We live in a world where everyone is connected 24/7. And yet, these past few days and weeks have shown us the actual possibilities of the digital world. in light of the current pandemic, our virtual needs have certainly expanded as companies are looking for alternatives to in-person meetings.
The most obvious effect has been online events and works from home. The evolution from real to virtual is more complex then duplication. The virtual event possibilities are still undefined as each passing day; we experience something new. This leads to questions like what are the limits of the digital world and how much in-person experience can you transform into virtual?
Endless possibilities of Virtual Events and the Future
You may not have realized this by now, but people all across the world are taking part in webinars, zoom conferences, or classrooms. At the basic level, these online meetings can be defined as a virtual event. As the dynamics are shifting to virtual, it’s only natural to be curious about what the future holds and possibilities.
Virtual Popular Choices
When it comes to videoconferencing apps like Skype and Zoom, you will notice how there is not much to control. For a virtual event, you need to go one step ahead. This is where live streams come in, as seen on social media platforms like Facebook, YouTube, and Twitch. Companies have taken online platforms for galas, birthday parties, and concerts.
With time we have seen some major evolutions in Livestream platforms that make it feel like broadcast. There are several tools like chat boxes, breakouts, and gamification that is keeping the engagement alive in digital.
You can either opt for one stream or multiple streams like on a TV channel, depending upon your needs. It is best to get in touch with events companies in Abu Dhabi for choosing the best live stream platform for hosting your event.
Innovative Technology Enhancing Virtual Experiences
Imagine hosting an expo or a tradeshow – except there are no attendees and sponsors in the same space. Instead, brands have developed virtual exhibit booths that can be toured in real-time by an interested audience. Technology has made virtual events successful on many levels.
Facebook Groups as Virtual Hangout
For the first time in history, we saw Facebook advertising during the infamous Super Bowl: A 60 second commercial promoting Facebook Groups. Groups are finally getting attention, thanks to travel restrictions and lockdowns. Groups provide an intimate setting where people can hang out together virtually. Statistics show that almost 1.4 billion people take part in more than 10 million groups on Facebook. It offers multiple marketing opportunities for brands and connects with a broad consumer base.
Facebook VR Platform – Oculus Rift
A few years ago, Facebook invested in a VR platform called Oculus Rift, changing the way people interact in the digital world. According to its developers, it is an
“Expanding VR world where you can explore, play, and create in extraordinary ways. At Horizon, you’re not just discovering a new world; you are part of what makes it great.”
It sounds exciting and seems like a video game to keep people engaged and leverage several brand opportunities. It shows how technology is changing the dynamics of business conferences and expos/exhibitions. Therefore, we recommend getting in touch with an event company to incorporate gamification and immersive experience in your events.
3D Virtual Panoramas
Finally, one of the most enticing technologies replacing physical events is the 3D panorama, which can perfectly model indoor spaces into digital. This modeling is used by companies to plan the trade show space and showcase it to the audience. The technology promises endless opportunities.
This feature is already being used in the real world. For example, The Hawaii Convention Center and Colorado Convention Center have integrated this feature into their maps that show virtual layouts of the venue space, including banquette halls, theatres, exhibit halls, etc. This technology can be used to create virtual events in a space similar to the original in-person location.
Best Virtual Event Practices to Help You Succeed
As weeks go by with coronavirus pandemic still at peak, we are discovering the potential of virtual events. Online events have reduced the need for travel with increased flexibility and provided some incredible experiences. Here are some of the best practices to help you host a successful virtual event.
- Don’t try to recreate a physical event in a virtual setting. Instead, use different opportunities to enable interaction and engagement on virtual platforms.
- Audiences are the key to building exciting virtual events. Every piece of planning needs to connect to your audiences and what they want.
- Virtual events are more integrated than physical ones. Therefore, use multiple channels like VR, AR, social media, etc. to engage the audience in a new way.
- Don’t replicate physical events but focus on recreating the ‘feeling’ of such events. Use digital integration to create that feeling in virtual.
- Find partners that can help you build your event in a meaningful way.
Are you Ready to Test Your Virtual Event Boundaries!
The global COVID-19 pandemic with quarantine and self-isolation orders have made significant changes in our daily routines and business practices. The crisis has surprisingly taken the event industry on a new level. Events are still taking place worldwide as they have shifted to online platforms and digital, where marketing and engagement opportunities are limitless.