There’s no escaping the media coverage about the Coronavirus. People are scared and some are buying all the disinfectant, toilet paper, and pasta supplies they can get their hands on. The Germans use the term “Hamster Purchasing” for this. Google it!
While supply chains all over the world are being disrupted, there’s no industry feeling the impact quite like live events and trade shows. The list of mega programs being cancelled is getting longer every day and this puts the companies that planned these events as a cornerstone of their communications strategy in a very tough situation.
Cancelling the Mobile World Congress or Facebook’s F8 just weeks before doors likely means that very few Dollars and Euros will get refunded. The venue might honor the commitment to a future date, but who knows.
Apart from the financial damage, there’s still the question of how to get key messages to these target audiences. Whether it’s an internal strategy meeting, the announcement of a new product or service, or about the roadmap for the future – the need to communicate is still there.
Some companies are making the right moves. Since the Geneva Auto Show was cancelled, Mercedes-Benz for example has switched gears to a digital presentation of their new E-Class happening today.
While nothing can replace the personal interaction at a live event, we know that digital or hybrid events can be a viable part of any communications strategy. We’ve been living in this world for years and our clients like Schneider Electric have experienced the benefits.
Here’s a scenario: You’ve spent months creating kick-ass content for your event or tradeshow and now the organizer has pulled the plug. Our advice? Let us help you take that valuable content and package it into an interactive broadcast. So, with comparatively little additional investment, you avoid the need to write-off 100% of your event prep and you will still have well-informed (virtual) event attendees.
As you can see, we’ve updated our website to ask all our constituents to “keep calm and go digital”. While you’re here, check-out our other new blog posts and read about the first time a Broadway show made it to Madison Square Garden. In closing, here’s some handy advice our friend Ray Wang from Constellation Research published over the weekend.