South African In-Person Events and Conferences Making a Comeback in 2023
The first major South African corporate calendar event is the African Mining Indaba, which is currently underway in the Host City of Cape Town. “With many of our clients in the mining industry, the Mining Indaba has always been an important date on the events calendar. It’s heart-warming to see thousands of delegates converge in person to discuss issues affecting the African mining sector under the theme: Stability, Security and Supply,” says Bonnie Smith, GM FCM.
Smith explains that there is a clear movement away from hybrid events in favour of live events in 2023. “Clients planning for virtual and hybrid conferences dropped by 75% in 2022 as compared to 2021,” she says. “With budgets ready and no concerns about interruptions and cancellations, corporates are once again booking live events throughout 2023 and 2024. Significantly more events are being planned for than in 2019.”
According to Forester research, this evolution is not surprising if you consider that 74% of marketers see events and conferences as their most important demand-generation tactic. The reason is that events allow brands to reach audiences faster and build more personalised relationships with customers.
According to Smith, there are five clear trends that are expected to define live events in the coming year:
Let’s go green
Going green isn’t just a trend. It is an important focus for most companies around the world. “As we move towards in-person events, delegates will look for events that promote sustainability and a carbon-neutral approach,” says Smith.
COP26 recently released a report to encourage event planners to run more sustainable events. Advice includes low-carbon alternative energy sources, using reused and recycled material, prioritising locally sourced and seasonal food items and encouraging attendees to use sustainable transport.
- Tech is here to stay
Delegates in 2023 expect a frictionless event experience with integrated technology. They want simple, user-friendly solutions before, during and after their conference. They’ll expect real-time networking that allows them to interact with other participants in person or through digital channels like forums, social media, or event apps. We could even see AI and voice technology make their entrance into the conference world.
Courtesy of Tourism News Africa – read full article here.