In our time of confinement and social distancing, opportunities to interact and grow business connections have been limited. With events being cancelled on a global scale, event tech is more relevant than ever.
Our industry isn’t only working towards helping the event industry make the switch to virtual events, but also making sure that the connections that we gain from events can continue to prevail.
Let’s look at how to help your networking events transition from in-person gatherings to remote meetings.
Virtual events aren’t new, and the event tech industry has made immense progress in terms of providing digital options for attendees of all types of events. Event tech makes it possible for events planners to integrate an array of activities, even when their events are entirely digitalized.
Amongst these activities, networking remains a strong contender, especially in times when in-person interactions are harder to come by. Whilst a case can be made about face-to-face meetings and the undeniable benefits this garners, virtual B2B meetings are a safe alternative.
As a matter of fact, they can offer the same opportunities (or almost) as in-person, traditional event networking. Simply put, it isn’t because physical meetings have been put on hold that business leads should be too. In fact, we already use a virtual networking service to build connections and find leads daily: LinkedIn now has 500 million members and up to 40% of these users use their services regularly.
These efforts could very well translate to event networking platforms. In fact, the targeted matchmaking services this offers could improve lead generation for many companies. The database provided by these networking event platforms is already industry-focused and their matchmaking features help users identify potential clients or partners in a quick glance.
Overall, the past year has been very formative for the event industry. Faced with adversity, the industry has come together to identify and face our new challenges. Although virtual events have gained attention, we believe they will be part of our collective future as event professionals. There will always be a need for people to meet in person, virtual tools will always be an alternative that facilitates exchanges and help bypass travel expenses.
While the event industry is still navigating this transition, it’s important to keep in mind that collaboration is essential in times like these. We are proud to be able to help events innovate and create spaces of discussion and connectivity, especially when human connection is greatly sought after.
At B2B/2GO we facilitate networking at virtual and hybrid events with all kinds of features. One of those features is to allow attendees to book a timeslot with an expert of the industry and meet them in a virtual meeting room. Paired with other features on the platform, such as traditional meeting services, this would allow users to build their own networking agenda.
It is important to encourage exchange at your event with roundtable discussions. Users can register for a roundtable with a predetermined topic or can even suggest a topic of discussion on the platform. Virtual conference rooms will be used to host roundtable discussions.
With our traditional networking feature, users can view the list of attendees and filter it by interest. Once they identified the attendees they wish to meet, users can send them a meeting request and contact them with our internal messaging system.
Users can build their networking agenda with traditional and expert meetings, as well as round tables. They can also indicate their participation in virtual conferences and keynote presentations offered during the event, by adding these to their personalized agenda on the platform.
Web-based tools have helped elevate networking in traditional conferences and corporate events. In our current context, they will now help people connect and have contact with others, whilst practicing social distancing.
This in itself will not only improve lead generation but more so will help stimulate motivation and resourcefulness amongst people who must work from home.
In fact, event professionals are already envisioning a hybrid future – the union between on-site and virtual events is happening. Hybrid events may have lower attendance rates on-site, but they will help participants get in touch with more people than they used to be able to at traditional events.
For a few final words, we wish to thank our fellow event professionals for their willingness to share and their immense support. It’s only the beginning of virtual and hybrid events and we hope that our input was thought-provoking.
For more information Contact Jean-Pierre Dubois