In-person events are back, but don't forget the digitalisation case

How and why event organisers are incorporating digital elements into their events in 2023.

Event organisers are now able to capture more rich data and insight than ever before, and this can be used to enhance the in-person attendee experience.
Event organisers are now able to capture more rich data and insight than ever before, and this can be used to enhance the in-person attendee experience. Photo Credit: Adobe/metamorworks

While in-person events are gathering pace once again, industry experts debated why the need for digitisation is still key at a recent webinar entitled Events: Digital Marketing’s Next Frontier, which featured Conrad Mills, principal analyst at Forrester; McNeel Keenan, vice president of product development at Cvent; and Patrick Smith, SVP and chief marketing officer, Cvent.

Clients want to incorporate more digital interactions into their in-person events. Forrester’s Mills said that having hosted virtual events over the last two years, event organisers are now able to capture more rich data and insight than ever before. This can be used to enhance the attendee experience.

“A really simple example is something like a chatbot - by deploying it across these three event stages: pre, during and post, you can both improve the attendee experience and deliver valuable insight,” he says. “So from an attendee perspective, pre-event, you're able to provide immediate 24-by-7 support to your audience, you're able to personalise how they engage on a landing page and also reduce friction when they’re registering for the event.”

Use virtual tech to engage with attendees at every phase of the event lifecycle. Every action can be digital. Instead of sending a 'Know before you go' email or a reminder to build your event schedule, contact delegates via a live stream instead, the panel suggested. This could take the form of ‘30 minutes on everything you need to know', 'here are the key ways you can connect with other attendees' or 'If you're a first time attendee, here are three top tips’.

Make your call to action as simple as possible. Sometimes the best CTA after an event is simply signing up for the next one. "We've enabled this inside our attendee hub, we allow our customers to promote their future events,” said Cvent’s Keena. “You might want to attend that session because three of your connections are attending. The point is, these connections aren't things that are built in a single event and then dropped and started again at a new event. Instead, we remember the connections and they last across your entire event programme.”



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