With many events turning to the digital landscape as a way to stay relevant during the current climate, many more events have been launched as online-only, to stay ahead of the curve and reach a global audience, all from the comfort and safety of their own homes.
One such event is Evolve: The Virtual Event for Planners. Organised by Baptiste Boulard, CEO of Swapcard, the event is aimed at premium and large-scale organisers, and aims to help them adapt to the world of online events. Conference & Meetings World publisher Mash Media are proud partners for the digital event.
We spoke to Boulard to explain to our readers more about the upcoming event.
What can attendees expect?
Evolve: The Virtual Event for Planners will provide both a community of global industry experts and a first-hand experience of what a virtual event entails.
All those that attend the event will be able to network and create business connections with other members of the international audience (hailing from Europe, the US, the Middle East, and Asia) via chats and video calls.
The main themes of Evolve: The Virtual Event for Planners are as follows:
- How to adapt in times of crisis
- How to find opportunities for growth & change
- How to transition to virtual and hybrid events
- The future of the events industry
Attendees should also expect internationally renowned speakers such as: Corbin Ball, Consultant at Corbin Ball & Co; Jacquelyn Wells, Vice President for mdg; Simon Foster, Ex-CEO, Comexposium and Chair at the AEO; and Nick Dugdale-Moore, Regional Manager for Europe at UFI.
These speakers will be discussing various topics and aim to provide answers and solutions to the biggest questions and challenges that event organisers are facing right now. Audience input will be encouraged so the speakers can cover everything the industry is uncertain of.
Why should event planners attend?
The event industry is going through a unique challenge right now, struggling to keep business afloat with the current Covid-19 travel restrictions, bans on group gathering and its consequential financial impacts. This means that cancelling events is out of the question.
People still need to interact, to see each other, to be part of a community – it’s what makes us human. So how can event organisers take a live attendee experience and recreate it online? As Charles Darwin said: “It is not the strongest of the species that services, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.”
It’s time for event planners to move toward a new experience, and Evolve: The Virtual Event for Planners will show them how to do that.
What was the thought process behind creating the event?
We at Swapcard feel that the events industry has to come together in the face of this challenge. United we stand, divided we fall. As Simon Foster said: “The biggest threat to our industry is not going digital. The biggest threat to our industry is constantly producing the same, again and again.”
Event planners are on tight schedules all year long and therefore don’t always have the time needed to brainstorm, innovate, and come up with fresh ideas. However, this health crisis has placed the industry in a position of necessity, and it needs to respond with innovation.
Our team at Swapcard has been in contact with clients big and small from around the world, who have all admitted to being in the same boat when it comes to Covid-19 and taking their events online. They all speak to us, but none of them speak to each other. We wanted to bridge the gap and create a space where the industry could meet and share with the common goal of saving business.
How has the market responded so far?
Evolve: The Virtual Event for Planners is an event for premium and large-scale organisers. The market is responding positively, as we are at nearly 1,000 registered attendees. We also had a vast pool of varied and experienced speakers that have been curated for specialised sessions.
Evolve: The Virtual Event for Planners was never created with the intention of being a marketing ploy for Swapcard. That’s why we’ve let the speakers, partners and voices from the industry take the lead on telling us what they want to hear. The idea has been, from the beginning, to bring the industry together and to promote best-practice sharing, networking, and finding solutions to this crisis together.
Register for the event here.