A recent survey of event planners conducted by etc.venues concluded that U.S.-based planners are showing eagerness to returning to live events this year and commitment to live events only in the future.
Seventy-six percent will hold their next face-to face event this year, while 21 percent will return to live-only events in 2021. A further 38 percent will go back to live only events in 2022, so 59 percent plan to focus on live events only in future, rather than adding a mix of virtual and hybrid events.
A key trend to have emerged, as the survey found, is that planners still strongly consider face-to-face meetings as irreplaceable. Eighty-two percent of this international group of event planners say they value them more than before the pandemic. While that is slightly lower than it was at the end of 2020 (88 percent), it is higher than it was in June 2020 when it was 77 percent.
Despite the interest in live-only events in the future, 68 percent of the group now thinks that hybrid events will continue to be more common than before the pandemic. This, however, is down from 73 percent when asked in December and similar to 67 percent when surveyed a year ago.
Garrett Ronan, chief operating officer for etc.venues USA says, “The innate belief in live events among both U.S. and U.K. event planners is rising to the surface and the popularity of hybrid events is beginning to fade now that restrictions are being lifted. After trying virtual and hybrid events during lockdown and recognizing their benefits and limitations, the majority of planners are clearly keen to return to live events very soon.”