The benefit of holding virtual events

The COVID-19 pandemic ushered in new ways of doing business and hosting events.

With no choice due to lockdowns and restrictions on gatherings, many events – from conferences to award galas and everything in between – moved online. And while some events are starting to return to an in-person, or hybrid, format there are still many benefits to holding events virtually.

Increased attendance

According to some, attendance at virtual events can be between five and 10 times higher than at a face-to-face event. And when you remove the need to travel, people from all over the world can attend an event from the comfort of their homes. If the goal is to expand a business’s reach, holding an online event makes it easier to make connections with colleagues and customers around the globe.

It is important to try to make a virtual event as realistic as possible and give people a chance to make a human connection, even if it’s through a computer screen. Hold a Q&A session where attendees can ask questions, including an informal virtual networking component, or hold smaller breakout sessions where participants can interact with each other and hosts.

Save money and the environment

According to Aventri, an event management company, virtual events cost about 75% less than their in-person counterparts. Costs are significantly reduced when organizers don’t have to cover the cost of a venue, staffing, accommodations, food, setup and takedown. While organizers will likely have to pay for the virtual event platform, event marketing and promotion, it is still much less costly than hosting an in-person event.

Virtual events are also much more eco-friendly. Attendees don’t have to travel to attend your event, saving on fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, and there’s no waste – like water bottles and disposable coffee cups – leftover after the event.

More flexibility

Virtual events are extremely flexible and a highly effective way to deliver content to an audience. An online event can be live and interactive, or on-demand so it is available to attendees anytime, anyplace. Live events can even be recorded and posted so attendees can access the content and share it with teammates and colleagues.

According to Miller Tanner Associates, a corporate planning and management service provider, virtual events offer unprecedented reach and access to bringing content to an organization’s audience.

Collecting data and feedback is easier

Since everything is done online when hosting a virtual event, it’s much easier to track attendee activity – who attended the event and where are they from. Many platforms allow organizers to track leads, measure event performance and gauge an event’s ROI. All this data can help with tailoring post-event follow-up and providing a customized experience for attendees. As many organizations and businesses look to return to in-person events as the situation with the COVID-19 pandemic allows, there are still many benefits to holding events online.

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