This week's episode is all about how event planning has gone virtual. I'm joined by Erica Maurer, a veteran event planner and partner at EMRG Media, a leading full service event planning and digital marketing company. She is also a partner and producer of The Event Planning Expo, New York City’s largest events and hospitality industry trade show.
Erica is now dedicated to helping her clients adjust from in-person events to virtual event experiences. In December, she successfully produced 65 virtual events. Her client roster includes BuzzFeed, Columbia Records, The Robin Hood Foundation, Smile Train, Pitchbook, Twitter, Google, and many more.
The pandemic has caused a shift in the way we live our lives causing us to adapt to the new normal. The Events industry was heavily affected. In-person events always used to be an exciting experience that could extend your network of contacts or entice you to sample food and drinks. There was always an engaging factor.
The whole process of how we host events has changed. We have had to reevaluate the purpose and objectives of the event. It's more important than ever to have the audience's attention by showcasing value. This way you can get everyone involved and make them feel like they're part of something bigger. Hosting virtually can initially be challenging but there are so many ways you can do this.
A few different suggestions for virtual events that we found effective included coffee meetings, dinners and live entertainment. It doesn't matter if you're a startup business or a major corporation, all these things are easy to set up. By sending vouchers for food or drinks it's possible to meet up virtually over a coffee, drink or meal. By using courier services the meeting can be in the comfort of your home or workplace. For team building activities you can be more adventurous by hosting quizzes, karaoke or magic tricks.
There are so many tools and platforms available that can be used for events in order to create a better experience. The reality is with some of these platforms there's a learning curve so people tend to stick to the most popular choice, Zoom, since it is easy to use. It also has the advantage to be customised so this can suit your event.
Stay safe and enjoy the episode.
A huge thank you to Campaign Refinery for sponsoring this episode. Check out the amazing email marketing automation tool they've created.
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