COVID certainly put a strain on in-person events. While event organizers got creative and adapted, most still struggle to predict how the pandemic and attitudes towards employment (the Great Resignation) will impact the future of industry events.
We’ve been keeping a pulse on the industry. So whether you’re an event planner, corporate leader, or venue manager, we’ll help you navigate the biggest 2022 event industry trends.
More in-person events, less certainty
In November, American Express published an in-depth report forecasting the future of in-person events. While the survey results don’t provide hard-date predictions, it’s clear that organizations are increasing budgets in anticipation that social events will resume with some level of normalcy.
In the report, 64 percent of respondents said they’ve increased budgets to accommodate more events. Additionally, 67 percent believe in-person meeting levels will return to pre-pandemic levels within the year.
While we don’t anticipate a complete return to “normal” in 2022, the report suggests that more than 80 percent of all events will have an in-person component.
The Great Resignation will have an impact.
Economists looked at the Great Resignation of 2022 and scratched their heads. Some suggested that Americans were lazy or just didn’t want to work. Others took a more abstract view and argued that attitudes have simply taken a hard shift. In other words, money is no longer enough to satisfy workers. Instead, employees want more work-life balance and want to work for companies that share personal wellness and mental wellness values.
However you choose to explain the Great Resignation, the fact remains that there are currently more job openings than unemployed people in the U.S., and this will impact 2022 event industry trends.
How? Event planners are stretched thin, budgets are strained, and employee burnout is rising.
Hybrid events will take center stage.
Connex, an in-person, virtual, and hybrid events provider, in partnership with BizBash, a trade media platform, recently published a report from a recent survey. The survey results found that 75 percent of event hosts surveyed will add a hybrid component to their event.
Another 51 percent said they expect most of their 2022 events to be hybridized, and 25 percent said upcoming events would be fully virtual.
The Metaverse offers new possibilities for events.
It’s true that the Metaverse is still in its infancy. However, while many still dismiss it as a glorified gaming space, more organizations are exploring its untapped potential.
With the move to hybridized and 100 percent remote working models, workers are feeling Zoom fatigue.
The Metaverse provides an alternative meeting space where you can host events of any size, from small team-building exercises to large-scale events. While imperfect, the Metaverse gamifies digital events, bridging the gap between in-person and online events.
Whether the Metaverse rises to the top of the biggest 2022 event industry trends remains to be seen. However, more and more organizations are exploring this new space and looking for ways to adopt it.
While predictions on the future of events remain cloudy, two facts remain clear. First, in-person events are on the rise; second, technology will play an instrumental role in the 2022 event industry trends.
No matter what trends will continue or fade, at CSP Worldwide, we stay current with the latest event trends and technology to ensure we offer our clients the best and most up-to-date services. Contact us today to learn how we can elevate your event to help you meet your business goals.