Business Trends: 6 Important Things You Need To Know About Online Events
Ever since the pandemic started in 2020, we’ve been experiencing major changes in our work environment. We became isolated with no means of physical meetings, so we had to make the best out of this digital age and use technology. Soon enough, online events and virtual meetings became second nature and the cornerstones of our work.
Although there is a lot of talk about returning to the office on a full or part-time basis, the trend of online events is still going strong in 2022. In fact, around 93% of marketers declare that they’ll be investing more in online events starting the next quarter.
Moreover, studies show that online events attract a bigger audience, where 54% of the registrants actually end up attending the event. You can’t miss out on this epic rate of conversion if you want to scale up your business and attract new audiences.
In this article, we’re going to introduce you to everything you need to know about the business trends in online events. Let’s get started!
6 Important Virtual Event Trends to Know
There are a lot of emerging trends in the world of online events, so how can you know the ones to follow? Surely, you don’t have the time or resources to try every trend and see which one works.
That’s why it’s better to follow the tried-and-proven trends to be sure you’re making the most of this golden opportunity. That said, here are six of the most important virtual event trends to know and follow.
#1. Utilizing the Accessibility of Data
We’ve been hearing about the power of data for quite a while, but perhaps it was during the pandemic that the majority of the public found out just how necessary data was for the first time. We faced an overload of information and became overwhelmed with the statistics to an extent that we couldn’t make head nor tail of the situation.
The only thing that helped us comprehend the data we received was the infographics that visually represented this data. That’s an advantage of data analysis and visualization applications, one we’ve all become familiar with.
Similarly, the events you’ll be hosting online will provide you with a mine of valuable information waiting to be sorted and analyzed. The data you mine will help you create a better experience for your audience, but it can also be shared with your audience for various purposes.
#2. Creating Interactive Content
One of the greatest advantages of in-person events was the ability to interact with like-minded people and grow your network. Unfortunately, most online events provide no chance for networking; generally attendees do nothing but sit and listen to the host for hours on end.
More interactive virtual events host a panel discussion between more than one speaker, but what about the attendees? If you truly wish to win over your audience, you’d better do something to engage with them.
Create a breakout session, open a live Q&A session, throw quizzes or live polls, and most importantly, ask for their opinions and listen to what they have to say.
#3. Personalizing Attendee Experience
If you’re willing to go the extra mile to create an interactive event, it wouldn’t hurt to walk a few extra steps to personalize the experience. You’ll need to choose a virtual event software program that supports personalization, which can help your brands in multiple ways.
For starters, it’s a great way to win the favor of your audience and make them feel appreciated. It also gives you better tools to track the behavior of everyone in your audience, which you can later use to curate your content and optimize your products.
#4. Introducing the Concept of Gamification
Speaking of personalization, there’s nothing that can make it stand out like coupling it with gamification. You’re definitely already familiar with the concept of gamification, where hosts integrate game-like systems to increase the level of engagement.
As such, the attendees play games, complete quests, collect points, brag about their performance, and use their credit to gain benefits from your business.
However, you’ll need to put a good amount of thought into the prizes you provide to lure your audience into participating. The prizes don’t have to be costly, but they have to be cool enough to encourage engagement.
#5. Providing Valuable and Educative Content
Virtually, anyone can create an online event and invite attendees. If you’re good at marketing, you can attract hundreds or even thousands of participants. However, the real measure of success is not the number of attendees, it’s the satisfaction rate.
You should be asking how many of the attendees are likely to return for another event. One of the ways to ensure the number remains high is to ensure the quality of the content you provide. If you provide value, your audience will be looking forward to the next event.
And, if you’re looking for the most valuable kind of content, you shouldn’t look any further than educational content that adds skills, knowledge, inspiration, or all of the above.
#6. Delivering Hybrid Content
Now that we’re almost two years into the pandemic, it’s safe to say we’ve all experienced the major benefits of hosting online events. Nothing could match the convenience, accessibility, and safety of those virtual meet-ups.
It’s almost sad to know we’re going back to the office and won’t host any more online events, but who said you wouldn’t? In fact, going hybrid is the next big trend in virtual event games. Statistics show that over 68% of companies plan on hosting hybrid events.
In a world where everyone is trying to benefit from the advantages of both in-person and virtual events, why should you let anyone beat you in the competition?
Online events may have started as an urgent and alternative disaster-relief measure, but they’ve now become essential to businesses of all kinds and sizes. Even if we return to the office, continuing with hybrid events can be the ultimate way to run a successful, interactive, and cost-effective event.
However, if you really want to blow the minds of your audience, you need to stay on top of the business trends and up your game in the online events arena.