With the world having changed so much from pre- to post-pandemic, it’s worth exploring whether or not people are suffering from “zoom fatigue” and if virtual events are here to stay. In the past few years, the use of virtual events has skyrocketed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s common to receive invites to attend webinars, workshops, or online training programs daily.
At the ASK Method, our virtual events manager, Jocelyn Robertson, leads all of our virtual events and has some predictions for what we can expect in 2023. We’ll be taking a closer look at the current dynamic market for virtual events and considering the potential future of this growing trend.
Prediction #1: Zoom Boom Is Here to Stay
It’s clear that the “Zoom Boom” is here to stay. Virtual events and webinars are now a common and popular way for people to consume information.
The numbers speak for themselves – in 2021 alone, there were 3.3 trillion minutes spent on Zoom and 45 billion minutes spent on Zoom webinars, based on a Zippia report. This momentum shows no signs of slowing down – with attendance and show-up rates at virtual events are actually much HIGHER than they were 18 months ago. We’re seeing people move past the “zoom fatigue” phase and become more comfortable attending virtual events. In fact, here at the ASK Method, we saw a 40% increase in event registrations and an 11% higher attendance rate at our bootcamps and webinars last year.
So what about in-person events? While there is still a perceived demand for in-person events, the reality is that attendee rates are lower, and there are more last-minute cancellations and no-shows due to high travel costs and other expenses. With event spending expected to rise by 83% in 2023 and the average cost per event being 2% higher than pre-pandemic, virtual events are rapidly looking like the better alternative in most cases.
Virtual events allow you to reach new audiences and collaborate with people from anywhere. They also eliminate the high costs of in-person events, such as venues, food, and travel expenses. As a business owner, virtual events are essential to stay at the cutting edge of digital entrepreneurship and stay ahead of the competition.
Prediction #2: Virtual Event Platforms Up their Game
As we continue to live in a world of Zoom calls and webinars, it’s only natural that the platforms hosting these events will have to up their game. Gone are the days of a simple video call – now, companies like Zoom and Webex are adding all sorts of bells and whistles to make virtual events closely mimic exciting and engaging in-person events.
From networking opportunities to gamification and even virtual greenrooms, these platforms do everything they can to bring the in-person event experience online. Business owners now have the right tools at their disposal to create truly engaging virtual events – it’s our job to take advantage of them and keep up with where the market is going.
These platforms are enhancing the look and feel of their online events with features like the addition of attendee contact information, including social media handles, to contact other attendees easily. Zoom will now have threaded chat functionality to improve collaboration and communication.
In the future, we can expect to see even more advancements to make virtual events feel like the real deal. And hey, if we can’t have the real thing, we can have the next best thing.
Prediction #3: AI, Robots, And Apps Will Take Over Virtual Events
We’re seeing more and more AI, apps, and bots being incorporated into virtual events to help facilitate communication and make a seamless experience for hosts and attendees. And let’s not forget about the mighty Zoom, which is now available in over 200 countries and has plans to expand into even more languages. This means that virtual events are no longer limited to English-speaking countries and have the potential to reach a global audience.
Imagine being able to communicate with people all over the world in real time, thanks to the magic of translation services. And the best part? These transcriptions are on par with human translations, so there’s no need to worry about miscommunications.
“We recently tested translation services directly in Zoom, where we translated an entire session into Spanish from English, and it was successful. We plan to look into doing this in the future as well,” says Jocelyn. This groundbreaking new feature will allow users to switch to real time translation.
By offering translation services, you can differentiate yourself in the marketplace and reach a wider audience. So go ahead and think outside the box (or outside your country) and consider hosting a virtual event for a global audience.
Prediction #4: The Rise of Hybrid Events
The rise of hybrid events has revolutionized the way we hold gatherings and meetings. Pre-pandemic, 18.9% of all events were already hybrid virtual gatherings, but after the pandemic hit, that number skyrocketed to 59.5%.
This shift shows just how integral a virtual component is for any event today. Hybrid events offer an immersive experience for both in-person and virtual attendees. From event branding to activities available on the platform, for hosts to be successful, they must create an unforgettable experience for their guests.
“Your digital event should be just as immersive as your in-person event. Everything from the physical space to your event branding and to your activities. And that’s what these new features on these platforms will help bring to life with Hybrid events,” says Jocelyn. Not only do hybrid events increase registration and attendance, but they can deliver higher-quality content, offer accessibility, enhanced data capturing and more*.
From now on, all virtual events are expected to become hybrid, so those who cannot attend live can still participate virtually. And those who wish to host an event without the virtual component should prepare to rationalize their decision with potential attendees.
To Sum Up…
Back in 2020, people experienced “Zoom fatigue” as the term was later coined. But, as we look at the data, it seems as though people aren’t shying away from long hours on Zoom calls or virtual events. The post-pandemic world is quickly evolving. It’s more apparent that people prefer Zoom meetings/events more now than during the pandemic.
Here at The ASK Method, we’ve seen higher registration and attendance rates for virtual events and even higher satisfaction rates. We’re seeing tech enhancing their features with improved communication functionality, networking opportunities and being able to translate sessions in real time into over 200 languages.
Now, if business owners want to keep up with what’s become standard, they’ll need to use the hybrid model. If they choose to host in-person events to cater to all audiences globally, there’s more need for traveling, expensive hotel rooms or tickets. Virtual events will be every business owner’s golden ticket to generating more revenue and building a larger, global audience.
And speaking of the hybrid model, did you know that you can run highly-profitable virtual bootcamps? In THREE days, you can generate massive income with our WINNING virtual event formula. It’s the step-by-step model we used to generate $1.8M in three days and a simple way for you to get paid TWICE…And, we’ll show you how others used our formula to successfully launch their offers!
We have an upcoming training on this topic…
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