The Future of Conferences

The Future of Conferences: Will Events Remain Virtual in 2021?

2020 decimated the conference industry. Massive industry and consumer conferences, including CES, Disney’s D23, and more, all canceled their 2020 line-up.

And, as we near the end of the calendar year, many events professionals are wondering, “Will we still be hosting virtual events in 2021?”

While no one can truly predict the outcome of the coronavirus pandemic, many organizations are already canceling their 2021 in favor of a virtual event option with CES and Disney leading the charge.

With 2021 conference cancelations happening left and right, it’s important to understand why this is happening and what your organization can do moving forward.

Three Main Reasons Why 2021 Conferences Are Being Canceled

Aside from the general uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 crisis, businesses are canceling their 2021 events for these key reasons:

1. Large Crowd Sizes

Many states around the country are still upholding restrictions on crowd sizes. This immediately limits gigantic industry conferences with thousands of attendees.

2. Lower Attendance Rates

Even if in-person events are allowed to happen in a particular region, most individuals will be wary of attending such an event. Few people are interested in going to conference happy hours or roaming tightly organized conference halls with thousands of people they don’t know.

3. Smaller Event Budgets

As a result of the anxiety and uncertainty surrounding in-person events, 57% of event professionals believe their budgets for 2021 will decrease significantly. And, with few sponsors looking to align their brands with in-person events that can cause the spread of a global virus, event marketers must be strategic about how they spend their 2021 budget.

The Solution? Virtual Events.

To combat the losses caused by the pandemic, the events industry is rapidly pivoting to embrace virtual events. From live-streaming panel discussions with industry and topic experts to on-demand webinars and webcasts, the options are limitless when a conference becomes virtual.

Not only do virtual events solve the problem of hosting an event in the midst of a pandemic, but they also:

  • Offer a scalable solution for organizations: Virtual events are perfect for small company sessions and large industry events. The technology scales to meet and exceed the needs of every size event.
  • Budget-friendly: Rather than spending money on decor, overhead, and equipment, companies can maximize their budget by investing in secure webcast technology, hiring the best speakers, and promoting their event online.
  • Removes previous barriers to entry: By eliminating the hefty price tag and location barriers, companies that embrace virtual events find their attendance rates improve as more people can join in from all over the world.

Instead of canceling your 2021 conference, make the switch to a virtual event. You’ll be happy you did.

About Jamison B.

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