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Chart of the Week: audience safety biggest challenge for live shows

Audience safety continues to be the biggest obstacle for resuming in-person events – however fears have had a significant drop, a new survey reveals.

Findings from EventMB’s State of the Event Industry 2021 report show 35% of the respondents polled were concerned about attendee and stakeholder safety at live shows. 

This figure is significantly lower than last year when 55% considered safety at physical events as their top concern.

Other factors like travel limitations (21%) and lockdown and related restrictions (15%) were also cited by respondents in affecting the return to live shows. 

A small percentage (9%) remained hampered by financial constraints while those facing budgetary issues rose to 10% from 6% in 2020.  

EventMB surveyed hundreds of event planners, managers, technologists and marketers throughout 2021 for its industry report.

Most of the respondents were located in North America (60%) and Europe (23%), followed by Asia (7%), Africa and the Middle East (6%) then South America (3%).   

What’s behind the figures?

The decline in numbers can be attributed to the global vaccine rollout that has made organisers more confident in planning events while ensuring their audience’s safety.

However, the emergence of the Omicron variant could play spoilsport if new Covid-19 cases rise at a rapid rate and there’s a delay in administering booster vaccine shots.

This could trigger new lockdown measures and international travel restrictions – already enforced in some countries – and may again affect face-to-face meetings and events in the coming year.

In a recent update though, the European Medicines Agency gave tentative approval to the WHO-backed findings of Omicron being less severe than the Delta variant.

This suggests nations could be better equipped to handle new cases and host large gatherings. 

Meanwhile, Pfizer and BioNTech said a new jab for this particular variant would be available by March 2022.       

What does it mean for event organisers?

Organisers should be prepared for all outcomes.

This means having a strategy in place to continue with virtual meeting options alongside hybrid and in-person events. 

Focus should also be on boosting revenues digitally and investing in ‘always-on’ communities to keep their audience connected.

We recommend going through our checklists to get top insights and best practices into these approaches:

Hybrid Monetisation Checklist: a step-by-step guide to help you drive revenue growth through both offline and online mediums. Download it now.

365 Community Technology Checklist: learn what goes into building a successful online community by investigating each technical element in detail. A must-read if you plan to select an event platform for your community. Download it now

Event Data Safety Checklist: events have become more digitised than ever. It’s important to use the wealth of data available in a safe and efficient way. This checklist includes all the questions you need to ask your technology provider to ensure you are on the right side of control. Download it now.

We hope you enjoyed reading this article and found it useful. At ExpoPlatform, we want to help you build better events and communities. Please get in touch and ask for a demo here. Thank you.