As an industry analyst, I am still, thankfully, often booked to speak on webinars and conferences. Some speeches have been standard webinars with a handful of speakers, or a panel discussion, and perhaps a hundred attendees. Other speeches have been within large events or conference with thousands of attendees, dozens of sponsors/exhibitors and scores of speakers. For the last 18 months or so all of these events have been managed and presented virtually because nobody has been travelling.
I’ve learned to be flexible because each platform is a little different to use. One day, I am set up as an avatar within a 3D-simulated conference center (in fact, I think I still have a conference room on one site where I can still invite people for a meeting). On another day, I sit in a Microsoft Teams videoconference and then get “beamed” into a conference by the organisers (that was quite a day as I needed three devices: the desktop/laptop to be in Teams; a tablet to monitor how the show was being broadcast/streamed live; and lastly, my phone which was set up as the clicker to advance the slides).
When planning their 2022 budgets, one of the most important challenges that CMOs now face is understanding how their events calendar should, or could, look for the coming year. With live events? And how? As a hybrid, and what is that exactly? Plus, what Marketing Event Management (MEM) platform(s) will be the most suitable for them in 2022.
- The crisis has accelerated the inevitable. Large Virtual Events are now SOP and many businesses will plan these as routine in their marketing calendars. Webinars are now also an accepted marketing tool across most sectors and geographies.
- Nearly one third of companies worry about scalability. The next most important challenge is cost and resource management.
- Over one half of companies used between six and ten vendors this year – most did not have a centralized procurement strategy for this topic. Expect his to change for 2022.
- Nearly three quarters of companies have serious difficulties monetizing their events efficiently. Over half have issues with supporting international audiences, managing presentation content, event registration and ticketing.
The report has several pages of insights as well based upon my conversations with both users and vendors. Our global survey of 1,500 business event practitioners discovered this vendor landscape of the Top MEM vendors as scored by the 1,500 survey participants:
- 6CONNEX, ACCELEVENTS, AIRMEET, BIZZABO, CADMIUMCD, CERTAIN, CIRCA, CVENT, HOPIN, KALTURA, MEETYOO, MICROSOFT, NOTIFIED , ON24, RAINFOCUS, SPLASH, SPOTME, VFAIRS, and ZOOM.
Watch out for the published version in December. Contact me if you’d like to hear more about this research.
Always keeping you informed! Peter