What does the future hold for live events?

As some parts of Australia gradually move out of lockdown, and others seem to be experiencing second waves, the live event industry is watching nervously to see what the future holds. Chris Bland, Managing Director of Monkey Media and an event and trade show veteran gives his predictions. Firstly, nobody knows what the short term future holds. When even the world’s leading epidemiologists can’t agree on predictions for future outbreaks of COVID-19 or the likely timing of a vaccine, we can’t make any specific predictions. So what that means is the event sector is going to need to be patient and it’s going to need to be flexible. People are rightly wary that even if the situation looks under control further outbreaks are very possible, which makes it hard to commit to run or attend large scale events, even 6 or 12 months in the [...]

Tips for running a successful webinar

The uptake of webinars and Virtual Conferences has exploded since COVID-19 hit and all trade shows and face-to-face meetings were banned, and they aren’t going away anytime soon. Even with restrictions easing, it might be a long time before large events can return to full force, and many companies will have limited travel budgets or be cautious when it comes to in-person visits. So it’s worth investing now in better ways of communicating with industry and potential customers. The pandemic has highlighted that webinars aren’t just a substitute for live events – they have their own benefits when it comes to branding, customer engagement and quality lead generation. You can read more about how they can benefit your business on this blog post. If you’re thinking about reaching potential customers with a webinar, here are five key tips to help you better connect with your [...]

Webinar follow ups: keep the conversation going 

Some companies produce their own webinars and virtual conferences, while others join industry trade events that were previously held live, or work with an agency or publisher to run something more hybrid, either under their own brand, or co-branded.  Sponsoring webinars and Virtual Conferences is great for lead generation because you are using someone else's already established lists which can contain a whole new audience for you.  Sponsoring webinars can include brand recognition through logos in event promotion, speaking slots or video presentations in the program, information sent directly to these lists before or after the event, and other options.  These new contacts can opt in to receive more information about your product or service and if it’s a high-quality webinar, you will be associated with it and seen as an authority in the space.  If you’re hosting your own webinar, you will already have [...]

Webinar technology: getting it right

People are forgiving when there are technical issues during webinars and virtual conferences, but it only takes a minute or two of dead air before you lose someone’s attention. When your audience is sitting at their computer, it’s easy for them to switch over to doing something else, so it’s important to get the technical basics locked down. There are a number of webinar platform options available including GoToWebinar, On24, ClickMeeting and Zoom, with the choice depending on a number of factors, including price and the specific features needed.   Regardless of the platform, the key is to fine tune communication between the production team, speakers, and the host/MC, to ensure that everything is seamless on screen, said Monkey Media’s Marketing Account Manager, Harry Johnston.  Monkey Media has run several Virtual Conferences in 2020, including Digital Utilities, Disaster Management, Asset Management for Critical Infrastructure, Flow Technology, [...]

Webinar format: make it fit-for-purpose

There is no set rule for how long a webinar or Virtual Conference should be, as the length of time should fit the content. If you’re turning a previously live event into a webinar, it’s important to not try to just jam in the existing content. For an event that was previously a one or two day conference, this could be compressed into a 3-4 hour webinar.  This is what happened with Monkey Media’s Digital Utilities 2020 Conference. As detailed on Lifehacker, the COVID-19 lockdown and travel restrictions began less than a week out from the Digital Utilities conference.  Chris Bland, Monkey Media’s Managing Director, said the decision was made to move it online on Friday, with the event starting the following Thursday.  “This gave the production team only three work days to transform it into a completely Virtual Conference, including finding the best platform, [...]

Webinar content: what value is it offering?

The content of a webinar or Virtual Conference is what will get people to register, so you need to be offering high quality information and engaging speakers. Think about what your identified target audience and potential customers would want to learn about and create a program around their interests and pain points. You need to be thinking about the webinar content in terms of what value you can give the people watching, rather than focusing on direct promotion of your business.  Monkey Media Managing Editor, Laura Harvey, creates the programs for the company’s Virtual Conferences and said the choice of speakers can play a big part in the success.  Monkey Media has run several Virtual Conferences in 2020, including Digital Utilities, Disaster Management, Asset Management for Critical Infrastructure, Flow Technology, and Smart Cities. “You need to decide if you will use an internal speaker from [...]

How webinars can benefit your business

How webinars can benefit your business  COIVD-19 has caused a significant shift in how businesses conduct their operations and communicate with their customers, as people can no longer meet face to face. With everything and everyone moving online, webinars have become one of the best ways to connect with a large audience in the current climate.  However, even before the emergence of COVID-19, webinars have long held a special place in the marketing strategies of many businesses, as they offer huge benefits to branding, customer engagement and quality lead generation.  Webinars are essentially virtual events, where a large group of people can gather online and learn more about a specific topic by listening to presentations from expert speakers. It doesn’t matter where delegates are located – as long as there is an internet connection, anyone can participate, making it a very efficient communication strategy.   If [...]

Monkey Media’s event philosophy

Like a number of publishing companies, we’ve recently made the move into hosting live events, which has been daunting, thrilling, scary and fantastically satisfying (often all at the same time!). Since stepping into the world of events, we’ve come to see them as a natural extension of what we already do in the magazines we publish for the infrastructure, energy and utilities sectors. Magazines and events: more similar than you might think In many ways, events allow us to gather up all of the things that are great about our magazines, and deliver them over a concentrated window of time. This allows our delegates to immerse themselves in the topic in question, and hone in on some of the problems they’re looking to solve or the projects they’re looking to get up and running. Like magazines, events allow us to reach a large audience of [...]

Are industry events still relevant?

Sometimes it’s tempting to think that work is busy enough without taking time out to attend events. We get it. It’s frustrating to be away from the office only to find your time was wasted. So how can you be sure attending, sponsoring or exhibiting at an event is worth it? Embrace the experience If you’re exhibiting at an event, or even just attending, don’t be “that person” who hides away from everyone and focuses only on their phone or laptop. We’ve seen people pay huge amounts to exhibit at an event and then sit at the very back of their stand and do nothing but answer emails. Delegates don’t dare interrupt the intense stare they have going with the screen and they’ve got no chance of making new contacts. The same thing applies if you’re a delegate at an event; be present and engage [...]

5 ways to make the most out of attending a conference

Whatever industry you work in, attending conferences can be a valuable way for you to improve your knowledge, increase your business and expand your network of connections. The benefits of the event don’t stop when you leave the venue if you take a few simple steps in the days, weeks and months that follow. 1.  Add your contacts to your CRM system A customer relationship management (CRM) tool is vital for any business that has moved beyond the small business status. You can’t possibly remember everyone you meet and this is a great way to manage your contacts. Tools like Capsule or Salesforce work well and can integrate with your email system to help keep track of communication. But any CRM system is only as good as the information you store in it, so make sure you record all contacts in there. 2.  Solidify your [...]