What is a virtual event?
We hear this term a lot lately so let’s jump right in.

Event videography and photography are now more relevant than ever before, let’s take a look why. The new term virtual events is being thrown around a lot lately, it’s kind of cool and catchy, but what does it really mean? Are events that different from what they used to be? Our team at OD Media have been capturing events through photography and videography for many years, from conferences, to sports to music festivals and everything in between and so far in 2020 we have seen the event landscape has had a drastic change. Although the fundamentals are still very much the same from where we are sitting with the event space moving from physical places to your office or living room. Performers are taking the stage with no audience except for us as the camera crew, conferences are taking place with guest speakers sharing their message to a select few people in a venue or to the comfort of your home via an online stream.

People need to attend an event and be social, and with the physical limitations in place the world has gone online and coined the term virtual. Thankfully our society is well integrated and au fait with social media which has become part of our everyday lives. At its core social media is the platform where people connect and socialize. This is where photographers and videographers fill the gap, we bring the images and the event experience to everyone who cannot be there in person.

If you haven’t connected the dots yet the new landscape of events looks like this:

  • A host holds an event, usually at a venue and people attend
  • Content is created and delivered through various online platforms
  • People consume the event content
  • They network and socialize

The new “venues” are Zoom, Facebook, YouTube, Microsoft teams, Twitter, Instagram and even WhatsApp. The content is delivered and people are left to network and interact via social media, either on their own through comments and chat room features, or directly through sharing contact details.

How can OD Media help
We have always been filming and photographing events and with a strong background in live streaming it makes sense to just keep the ball rolling for our customers and help them with the solutions to get their events online. Whether it is delivering photos or working with your to deliver a live stream to various platforms.

What is a Virtual or Hybrid event
This is where you host a traditional event say with some guests in attendance, perhaps a guest speaker and a panel discussion. There may only be a limited number of guests allowed in person at the event, so we take the event online, as well as bring those speakers who cannot attend in person to the event through online platform integration. A guest speaker can now connect from anywhere in the world live and deliver their message online and to the big screen for the audience at the event. The phrase “to zoom in” now has new meaning.

The upside to this is that busy professionals no longer have to travel, and can spend more time working on important tasks or even at home with their families. Social distancing can take place and allows more people to attend the events online, who would otherwise be hindered by travel restrictions.

This sounds great what is the downside then?
Well, “zoom fatigue” has become a real thing. For us we have noticed the travel experience is lost a bit for those who enjoy traveling the world to network and create new business opportunities, but we are optimistic this will return. The power of networking in person is what is missing most and this has been replaced with online introductions and networking.

Things are not going to change that much, but the integration of live platforms, zoom calls and remote guest speakers is going to become much more prevalent. We are certain many people are longing for the travel adventures and meeting again in person, while some of us are super excited about the adoption of the new online formats. Donning a suit jacket and tie with our pajama pants and zooming away.

Whatever it is the future of events is still a little uncertain, but the need for connecting remains at the center of the equation and we humans are pretty resourceful. We will adapt and connect and keep building friendships and relationships through the tools at our finger tips.