Reinventing “The Venue Of The Future” As Coronavirus Decimates Conferences

Blog, Keynote Speaker, Podcast

Over the last 10 days, we’ve seen massive events such as Facebook’s F8, Mobile World Congress, IBM Think, and Oracle ModernCX announce that they were canceling their global conferences in the wake of the coronavirus epidemic.

This epidemic is having a global impact and closer to home its decimating the meetings industry, and the question we have to start asking is how should planners, brand marketers, and professional speakers be thinking about the future of live events? 

Now in context, this disruption is minor compared to those dealing with family members getting sick or dying thanks to this coronavirus, and our thoughts go out to them. 

In this episode, I’m joined by a good friend and fellow speaker Erin King who happened to have spent a decade in live event digital marketing. We discuss the epidemic impact on our industries, but more so, the digital OPPORTUNITIES are presenting themselves for both keynote speakers and event planners. 

There’s no right way or one-way to handle this forced change, and we’ve seen some events announce that they will be moving to a “global first digital event,” while others have postponed the event till 2021.  

Erin and I have both spent years in this industry, both planning backstage AND performing onstage. From this unique perspective, in this episode, we share our predictions, recommendation, and ideas around: 

  • How agile planners, marketers, and speakers can re-invent the venue and capitalize on what is actually an exciting opportunity 
  • Why only streaming a keynote via webinar is not a good enough alternative to live  
  • How production schedules can get more creative, immersive and interactive to deliver more compelling experiences for remote audiences 
  • How the roles of event production teams will have to evolve with this “new normal” of experiential 
  • How to elevate your internal budget and planning discussions from “which functionality” to “what type of format” 
  • Why in tumultuous times, organizations need education, inspiration, and motivation more than ever, regardless of the medium used to deliver it 
  • What we believe is the number 1 shift that must occur in the content & format of digital events to “re-invent the venue” and embrace the non-captured attention of a digital attendee.
  • Why & how almost EVERY digital platform & software has gotten online conferences wrong.
  • Why we, like speakers and event planners, must coordinate and collaborate on an audience-first approach to supplement what sponsors, attendees, and executives are now missing.
  • Why the future is bright, and digital opportunities are endless

Now let’s be real; there’s a reason digital events haven’t replaced offline conferences over the last 10 years as nothing will 100% replace the handshake and in-person networking experience.  

But both Erin and I believe that this is going to spark a NEW approach to digital events that have been long overdue. In the past, let’s face it digital events we’re just back to back webinars labeled as “online conference” or a brand live streaming the audio of speakers online and calling that a digital summit.

There will be much more to come on this topic, and some details will be shared soon on the offerings and exact plans Erin and I have in the works to help facilitate these ideas that we discuss on the show.

In the meantime pick up Erin’s book and give her a follow on social media

Erin King is Founder of Socialite Agency, a firm specializing in digital communication for live events like The Oscars and others. After spending a decade as a live event digital marketer, she transitioned full-time onto the professional speaking circuit with the publication of her Amazon best-selling book, “Digital Persuasion.”

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