The Event Model is flipping on its head

Physical events are fully immersive and synchronous. Online changes it all.

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Since Covid-19 we have learned a lot about Event Tech and the "need" to grab something fast for the events coming in April, May, June and even July. 

The thing is, Event Tech and Zapnito (People Tech) are two different things. We don't compete with On24, Zoom, Hopin or House Party. Those are webinar and event platforms. They exist for live, synchronous experiences. 

Online expert communities built around Events live beyond a moment in time. Sure, we support Video panels (several to several). But those are very different to Webinars (several to multitudes). We can embed Webinars into the Community for that live experience. 

Wait, hold on:

Let's look at this from a higher view. Face-to-face events are synchronous, and fully immersive. You go to an event to learn, network, market, sell and buy. 80% of that experience is happening at the keynote, the breakouts, the coffee meetups, the speed dating and cocktail hours.

20% of the event experience then becomes asynchronous. (That doesn't mean it's not valuable - because an online community around an event can reach those who cannot attend. We have been powering event communities since we started on this SaaS journey in 2014.)

With so many events being canceled, there seems to be a knee-jerk, and seemingly justified need, to replicate the event online and find the right Event Tech. We get it. 

But the issue here is that people who are online have 10x more distraction than if you are going to an actual physical event. Many cannot even attend the "live stream" because they are doing other things - like looking after their kids or going shopping when there's a quiet moment. A keynote speaker who is getting a delivery or interrupted by family members cooking dinner?

We can't assume that live and synchronous is what is going to work in this new environment. In fact, I would assert it is the INVERSE now. 

80% of an event experience will be now asynchronous (on-demand access to content, experts and networking) and 20% will be live. And that 20% might be generous.

I'd also submit that an online community, at least running on Zapnito, is an immersive experience. That being on-demand content, networking and video panels with experts in real-time. The key word here is: On-Demand. 

Here's the thing. When the world returns to actual physical events again, a hybrid model (Community and Physical Event) will beome the new normal. It is very likely that the events will become just another format for serving the Community as the 2020's status quo. 

So this is not just about saving the event in 2020. It is about changing how we do business for the entire decade. And we believe, and have always believed, that Expert Knowledge Networks and Professional Communities - at scale and enterprise - is how you do this.

So join us in changing the model for a decade to come.

....

And if you want to hear about this from a true expert, see David's article here:

https://community.zapnito.com/channels/340-community-insights/posts/63861-audiences-community-and-online-events

Originally published on: https://www.davidworlock.com/ 

Charles Thiede

CEO & Co-Founder, Zapnito Ltd.

My background is in technology, professional services and digital media. I co-founded Zapnito due to a number of related observations from my time in these sectors: 1) the social web is creating a huge amount of noise 2) expertise that brands have built up over decades is being drowned out and hidden from those that need it 3) these brands are therefore losing their audience to often undeserving and unhelpful sources, and 4) people are finding it harder to access the expertise that they truly value. I therefore decided to create Zapnito, a white-label platform to help trusted brands reclaim their audiences via expert-driven knowledge networks.

1 Comments

Go to the profile of Richard Carter
Richard Carter 7 months ago

There will be a lot of stakeholders (hotels, conference centres, event organizers, participants) who will want to go back to the old ways of physical events for financial and social reasons but those salad days are over. The disruption caused by COVID19 will be the catalyst for the new world of blended events/communities just like it will be for blended learning/education. It will be driven by financial factors (lower budgets as companies/the world tries to claw back the current splurge to keep things going) and convenience/value of blended vs. F2F.