Covid-19 impact on the event industry is huge. Less than two months ago, we shared insights to help professionals protect themselves from the outbreak. Today, with most shows canceled, the challenge is different – and for many, it results in downtimes, confinement at home, and no vision towards future shows. So what to do?
The forced downtime from Covid-19 represents also an opportunity for exhibitors and event industry workers. Like for many folks who year-round run from show to show, exhibitors have often very little time to sit down, clear pending tasks and reflect.
For once, there is no ASAPs to deal with. This, in the event business, is a luxury. Here are four ToDo’s for fellow event professionals, our clients, to make the most of the Covid-19 trade show cancellations.
Clear your email inbox
Like many, when we are on shows, emails pile up – it takes diligence, sometime even endurance to simply deal with the back-log. Many emails just simply never make it to the reply button and either stay in the inbox forever or head straight to the trash/archives.
Now is the time to take the time and clear this inbox.
Seriously. Respond to all emails that have a pending reply, and reach out to your contacts to see how you can still help. The professional gains will be immense – you’ll no longer be the person who never replies, how cool is that!
Make a list of things to investigate
Making changes, improving things, looking for new suppliers takes time. We know about this, because at Event Analytics, we spend approximately 15% of our total work-time researching event technologies. We constantly compare, test and sample supplier solutions to find the best technologies to serve our customers best and stay ahead of the curve.
Now that you have some unforeseen spare time – and so do suppliers. Make a list of your top challenges and instead of asking one supplier, reach out to 10 of them.
Read case studies and white papers, find the best solution that will truly add value to your next exhibit. It’s time to be ready and make some serious upgrades to your event capabilities.
Look at your data, revise your strategy, update your plan
Data is everywhere. Exhibitors and event professionals have been “playing” with data for a while – mostly for reporting purposes though. This Covid-19 No-Show period is an opportunity to take a step back to improve or rethink your data strategy.
- What data do you presently have access to from exhibits?
- How accurate is that data?
- Are there ways to improve quantity, accuracy, quality of the collected data?
- What is the data actually used for (reporting, decision making, budgeting, other)?
- How does it add value to your employer?
- What’s in it for visitors?
- Is it worth collecting it?
- How invasive is the collection process for visitors? And could it be improved? Streamlined?
- Can the collection process be automated?
And the list continues …
We use data every day here at Event Analytics. While it’s our job to make sense of data for our customers, we do know that some data never makes it to our analysts. Sometimes it’s too confidential or sensitive, sometimes nobody even knows it’s there.
Did you know we can use any source of data source for our show reports?
Lead scanners, CRM & mailing, Social media, Google analytics, etc.
Make a plan, focus on the data you need and has real value. Stay lean and efficient.
Everything is going to be fine
Finally, breath. This is going to be a tough time for many of us. We’ll have family and friends who will be contaminated. There will be suffering, and most likely financial stresses for many of us.
Let us be compassionate and responsible. We should all take the time to help each other and support those who we can in any way possible.
Business isn’t everything. Life is.
If you have questions about Covid-19, please always refer to the advice from your government, health professionals or the CDC.