Do we really still need events? Surely we can connect via social media and Skype and don’t need to spend our time travelling and meeting people?
I remember watching a brilliant film called Up in the Air, starring the talented Anna Kendrick, Vera Farmiga and Mr George Clooney, the basic premise of the film was Clooney’s character Ryan Bingham travelled around the US firing people from their jobs. He racked up a lot of air miles, his personal goal was to get to 10,000. He was unpopular but he was satisfied he did a good job and he slept well at night. As he was about to reach the golden 10,000 air miles he was accompanied on the job by Anna Kendrick’s ambitious character who believed the job could be managed by videoconferencing, therefore making his job was redundant, just like theirs were.
Is this what’s happening to the world of events? Surely we don’t need these big expos anymore, we can just login, attend a webinar, participate in an online conversation or having almost the same experience using VR? Can’t we?
But connecting – as people we love to connect;
We thrive on human connection; human touch.
We were created for relationship, with each other with the special people around us and I don’t think for a second that all the technological advances in mobile, social media and VR will replace our need for human connection.
I can see it can enhance and contribute and I don’t doubt it’s the exhilarating future but people inherently still want connection. We need social, we need advance communication methods, we need Skype and hangouts and Snapchat, but we’re still all human and we still all need connection. And because of our need for connection, to look someone in the eye when you are having a conversation with them, to read their body language, it means that events still have a large part to play in our marketing mix.
The events industry must adapt and evolve and include all new means of a communities’ connectivity as it enhances our physical connection. We need to incorporate distinct social media strategy into our events planning.
How do we incorporate and use the tools available to us to enhance our event experience?
- LinkedIn groups attract attendees before and after the event for eleventh hour discussion and connection forming
- Relevant social media builds excitement in advance of an event, provides connections during an event and follow up opportunities after an event. I wonder how many people you are connected to on social media because of an event? Events give us an opportunity to expands our circles, our networks and our sphere of influence.
- Post event blog posts, information an slide sharing you may have missed at the event and plans for the future going forward after the event.
Events can be enhanced by digital engagement of participants.
Successful events have human interaction and virtual interaction to make them the most beneficial for the participants. The combination of these two powerhouses means our face to face events have way more potential that ever before.
I’ll see you at the bar.