March 25, 2021
34% of planners consider increased attendance the top benefit of pivoting to virtual, followed by lower overhead costs at 27% (EventMB).
TWO - About Attendance...
Only half of virtual event registrants actually attend the event (Bizzabo). In a related statistic, Intrado found that 43% of registrants attend live while 13% attend on demand. And 88% of respondents to a SmartCompany survey said they’ve left a virtual event early.
Engagement is a top challenge: 63% of organizers say audience engagement is their top concern followed by budgets (EventMB). Bizzabo found that engagement is second only to networking as the biggest challenge for organizers (67.7% vs. 68.8%). More challenges reported in other surveys and reports include lack of experience (tech platform knowledge, learning new skills, etc.), producing high-quality virtual content, demonstrating ROI, reduced budgets and staff, and differentiation.
57% of trade show visitors believe they can conduct the majority of their event objectives online, compared to 43% of exhibitors. 65% of attendees and 57% of exhibitors said they expect digital event tech to still have utility after the pandemic (Reed).
Virtual can reduce total climate pollution from events by 60-98% (Eventcellany). This is important, as corporations in particular re-evaluate their meeting policies with an eye to sustainability
80% of virtual events are free but pricing is going up as both planners and attendees recognize the value of digital content and engagement (Bizzabo).
51% of attendees say their manager is very supportive of attending virtual events (Splash).
EIGHT - When will in-person events return?
45% of event planners expect meeting size to return to pre-pandemic levels in 2023 (Knowland). 55% of event professionals site safety concerns as the most important obstacle to planning in-person events, followed by travel limitations and the viability of low-capacity events (EventMB).
NINE - Hybrid?
71% of event professionals say they’ll continue to incorporate digital when live events return (EventMB). In a Splash survey, 29% of respondents said that when in person meetings resume they’ll be hybrid with both virtual and in-person components.
TEN - Lasting changes
The percentage of workers permanently working from home is expected to double in 2021 (ETR). By 2025, an estimated 70% of the workforce will work remotely at least 5 days out of the month (Lister). 80% of people surveyed by Fast Company said they’d continue wearing masks after the pandemic if recommended by public health officials, while 39% said they’d simply wear a mask more often than before. 54% said they’d be happy to never shake someone’s hand again, and 40% said they want to resume business travel less often or never again following the pandemic (Fast Company).