Events and consumer experiences have been an important part of my career for decades and almost overnight, the very idea of being in a room with other people became a dangerous and risky proposition.
We learn more and more about this virus every day but it's safe to say that we will not be going back to the old way of doing events for quite some time or maybe ever.
Now is the time for marketers to get more creative and reinvent the event.
At KRW Consulting, we are working with our clients on developing personalized consumer experiences in lieu of the typical event. It's a process of looking at each brand's DNA and creating an experience that is authentic to the brand and safe for consumers. In the process, our clients are learning so much about their consumers, what connects them to the brand and what keeps them coming back.
What will events look like?
Perhaps an intimate, yet roomy, dinner for 10 will be a refreshing change, or a drive in movie with gourmet food where you can actually discuss the plot during the movie.
Maybe a Zoom conference where you can meet your favorite designer and learn about a new collection or a virtual concert where you can hear your favorite artist with 10 of your closest friends.
It's time to reimagine the art of the event.
I have to say, I have enjoyed the new "authentic" approach to eventing. Seeing celebrities, performers, business leaders, reporters and influencers in their own environments evokes a more intimate and authentic vibe.
Last week, I was struck at the ease in which BCRF adjusted their usually heavily attended annual Hot Pink Party fundraiser from in-person to virtual. They had an impressive roster of celebrities participate and raised over 5.2 million for breast cancer research. And it was entertaining, emotional and engaging. Will this new world allow marketers to have more access to celebrities because they can virtually pop in and perform or speak? I would like to think so.
Source: Getty Images
The Dalai Lama said "It is very rare or impossible that an event can be negative from all points of view."
I suspect that reinventing the event in the short term will continue to evolve. We will learn from this time and perhaps in the process make eventing easier, less expensive and, dare I say, equally impactful.