What will events look like in 2020? Review and outlook.

Contents :

  • 1. The state of play: events in 2019
  • 2. Prospects 2020
  • 3. More than budget or event type, the trend for 2020 will be towards personalizing the participant experience.
  • 4. The hybrid event

The state of play: events in 2019

Whether it’s a trade show, seminar, sporting or cultural event, trends are evolving to adapt and offer the public an unusual experience. According to a study published by the Unimev, France’s event industry continues to grow, with constantly improving indicators.

Figures are healthy, reflecting the sector’s dynamism and future potential. In 2018, annual sales are approaching 65 billion euros, all event types combined. Sustained growth in 2019, with almost 7% added during the year.

The digital revolution continues to evolve, to the benefit of event organizers. The latter are increasingly using social networks, content distribution and event management platforms. In 2019, the mobile application has become the norm. According to Event MB, nearly 46% of project managers use applications for their events, and 26% are considering it.

Commitment and the creation of emotion have become the watchwords. People attending an event want a unique, personalized experience. Surveys, on-the-spot feedback, quizzes, gamification and interactivity… Today, it’s essential to be as close as possible to participants!

Event venues are becoming increasingly important in the eyes of both organizers and participants. 2019 is the year of unusual or offbeat venues: rooftop terraces, theaters, castle rooms… Numerous venues can be opened up for the duration of an event, making it unforgettable.

2020 outlook for events!

The various surveys and analyses that have emerged all point to one clear conclusion: 2020 will be the year of change with continuity.

Major trends (widespread use of mobile applications, democratization of interactivity, personalization of the participant experience) will continue to grow at a steady pace. Event organizers’ budgets are expected to rise slightly, with 2.05% more than in 2019.

The types of events favored by European countries will remain much the same as in 2019. According to the 2020 Global Meetings and Events Forecast by American Express Meetings & Events, product launch parties are the most popular in France, Advisory Boards in Poland and in-house events are on the increase in Spain. Finally, trends for the UK remain, as in previous years, a real unknown due to uncertainties linked to the terms of the Brexit.

More than budget or type of event, the trend for 2020 will be to personalize the participant experience.

One of the most popular methods of the moment is the personalized surprise. Indeed, more and more event organizers are producing content (goodies, mobile app…) or implementing processes (data processing to find out the habits of each participant, personalization of each stage of the event…) to create a closer relationship with their audience.

The key to this evolution also lies in the resources made available to event organizers. These tools make it possible to maintain this growth while trying to minimize the carbon footprint generated by these new practices. Interactivity and personalization mean data galore…

By 2020, each person will generate about 1.7 MB of data per second. The global volume of data stored in 2020 will be approximately 44 zettabytes. And, according to an IDC study, the total volume of stored data will reach 175 zettabytes by 2025.

This major trend also applies to the event industry and requires significant technical adjustments. In fact, a new format is taking a leading role in the world of B2B events. The hybrid event is set to continue its ascent in 2020.

The hybrid event

This allows us to offer an innovative participant experience for those present on site, as well as enabling a wider audience to make sure they don’t miss a thing via their smartphone and a dedicated application.

According to the 2020 Global Meetings and Events Forecast by American Express Meetings & Events, Europe has seen a very significant increase in this format over the past 12 months. The number of event organizers using this service rose from 49% to 66% over the year.

The rollout of the 5G network in Europe to support this growth will therefore be the focus of all attention this year. According to Ericsson, 5G should account for 30% of mobile subscriptions in Europe by 2024.

However, this galloping increase in data consumption is a cause for concern. Data is not carbon neutral, and will force event organizers to rethink the design of their events. Its design before, during and after, to reduce this footprint as much as possible.

This problem has prompted service providers to reinvent themselves. The use of data-saving platforms for B2B events. The use of innovative data centers with state-of-the-art cooling methods, or the widespread use of paperless systems, are among the best ways of reducing the overall energy consumption of your event.

The modular architecture of our Everywhere digital event platform, for example, enables us to drastically reduce data flow. Not only before and during, but also after an event. All this while continuing to offer ever richer and more agile interactive modules.

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