Live events will return, that we’re sure of. When? Who knows. Will they look the same, pre-COVID? Probably not.
Welcoming back live events will not be easy. After losing millions due to cancelled events, venues need to look at what is needed to welcome back in-person events. Rooms may need to be reconfigured for social distancing, and cleaning protocols must be followed.
Now, another thing to consider – hybrid events. While many attendees may be eager to return to live events, many will not, for a variety of reasons. Meeting planners still want to make their content, and overall conference experience, available to a wider audience.
Convention centers, and hotels, are already heading in the right direction: building broadcast studios, upgrading technology and making other related improvements.
Digital Publishing Increases ROI
One key to creating a successful hybrid event is making your virtual attendees. Streaming broadcasts from the venue’s studio is a great first step in creating original and exclusive content for this important group:
- Invite speakers for a post-session Q&A, and encourage virtual attendees to submit their questions.
- Don’t forget your exhibitors: invite them to participate in panels, discuss new products or summarize content from an on-site event
- Take them on a tour of the book store
- Set themes for a tours of the exhibit hall, i.e. new products, top tier exhibitors, new exhibitors, etc.
Digital Publishing Generates Revenue
Once a plan is developed for the hybrid component of an event, we hope you’ll look at ways to both connect attendees and exhibitors while also creating a new revenue stream.
- Create a daily digital publication for your virtual audience – remind them about programming schedules, highlights, etc.
- Include exclusive content.
- Feature virtual attendee profiles.
- Spotlight exhibitors
- Create advertising opportunities in this publication, and a corresponding email newsletter.