Marketing conferences and events after Covid19: What to consider from Marketing to Technology?

After this pandemic as we all try to go back to school, work, social activities, and events, many will be trapped in previous mindsets. The fear of acquiring a virus or some sort of health issue will be of common concern.

For event and conference organizers, this will take more than just sales and marketing strategies to get past these issues. This will require an appealing public relation that would not only focus on how to get people to attend your event but also making sure that their safety is your priority. How do you really encourage people to attend live events when their appetite to attending social gatherings have decreased? And though we are still dealing with current issues and aftermath, here are some key marketing, engagement, and technology options to consider:

How to get people to go to your meetings and making them feel secure:

  1. Ensure the facility has cleaning policies that you can share.
  2. Social distancing and reduction of crowds as a policy for sharing.
  3. Temperature sensing equipment. Yes, keeping sick people out but its also a sign of security and reassurance as anything.

Meetings and Moving forward

  1. Dedicated and proactive communication – Transparency not only shows that your organization is well-prepared it also helps your audience to be more loyal to attending the event. Consistent messaging can provide assurance that you are still in control of your event despite still being in the process of coordinating your recovery plan. Ensure you update your audience through Social media channels and other messaging options.
    1. Consider using the power of social media channels. With over 3.8 billion social media users around the globe.
    2. Utilize the power of feedback and testimonials. As per Status Labs’ research, know that 85% of consumers will trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations
    3. Let your previous attendees, sponsors, or exhibitors do the talking for you as they help encourage new organizations/individuals to join.
  1. Providing and Performing online or hybrid events
    1. Online events – Online or virtual events allow both attendees and organizers to reduce any possible health risks. As well you can acquire more attendees and have a broader reach.
      1. Promotion through different means – social, text, emails or via any other interpersonal communications.
      2. You can still drive sponsors with the right technology you can have ads and sponsor-based promotion opportunities
    2. Hybrid events – we see as an increasing opportunity for meeting areas and planners. Reducing the number of people allowed to attend the meeting, or understanding it will be diminished either way.  Provide options for on-site and virtual.
      1. Limit the meeting to hosts, speakers and key members of value and content portion of the event
      2. Provide full-length normal settings to drive facility and connect audiences to attendees online

Both Online and Hybrid events provide tons of pros and cons.  Here is a quick list to help you think this through and find the right mix for your event:

  1. Lessened cost – can save venue rental, electricity, and other commodities that will be present on an actual event. Focus normal paper costs to online advertising or the overall reduction.
  2. Broader audience scope. Ability to reach people from all around the globe. Have more people know more about your industry despite sitting in a different time zone. Utilize different media channels in promoting your event.
  3. Easier analytics – can be considered for tracking, sponsorships options, feedback, reviews, and more.
  4. Test the technology to provide things like virtual marketplace, demos of new products, and services to drive value.
  5. Opportunity to talk with your sponsors and technical teams to see how using this technology can actually help drive more traffic to their sites, increased audience opportunity and ways to keep them plugged into the industry.
  6. Higher risk of technical issues – may occur on both the host and attendees. This may pose a risk in possible refund requests.
  7. Consider bandwidth and places you have your meetings. This is a real good reason to have the hybrid event where you can utilize hotel or meeting locations for their network and high availability bandwidth.
  8. Security using secure networks ensure people feel safe with sharing information and even at times purchasing or engaging think through the complete transaction model
  9. Consider postponement or cancellation – If all else fails and your organization cannot proceed with the event, you might as well consider canceling or postponing the actual conference. Take into consideration your event’s topic: Is it sensitive or does it require a quick turn-around time? Carefully deliberate your past event’s performances and decide whether you need to pivot from continuing, taking the risk of canceling or just postponing for the next couple of months

A quick overview of technology to consider:

  • Use online marketing tools and lead gen to get your meeting out to a more expanded market
  • Review different meeting platforms, Microsoft Teams, Zoom, and Google all offer options.
  • Look at enterprise solutions, our OmniPlatform and others have virtual communication options for the entire meeting, visitor and guest experience.
  • Use mobile solutions such as PWA” s and native mobile apps to provide easy ways for attendees to connect securely and provide options for remote engagement
  • Sharing, use YouTube, Dropbox or other channels to host and share all your meeting recordings, allow feedback and reviews to continue to shape your content

Indeed, Coronavirus pandemic has changed our lives forever. Living the ‘New Normal’ is something that we all need to be accustomed to. It has opened our eyes to some overlooked, positive thoughts: That we are all innately interconnected to each other as we manifest interdependency during these times. And that technology, as we all take for granted, is now showing its real reliability and advancement by making things truly convenient.

At OmniExperience, we are focused on providing new ways of engagement in the industries we serve.   From thermal scanning devices and kiosks, to mobile and digital signage, we can help you build a plan for your facility, meeting area, attractions etc.  Included in our solutions are over 50 modules built for virtual, interactive and mobile communication we would love to share with you what we have learned and help in any way we can as we all focus on getting back to business.

https://www.cvent.com/en/blog/hospitality/safe-meetings-events

https://www.citmagazine.com/article/1678668/5-ways-events-will-change-coronavirus