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When it comes to marketing events, choosing the right platform is crucial.

Updated March 5, 2024
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Discover how you can improve your events marketing by studying the recent report by Forrester.

The following are the main points to take away from the study:

Events have become increasingly important in achieving top business goals. They are critical to generating revenue, creating positive customer and employee experiences, and accelerating digital transformation efforts throughout an organization.

Companies benefit from optimizing engagement with in-person events while leveraging digital tools to expand reach and gain insights. In-person events help to deepen customer relationships, while digital features can expand reach and provide a better understanding of customer needs.

Event leaders want to consolidate their technology stack for a more comprehensive view of event performance. Although event leaders are becoming more confident in selecting the correct format for their goals, there are still issues to address, such as capturing and activating data, measuring performance metrics, and delivering more engaging Journeys. Streamlining technology and vendor relationships has become increasingly important.

Events are essential for achieving business goals.

Events play a crucial role in achieving an organization’s key business objectives, such as enhancing customer experience, boosting revenue, improving efficiencies, accelerating digital transformation efforts, and increasing business agility. Events provide a unique combination of personal engagement and scalability that can significantly impact these outcomes. According to a survey conducted by Forrester, respondents stated that their top internal and external event goals were focused on increasing employee (65%) and customer/member (49%) engagement, as well as deepening employee (63%) and customer (47%) understanding.

The pandemic has brought about technological advancements that have revolutionized how events are conducted. This holds for both virtual and in-person events. As the number and size of in-person events continue to increase, a survey by Forrester reveals that 77% of the respondents now expect more digital features than they did a few years ago. These features include on-site digital conveniences such as mobile event apps, automated check-in capabilities, and remote access to event content in real-time or on request. The convenience of these features is crucial. A significant 73% of those surveyed expressed their intention to serve virtual attendees as part of their in-person event strategies. Technology has transformed the event landscape, regardless of format.

Future Outlook: Virtual Events and Webinars

Virtual events track extensive data and behavioral insights, constituting a significant advantage. Digital technology makes it easier for people to attend these events. At the same time, it becomes easier for marketers to learn essential details such as what people are interested in, what is captivating them, what they are downloading, and how they connect to digital media.

While webinars may be more passive than virtual events, they continue to be a valuable tool by offering multiple tracks and experiences for attendees. According to Forrester, webinars still deliver value by driving profits, supporting partners and investors, and increasing product adoption.

Selecting a Comprehensive Event Approach

Many companies today organize various events – virtual, hybrid, and in-person. It is crucial to track the cost and performance of all these events. However, according to the Forrester survey, only 42% of the respondents can do so. 76% of respondents intend to invest in a platform catering to their needs across all event formats. Such a platform would give them a holistic view of the event’s performance and improve customer experience delivery. Growing system complexity challenges companies to capture accurate data and leverage insights for stakeholders, from customers to sales. A single platform that offers fully integrated reporting and dashboards can give businesses a clear and holistic view of data, including spending.

Aligning Formats with Goals

It is important to align the format and goals of events beyond just hosting individual events. An ideal event program should leverage the strengths of different formats to ensure continuous customer and employee engagement. For instance, you can invite attendees to webinars relevant to their engagement and interests after an in-person event. A single platform can help organizations achieve this objective faster than multiple-point solutions. Digital integration across event formats can enhance participant experience and boost company revenue.

Closing Thoughts

In-person events have made a comeback, but they now differ from past meetings, conferences, and trade shows. The industry has been transformed by digital technology, and attendees are now anticipating more from events in 2023. As a result, marketers need to meet these expectations to boost engagement and generate leads. According to Forrester’s research, consolidating event technology and integrating it more effectively is the best way to achieve this. This will ensure that both business and participants’ outcomes are optimized and inefficiencies caused by managing multiple partners and platforms are reduced.

Thankfully, the event technology market is maturing, providing more comprehensive functionality to support in-person, virtual, and hybrid events while offering better integration with enterprise systems. For more data, refer to the complete study “Level Up Your Event Platform Capabilities” by Forrester Consulting for Cvent.

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