Virtual Event in 2020 – Advantages and Drawbacks
Due to the pandemic, businesses have experienced major changes in the way they do their job this year. Conferences that were a comprising part of many businesses, are now on hold.
However, virtual events can substitute for real-life conferences and presentations but they have both advantages and drawbacks, just as everything else. Knowing what they are will help an entrepreneur what to expect from it and how to prepare for it.
1. Lower cost
Of course, online conferences cost much less than regular conferences. There is no need to rent a venue, pay for catering and transportation, and many other minor necessities. Plus, it's not necessary to rent a room in a hotel and to travel to the location.
2. Attracting a wider variety of attendees
When hosting a real-life conference, you are always limited by the venue and the number of attendees. Also, some people interested in the conference may give up due to the great distance between their homes and the venue.
A virtual event doesn't have these constraints, making it possible for various and numerous people to attend it.
3. More data
A virtual event can gather much more data than a real-life event. This is very important for today's world, where everything is about information. Also, the attendees are free to check-in and out at any point of the conference, which they cannot do at a regular conference.
4. Wider range of speakers and hosts
Just like attendees, speakers, and hosts are limited by their geographical location and schedule. However, a virtual event allows them to participate from the comfort of their home. This makes it easier for the organizer of the virtual event to get the speakers and hosts they want. And it also allows for a higher number of speakers to participate.
The speakers can even record their content so that it can be played at the conference at any time. Plus, it will cut costs because the speaker doesn't have to get paid to travel.
5. Easier scheduling
Offline conferences usually have problems with scheduling, and attendees sometimes wish to attend two conferences that are happening at the same time. Online events remove this obstacle because any attendee can simply watch the recording from all the lectures.
6. Simpler setup
Offline conferences are often very stressful to set up due to many unforeseeable problems and lots of compromising factors. However, there is very little stress with virtual conferences, especially if you turn to professionals like Veritas Events. Companies like these not only make everything work from the technical aspect but they also offer ideas on how to make your conference more appealing.
7. Duration is not an issue
Offline conferences can last only for a few days but virtual conferences last indefinitely, as they can be recorded, played and watched whenever. This enables you to host more sessions and deliver much more content because you are not time-constrained.
While at a real-life conference, the audience is truly present because they can't really surf the internet or check out their Instagram profiles. In other words, you don't have to work very hard to keep their attention.
However, when attending virtual events, people get distracted easily because no one can see what they are doing behind their computers. If your lecture is not appealing and powerful enough, they will lose interest easily. In other words, you need to work harder on your presentation.
2. Fail to attend is more often
When people pay to attend a physical event, they then make specific plans so that they are able to really attend it - they make travel plans and book a hotel room. This prevents them from giving up on the conference when the time comes.
However, it's easier to forget to attend a virtual event because all you had to do is to sign in at a certain time on a certain date. And it's easier to make something else a priority when the day comes.
3. Harder networking
Networking opportunities are one of the major benefits of an offline conference. People get the chance to meet someone with whom they like to network. Many spontaneous business relationships were created this way.
With virtual events, people miss this opportunity by simply having to sit at their own homes during the conference.
4. Less merchandise
Many attendees at offline conferences find merchandise very fun and attractive. Plus, it can also be used to raise profit for that same conference/event.
However, virtual events don't offer that much excitement when it comes to buying T-shirts, mugs, and other items. What's more, many virtual event hosts decide not to offer custom merchandise during the event.
As most of the things have been transferred online these days due to the pandemic, there is much more online competition. It's very hard to attract somebody's attention with so many things happening at the same time online. Every business is organizing a virtual conference so it's difficult to stand out.
Obviously, a virtual event has many advantages for a business. When we add the fact that these days offline conferences are no option at all, it's easier to overlook the drawbacks. After all, you can do your best to minimize those drawbacks and make the best of the advantages.