Event management Events for the future
The long crisis in the event industry appears to be coming to an end. Over the past 15 months, events have taken place only with a limited number of people or in digital format. What does this mean for the future of conferences, trade fairs and events? Will digital and hybrid concepts stick around or will we go back to the full, live experience?
In general, the digitization of the event industry was already on the radar before the pandemic struck. Hybrid or digital events had already been discussed, tested and implemented many times – the coronavirus just accelerated this process. But I don’t believe that purely digital events will completely replace live events.
The desire for human contact, team spirit or personal exchange with customers and partners is simply too strong. But that doesn’t mean shutting ourselves off from digital developments. In future, it will be vital to get the balance right.
There are many new and smart solutions that enable creative concepts and ideas, simplify organization and execution, and engage the audience. Digitization also has benefits for the environment. For example, external or foreign speakers can be brought in digitally. And hybrid implementation increases the size of the audience. This makes it easier to fit events into some people’s busy schedules. We don’t have to stop networking, as the digital world now offers a whole range of tools for this purpose.
The same applies to hybrid events: information needs to be communicated in an interesting way. The digital space also needs to provide emotion and exciting experiences.
The coronavirus crisis as an opportunity for event organizers
The coronavirus crisis gives event specialists the opportunity to showcase their strengths. They can be flexible, agile and creative, test different formats, and try innovative approaches. This means they must make the effort to learn about the latest technical options in order to provide customers with specific advice.
It is quite possible that people will attend fewer events in future, and will therefore be more picky about choosing the ones they do attend. More than ever, future events – whether digital, analogue or hybrid– must target customers, create unforgettable moments, and promote the lively exchange of ideas.
I’m sure we event specialists will still be around in 10 years’ time. The format (digital, hybrid or live) doesn’t matter. Creative thinkers and professional organizers will still be needed. I’m really looking forward to live events again. Because no stream can replace direct, face-to-face contact and shared experience. So I’ll see you soon for the next farewell drink.
Due to the current situation, Connecta Bern will again be held as a digital event in 2021. Connecta is renowned for shining a light on the diverse nature of digitization and this year will be no different with content presented across the three formats of Connecta Blog, Connecta TV and Connecta Talk. Find out more here: www.swisspost.ch/connecta.
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