Ever since online events came into the picture, there has been a constant debate going on regarding whether or not they are as efficient as physical events. While some are of the opinion that online events are more efficient than physical events, others believe that no matter how quick online events are, they can never replace physical events, for they have human feelings and emotions attached to them.
Seeing these many conflicts, we decided to address them, and here’s why we have come up with a quick comparison of Online Events and In-Person events.
So, without any ado, let’s jump straight into the blog and find out which format is better than the other.
What are Online Events? What are the Advantages of Online Events?
Online events are simply events hosted in web space rather than at a physical venue. These events use online event platforms and are powered by the internet. Also known as virtual events or digital events, online events have become the present and future of the event industry, for they deliver almost the same experiences as physical events.
Talking of the advantages that online events come with, here are a few to note:
1. Exponential Reach:
The first advantage that comes with online events is that there’s no restriction when it comes to expanding one’s reach with online events. As a brand owner or a marketer, you can reach out to people in the other corner of the world. Online events enable organizers to reach out to a global audience all at once.
2. Lesser Costs, More Profit:
Another notable advantage of planning and hosting online events is that organizers get to cut back significant costs and save money. Unlike physical events, online events don’t involve elements such as traveling, accommodation, stationery, catering, etc.
3. Highly Scalable and Flexible:
Moving onto the next advantage of online events, they come with high scalability as well as flexibility. As an organizer, you are allowed to target as many attendees as you want. Apart from it, as an attendee, you get to attend the event from any part of the world.
4. Engaging and Interactive:
While most people like to believe that online events are not engaging, what reality says is completely contradicting. Unlike popular belief, online events are engaging and let attendees interact with each other. Online event platforms such as Mixhub provide organizers with tools such as live chat, live polls, and more to connect and interact with people.
5. Live Analytics:
Talking about the next advantage, online event platforms enable organizers to collect live and detailed analytics of their events. These analytics enable organizers to analyze and examine how their online event actually went. With the data collected, the event organizers can check what went right or wrong with their strategy.
What are In-Person Events? What are the Advantages of In-Person Events?
As the name derives, in-person events are the traditional method of hosting events where attendees and organizers would gather at a physical venue. Also known as offline events or physical events, in-person events have always been people’s first choice.
Here are the most common advantages physical event offer to the organizers as well as the attendees:
1. Non-Verbal Interactions:
The first advantage that physical events offer is they enable attendees to have non-verbal instructions from fellow attendees. One thing online events lack, whereas physical events have is the human touch to interactions. Where the absence of facial expressions, tone, and body language makes it difficult for attendees to get the cues of sarcasm, humor, and other emotion that the message carries, the interactions happening at physical events are more meaningful for the said reason.
2. More Enchanting Experiences:
In-person events are said to deliver more enchanting and personal experiences to the attendees. For example, to ensure that the attendees have a memorable experience, the organizers can execute and design their events as well as the event venue in a certain way, adding value to the overall experience of the attendees.
3. More Focus:
The attention span of human beings is less, and by less, we mean as less as 6-7 seconds. There have been many types of research that show that it takes human beings an average of 23 minutes and 15 seconds to start disengaging from the event. With the internet connection and endless possibilities to get distracted, online events are not beneficial when it comes to keeping people engaged. However, this is not the case with offline events.
Though online events and online event platforms provide organizers with several possibilities to interact and connect with others present at the event; However, there’s nothing like connecting and networking at a physical event. Meeting someone in person has that human touch that digital networking will never have. Not only this, business-men have more chances of closing a deal at a physical event rather than an online one.
5. Exploring New Places:
Another most underrated advantage that comes with in-person events is that as an attendee, one gets to explore several places, something one would never get to do with online events. With physical events, one gets to work, connect and learn in a new environment. In addition, physical events let them travel, explore new cultures, try local food, and whatnot.
Comparison Between In-person and Online Events:
Both online and offline events have their own sets of advantages and disadvantages. However, there are several factors where online events beat their in-person counterparts. Let us have a look at what those factors are:
1. Easy Accessibility:
It might become challenging for organizers to find a suitable venue that can accommodate all attendees in case of physical events. Not only this, but traveling might also not be convenient for all attendees.
However, online events eliminate the need to travel to any venue to attend any event. It allows attendees and the organizers to save hefty sums of money and time. Virtual events enable organizers to tap into a wider range of audiences. Similarly, people from any part of the world can attend any event with the help of an online event platform.
2. Less Expenditure, More ROI:
There is a long list of expenses associated with offline events. As an organizer, one needs to book venues, take care of the catering and accommodation for the attendees, manage the travel expenses of the guests, and so much more. Hence, a physical event demands spending hefty sums of money.
However, in the case of online events, one gets to cut back several costs significantly. As an organizer, you don’t need to spend money on venues, catering, logistics, etc. In fact, the most significant investment in a virtual event is that of the online event platform.
3. Efficient Networking:
Of course, the networking and interactions taking place at a physical venue have a more human approach to them; hence, they are somewhat considered more meaningful. However, there’s always a sense of restriction with networking at physical events. The attendees might feel awkward approaching people in person.
However, with online events, approaching people becomes a lot easier and more convenient. All you need to do is find attendees who share the same interests as you, and reach out to them over the live chat functionality or other networking tools, provided by the virtual event platform.
4. Live Analytics:
We are sure you have hosted several offline events as of now. Are offline events feasible when it comes to gathering all the attendee information and data? Definitely not. Though you end up doing it, it would be nothing less than a nightmare itself. Moreover, is there any guarantee that the data will be accurate? Collecting attendee data is inconvenient in case of physical events.
However, in the case of online events, several online event platforms, such as Mixhub, provide organizers with the live analytics tool. This analytics tool enables the organizers to keep track of attendees’ activities throughout the event. Not only this, but with the help of this tool, the organizers can quantify their event strategies, and analyze how their event went in terms of profits or losses.
5. Do Your Bit Towards the Environment:
Planning and hosting offline events leads to a lot of environmental degradation. There is a lot of food wastage, CO2 emission, and several other things that lead to environmental pollution and add to global warming.
While in the case of online events, since there is no traveling involved, it eliminates all the contributing factors towards global warming. Not only this, there is no food wastage, paper wastage, and as well as less usage of plastic. All these factors add together and help you do your bit for the environment.
Most physical venues have limits on the number of people allowed and the cost of accommodating thousands of people must be considered. Virtual events are much easier to scale, accommodating more attendees at a fraction of the cost. For example, each event can accommodate up to 50,000 attendees. This can also extend your reach and increase brand awareness.
30% of people are more likely to talk to someone in a virtual booth. Perhaps it’s because people are afraid to approach someone at an event, or simply enjoy anonymity. In either case, the virtual event will offer tools such as polls, Q&A, live chat, and even a downloadable resource section to allow attendees to fully participate in your content. Some platforms also offer the ability to integrate with widgets, which can greatly enhance your interaction.
As you can also see, online events have got the upper hand over physical events. There’s no doubt that physical events have always been one way we have attended events; online events have widened our horizons and allowed us to explore a different world altogether. With the fast-paced world and constantly evolving technology, online events have become a convenient and better way to host and attend events.
Hence, dive into the world of online events with the best online event platform, Mixhub, and host events worth attending in 2022.