Earlier in 2022, a webinar featured speakers who looked at 22 association trends that event planners can expect and should consider when planning for 2022 and 2023. Ten of the trends identified were:
- The Big “O” – COVID variants such as Omicron will continue to impact society, so planners must be ready to adjust plans quickly.
- Virtual Scars – Everyone is exhausted from virtual events – planners, attendees, and exhibitors.
- Hybrid Redefined (Again) – Costs, ability, audience needs, and demand will prevent some events from occurring in-person and online at the same time. Hybrid will focus more on community and online experiences surrounding the in-person event. For example, a keynote speech may be recorded and shared online later but will not be broadcast live.
- Economic Pressures – Inflation, workforce limitations, and supply chain challenges will impact the event and everyone involved with it. Adjusting food and beverage choices and choosing smaller venues may be necessary.
- DEI – Event planners must be careful to ensure the content and the event team represent the audience.
- Politics Play a Bigger Role – Controversial laws in the state of the event’s host state may result in loss of attendees or exhibitors. Although events are planned far in advance, new laws can take effect quickly, so event planners must be prepared with contingencies.
- Agile Everything – Budgeting, planning, marketing, and communication must be carefully coordinated among team members, with everyone ready to change with little notice.
- ROTI (Return on Time Investment) – More than ever before, be sure you give attendees a compelling reason to leave work and home to attend the event.
- Focus on What Matters – Many frills at events go unnoticed, so streamline or cut them. Attendees focus on networking and catching up with peers.
- Rethink Success – Fewer attendees do not mean less for exhibitors, sponsors, and speakers. The people who choose to attend are more likely qualified buyers.
To see the full list of 22 trends and access a link to the webinar, click here.