Online meeting platforms such as Zoom, Skype, Teams, BigBlueButton and Google Hangouts are experiencing the greatest success since their market launch. Many companies profit from the rapid development. Internal company meetings are taking place here and many companies, event agencies and trade fairs are moving their events for customers and co. completely into a virtual world. Will online events be the future of the event industry? And what challenges will event managers and companies face in the future? And what does this mean for corresponding live entertainment concepts? Do online events have a chance?
A look into the future by live entertainment expert Stefan Lohmann
What are the requirements for online events and live streaming events?
Virtual corporate events, live streaming and trade fairs require a good infrastructure, bandwidth and the appropriate technical requirements. Specialist Jens Krause of JKR-EVENTS reveals in the interview which ones have to be fulfilled concretely. It also makes clear what has to be observed for different online events.
Understanding the corona crisis as an opportunity – Rethinking event formats
It is certain that no live events will take place in the coming months. This causes a big change in the event industry. Certainly for the near future, but also for the future after Corona. Therefore the event industry and advertisers should see the rapid development in the field of online events as an opportunity. It offers an opportunity to completely rethink event formats.
Rethinking events – a race for creativity
The current situation is comparable to the early days of MTV and Viva. A new format is a playground. It offers the possibility to try out new things and set up new rules. To break old viewing habits, to convince with innovations and thus to achieve new reach. It is the chance for young and creative companies to stand up to the old hands. It is a race of creativity. It is a race of creativity and offers the opportunity for innovation and a complete new start for the event industry.
Develop new online rooms for meetings and fairs
Where are the young savages of the creative industry? When do online game developers get the idea to create new worlds for online events? When can meeting rooms be booked in the game Fortnite or rented in the western salon of Red Dead Redemption?
Instead of trying to copy trade fairs to the Internet, the possibilities of the online world should be used. What are the options for taking meetings and trade fairs to the next level? Copying the old to the Internet can only fail. The event industry can use the potential of the digital world to create advantages over conventional events. If Fortnite manages to host the biggest concerts in the world (12.3 million viewers with Travis Scott), why not also meetings and events? The online gamer reach is incredibly large. Whoever addresses this target group should think about events in this environment – in this online world.
Expand online events with virtual tours
Online events offer an opportunity for virtual tours with personal support to clarify questions and point out special features. Without waiting times, companies declare their products and services to customers and press. Brand worlds can be created detached from time and space. The possibilities are unlimited in these spaces.
The future of online events, virtual events, hybrid events and offline live events
Online events and hybrid events offer an advantage over offline live events not only in times of crisis. They provide immediate information and figures on participants, offer real-time interaction and significant cost savings compared to offline events. Travel and accommodation costs, catering and room rental no longer play a role. In addition, online events create an accessibility to events that would not be possible in the offline world. Anyone can participate in any event at any time of day or night. An online event platform allows considerably more participants than many a room concept allows. The reach can be increased enormously.
What are the challenges in the implementation of online events?
With the change from live events to online events, organizers are challenged to deliver new solutions. Those that really work and that give the guest a noticeable added value on the screen. Some factors can be quickly identified on closer inspection, e.g.:
- a new kind of moderation, more complex and faster than classic TV and event moderation
- new type of video cuts and transitions
- break old habits of vision
- the people on the screen want to be challenged
- adapt the form of interaction by offering more than TV and acting differently than a chat
- Create opportunities to ask questions directly to the experts – other kind of entertainment (visual experiences)
- exciting tracking shots to give the spectators an “on-stage” and in the middle of the action
To compensate for the shorter attention span on the screen, an online event has to inspire and emotionalize concepts more than conventional events.
Now is an exciting time for event innovations
Now is the time when event planners, managers, companies and event agencies can completely reinvent a format. Relevant content and messages have to be created and the digital potentials have to be used. It is no longer just about additional content or hybrid events, but about an independent digital online event format. New and challenging, events that are exciting and arouse curiosity.
Live entertainment must also reinvent itself with it. Presenters, guests, keynote speakers, artists, shows and stars must adapt to the new format. They should be visually inspiring and prepared for presentation and interaction on the screen. A mixture of TV show and online game with a different kind of interaction of guests and viewers must be created. Thereby, borders can be broken and cooperations with game developers bring exciting partnerships to the event industry.
Online events are bold, fast and innovative. They want to be fun and create added value at the same time. There are opportunities to build a network and a community. They make sense and act sustainably.
Understanding community building as an opportunity
The situation through Covid -19 creates new opportunities. Companies can use online events to build a community. Customer loyalty and the exchange with the community can be intensified by using online events. Even advertising can offer added value in direct communication by helping the customer achieve his goals. The faster option of making appointments and real-time support also increases customer loyalty.
What will the future of the event industry look like?
We are in the middle of a digital revolution. This progress is unstoppable. Events that are 100 percent offline will probably no longer exist after the Corona crisis. The current situation shows that technical providers of virtual platforms are delivering ever better solutions for any online format for events. Be it for a conference, a meeting or the happy hour meeting with colleagues and friends.
Whoever does not develop further now, will lose the connection
In line with the digital opportunities and new online concepts, the acceptance of online events will continue to grow rapidly.
The savings potential and the new form of interaction will drive companies to fundamentally rethink their concepts for all live events. The one or other event will be replaced by an online presence in the future. With the current steep learning curve of all participants, there is no going back to conventional events. When a vaccine is available in spring 2021, the event industry will have developed considerably. Anyone who does not participate in this development and learning phase now will have a hard time keeping up with the rest after the Corona crisis.
Do online events replace live events?
Personal contact cannot be replaced in the B2B sector. Live events will not disappear after the Corona crisis, but will experience a huge influx. This is already due to the pent-up demand that is currently arising. To celebrate great success with live events, a connection between the online and offline world can no longer be ruled out.
To ensure that this new start is environmentally friendly and sustainable, Stefan Lohmann’s Sustainable Event Solutions platform offers a guideline. (Link – Sutainability Rider and to Sutainable Events Solutions)
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Online events made easy – How we can help you
Are you looking for an entertainment concept for an online event? Please contact us without obligation and we will be happy to advise you. We will help you with the appropriate selection and contracts.
Anyone can immediately implement sustainable events!
You want to implement your event sustainably? Stefan Lohmann has prepared a free guide for you on the Sustainable Event Solutions website and also a checklist for download.
Stefan Lohmann (Artist Booking)
Stefan Lohmann is a Hamburg-based Talent Buyer and Artist Relations Manager. His service portfolio includes the placement of artists as well as the creation of comprehensive live entertainment concepts for concerts, festivals and events. With his live entertainment network of artists and creative people, he also represents market-leading show productions in the entertainment field of aerial shows, drone shows, video projection mapping, dance shows … “We create for our customers what is not available on the market,” says Stefan Lohmann about his company philosophy.
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Online events for your virtual venue
The creation of music and live entertainment concepts together with the customer is one of the specialities of live entertainment expert Stefan Lohmann. With Sustainable Event Solutions, he also offers support for climate-neutral, sustainably oriented events and tours.
Stefan Lohmann – Talent Buyer & Booking Agent
“As Artist Relations Management & Live Entertainment Network, I offer a transparent and efficient solution to channel and professionalize live entertainment handling while reducing costs and increasing artist selection.”
“We place international Stars, Shows, Orchestra, Celebrity Speakers, Hosts, Performer …. and create Live Entertainment Concepts with WOW-factor”