Online event adoption and attendance growing

A new report conducted by the Virtual Edge Institute (VEI) and sponsored by Digitell Inc. analyzes trends at face-to-face and online events, and the numbers show that attendees are increasingly turning to both hybrid extensions and digital events (non-hybrid) to engage with their organizations.

The 2014 Digital Event Benchmark Report collected findings from more than 200 event producers and offers data and insights for online methodologies, business goals, marketing strategies and measurement approaches.

“Online engagement is growing in importance as organizations strive to extend their reach and capture a larger global audience,” says VEI’s Carolyn Clark. “VEI’s study helps the meetings industry gain insight into best practices for hybrid extensions and digital events and ultimately improve their event marketing and deliver results against business objectives.”

Selected key respondent takeaways:

  • 55 per cent of hybrid producers and 61 per cent of digital event producers indicated their attendance was trending up
  • 35 per cent are charging hybrid attendees 50 per cent of the face-to-face registration fee
  • 31 per cent of hybrid attendees spend more than five hours in the event, while 47 per cent of digital attendees spend one to two hours in the event
  • 65 per cent indicate their goal for producing online events is to serve constituents by providing education to those who cannot attend the physical event
  • 57 per cent of respondents work to monetize their events, a decline of 19 per cent from 2013
  • Monetization tactics are shifting; in 2013, 67 per cent ranked ‘advertising’ as successful, while only 28 per cent indicated ‘advertising’ success in 2014

“Now that the face-to-face cannibalization myth has been debunked, hybrid and digital event producers are challenged with measuring the impact of their events,” says Clark. “Many survey respondents are now tracking subsequent face-to-face attendance; regrettably, 64 per cent do not track this metric – this is a business intelligence gap that must be addressed.”

The 27-page report is free. Click here to download the insights directly from the Virtual Edge Institute website.

Venue & Supplier Profiles