternative event formats and useful technology
Technology can definitely help you with still reaching your target group. Thanks to the ongoing advances in it, setting up virtual events like meetings and webinars isn’t a problem anymore and your participants can take part in it without the need to travel far or leave their ofﬁce or home at all. You can choose between different types of virtual event formats and technology and they all offer some beneﬁts.
Effective and widely used – a good method is hosting your online event through a live stream. Your speakers, event panels, sessions and other activities can still take place and offer a value for your participants. You can even make them work together on case studies or host a discussion round – nearly everything is possible when you use your creativity in the planning process.
There are plenty of useful apps and websites you can use for your live stream, including Periscope, YouTube Live, Twitch (normally mostly used for gaming content, many teachers now use it to educate their students in an engaging way) and more. Make sure to record your virtual event so people can watch it at their convenience.
Mobile Event Apps and Technology
A great way to connect to your participants is through event apps. They help to provide awareness for the event schedule and connect attendees and speakers with each other. Marathons are already using apps to do virtual runs instead of simply cancelling the whole event. People can sign up for it, run the distance whenever and whenever they want and get recognition through leaderboards and rewards like digital medals.
You can also use our EventKit and our Engagement Widget to stay in touch with your target group. Event organizers can digitally activate their exhibitors, partners and sponsors with a wide range of functionalities, significantly maximize their ROI and improve visibility.
Life must go on and so do meetings. But what to do in times where it’s not that easy to meet in person? Host an entirely virtual meeting! Of course, there may be technical difﬁculties and it takes more effort to set it up, but it can be a great way to still achieve your goals and connect with your participants. It’s also cost-effective and eco-friendly.
How to make the shift to a virtual event
How big the need and acceptance for virtual events is shown in the case of the Bath Half Marathon in London. Nearly a thousand runners boycotted the event and went virtual instead, because the organizer didn’t want to postpone or cancel it. But what should you look after when making the shift to a virtual event?
- Communicate that you’ve been monitoring the COVID-19 situation closely and that your decision is in the best interest of your attendees, partners, speakers and exhibitors.
Record your virtual event
Make sure to record your virtual event – all speakers, panels etc included. Use the recordings to provide content and give people the opportunity to watch it after it happened to get even more out of it.