Q&A from the sales roundtable with Ranju Singh
What challenges did you face in the wake of coronavirus?
- Understanding which events to postpone (depending on the availability of the venue), which had to be cancelled or moved to the following year.
How did you address those challenges and what impact did they have on your customers?
- The ones earlier on in the year when COVID 19 hit us are the shows where the customers were most upset, as we didn’t have a choice but to cancel the event. The teams have spent and are continuing to spend time with our customers to see what we can do to offer them value. Understanding their needs and finding solutions to help them come out of this situation when we return to the new normal.
What opportunities has this uncovered for your business?
- New ways of thinking, understanding our customers, leveraging technology, the digital experience we can offer our clients.
What worked and what didn’t? Have there been any surprising results in the process?
- Some great teams that have put together some digital offerings – however, we have not managed to monetise these – this didn’t work from a commercial side of things. Our ATM platform, however, which expected 1000 meetings a day, saw 3 x as many requests in the meeting platforms, which made us increase the event by an additional day. This worked and we monetised it too.
How do you see implementing this as part of your long term strategy?
- As more people are getting used to working from home and using digital platforms to engage with meetings – it is a great opportunity for new engaging products to be developed. As part of the launches team, I am looking at how to commercialise some of the offerings going forward and we may not launch new physical ones but could potentially launch new verticals or sectors which may complement existing events.
Are you exploring monetising digital content? How?
- Yes for sure, looking at things like cost of leads per acquisition, what the value of these leads would be to clients.
How does this strengthen your offering?
- Like most things, as soon as we can get proof of the value we offer our buyers and suppliers and provide engaging opportunities this will strengthen the offering.
What advice would you give other organisers looking to bridge the gap with digital/ virtual?
- Look for the window of opportunity!
What are the top three things you would tell any organiser trying to create revenue through virtual events during this period?
- Test markets – different industries react to different offerings!
- Understand what the value of the digital offering is. What are companies looking to get out of the digital platforms.
- Recognise that this may be the best opportunity we will ever get to see how this will grow in the future and the source of revenue it can provide.