Let’s talk about virtual networking. Back in 2020, networking events became virtual out of necessity rather than preferability and as a result have brought to life a new way of communicating we never thought possible (to this extent anyway). In some ways it has enabled the events industry to sustain its presence and allowed businesses to connect with people more often.
There is no doubt that the availability of technology has boosted the effectiveness of virtual networking and software such as Zoom, and Microsoft Teams has become an essential part of everyday life for both personal and business purposes.
Our top benefits of virtual networking events
It is Less Expensive
The overall cost of networking events will be reduced significantly. It can be up to 75% less expensive to be specific. You will save on, venue costs, setup and take down, and travel costs to name a few. Whilst some businesses have found themselves on a tight budget thanks to the pandemic this could make the world if difference. The only thing you have to worry about paying is the costs of the virtual meeting platform.
It saves time
Although virtual events do require some setup time for event hosting platform, registration, event marketing, and promotion, it’s significantly less than that of an in-person event. They also require no travel time! No need to leave two hours early to get to a meeting on time, you can be there with them in a click of a button (literally). This means employees and attendees can use that extra time to work on all the other important things that need their attention.
It is accessible for everyone
You can easily promote your event by sharing the link via email, your website and social media channels. People from across your network can join instantly without thinking about travel. There may be some in-person events some of your network are unable to attend due to travel distance etc. Maybe they even live in another country! Virtual networking allows access to everyone, no matter where they live.
It’s Easier to Make Connections
Virtual networking tends to be faster-paced since attendees don’t have to move from session to session, it can be easier to make connections with other attendees and speakers than an in-person event. And since everything is online, attendees can easily record important information (with permission of course!), like people’s names, titles, etc., right on their device making seamless post-event connections building virtual relationships from the outset.
However, the question I ask you is, is virtual networking here to stay?
As we move into 2021, many events are likely to stay virtual not only because of continued safety concerns, but also as a result of very valuable lessons learned in 2020.
In summary, businesses found that by going virtual, their event was openly available to an entirely new audience. This is because virtual events are more accessible than in-person events. Travel restrictions and costs aren’t as much of a concern as with in-person events, which results in higher attendance and greater participation.
However, we hope it’s not goodbye forever to the traditional style of networking. Meeting for lunch at a local restaurant to discuss business, the physical exchange of business cards that slowly pile up on your desk and general social interaction. Even getting dressed into something other than jeans and a t-shirt seems like a distant memory.
That’s it from me this week, why not connect with BCRS on social media and let us know your thoughts on which type of networking you prefer.
Published by – Lauren McGowan – Digital Marketing Assistant