I just came across a recent video post by Victoria Rennie of Incisive Media from Conference Summit 2015, who talked about how event companies should approach digital.
As an events professional, she has a deep understanding of the role of virtual and hybrid events and her views align with what our clients at INXPO are experiencing. Victoria posits:
- Online events cannot replace face to face engagement
- Lead generation is a strategy that makes sense for digital events
From our own clients, we have heard the following data points to support this approach for their hybrid and digital events.
One client reports that for their annual hybrid event, only 20% of live event attendees are new contacts. For the online event, however, 70% are new contacts. The online extension of the event extends the reach for the brand, bringing in new targets to nurture and develop.
Another client who surveyed online event attendees found that over 60% were new contacts and 62% of online event attendees expressed interest in participating in a future live event with the organization. Digital makes sense as a first step to bring new targets into the pipeline.
These stats are not unusual. Digital events or hybrid extensions of a physical event allow someone who is interested in your brand to engage but with far less cost and commitment. At the digital event, the level of engagement is high, unlike the more limited exposure gained from other marketing channels.
As we see more organizations who host events get beyond the fear that digital will cannibalize live event attendance, the industry will understand, as does Victoria at Incisive, the right strategy to succeed with digital events. How do you use digital events? Reach out and let me know.