A recent discussion on The Virtual Events & Meeting Technology group on LinkedIn (must join to see the thread) caught my attention recently. It asked what the “highest recorded attendance figure” was for a virtual exhibition.
Unfortunately, many numbers cited in case studies or media articles are all self-reporter. My concern is the use of self-reported numbers doesn’t help our industry. By focusing on the largest number of registrants and attendees, highest number of leads per exhibitor, or longest time spent within the event, the conversation centers around who has the biggest and largest event.
Rather, our industry requires a consistent, standard way to measure the value of a going virtual. In turn, meeting and event professionals can evangelize the benefits of virtual for meeting specific business goals.
But this requires event organizers or virtual event platform providers to open their kimonos on the raw data. To allow a third-party organization to analyze and compare the data in aggregate. For the industry to come to a consensus on consistent terminology and key metrics to ensure we’re comparing apples to apples. That individual interests be put aside for the greater good. And for this to be done consistently on a regular basis.
So who’s game? Who’s willing to take up my challenge open the kimono and share raw data to develop this benchmark?
Let’s begin the discussion and see how we can move this forward.
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Cece Salomon-Lee is director of marketing for ACTIVE Network, Business Solutions division, and author of PR Meets Marketing, which explores the intersection of public relations, marketing, and social media.
This blog contains Cece's personal opinions and are not representative of her company's.