Don't cancel. Make it Digital
Updated: Jul 6
The current Coronavirus crisis is having a major impact on the event industry across the world. Events are getting cancelled at an alarming rate and this will impact on all aspects of the industry from Congress Centres to Catering and this crisis will have an impact for the next few months at least. Unfortunately, many companies involved in the industry are likely to go to the wall as their cash runs out.
So what are the options?
Meetings do not need to be cancelled. They just need to be approached from a different view point. Technology today allows for meeting to be virtual. Your choice to attend is up to you but you can also attend from the comfort of your own home or place of work.
Before the Coronavirus outbreak, streaming your conference allowed participants to attend virtually, meaning that it increased accessibility for those who found it difficult to travel, whether because of financial issues, work and family commitments or health issues. While it can’t compare to being there in person, it’s a great alternative to missing out altogether!
Meetings do not need to be cancelled. They just need to be approached from a different view point.
Your event doesn’t have to be an all or nothing scenario. We suggest that an event like a conference will be most successful if it allows for both in-person and virtual attendance.
You may have believed offering virtual attendance at your event would hurt your in-person attendance rates. This however, isn’t so. The virtual audience is a different market of attendees. Many would never have attended the physical event, to begin with. Getting a taste of an event virtually is like dipping a toe in the water, inspiring in-person attendance in future. The current crisis may reduce the numbers that show up at the venue but with a virtual audience the number of overall ‘attendees’ may be the same or higher.
The most important part of planning a virtual or hybrid event is to allow virtual attendees not just to watch, but to interact with others. A digital hangout is ideally created so that participants, speakers and virtual audiences can engage each other at any time during the event. With the ability to access the hangout right from their device, you give participants the freedom to network at will.
Reaching a greater audience and making your event even more engaging at the same time. It’s certainly a win/win situation.
Did you know that paid attendance via live streaming can be a revenue model for generating more profit? Increasing the size of your virtual audience is far less costly than that of your physical audience. After all, the venue size or catering doesn’t come into play for virtual attendees. That means, you can live stream to more attendees for very little or no extra cost, dramatically increasing profits. What’s more, that profit can be used to improve your event for your physical attendees. It’s certainly a win/win situation, reaching a greater audience and making your event even more engaging at the same time, without tapping into your budget.
Adobe, the computer software company have recently cancelled their annual live summit because of the growing concerns of coronavirus. Instead, the entire event will take place online.
Even with Coronavirus dominating the media headlines, do you really need to cancel your event or do you need to create an option for your audience who may be thinking twice about attending. You have booked the venue already so why not use it.
Ground:zero are very proficient in this area of events. Most of our meetings have cameras as part of the proposal. Many clients either want to deliver their events live to a virtual audience or they want to record the presentations so they can be viewed on-line at a later date.
So, don’t let the Coronavirus cause your event to be cancelled. You have put too much into it already. Just offer the virtual alternative and you’ll be surprised at the attendance rate