With the passage of time, new and resurgent infectious diseases have not only led to fatal health hazards but have also hit businesses of all sizes causing deep economic repercussions. While infections such as tuberculosis and malaria are endemic to many areas and have daunting but steady burdens on countries, on the other hand, there are others that pose fear and panic mapping to various financial risks for business owners and traders across the globe. One such threat emerges from the recent outbreak of Coronavirus, drastically impacting a number of countries and growing in impact as we speak.
How has Coronavirus impacted businesses?
For those of you who’ve experienced the true essence of the streets of China in the past, it is quite surprising to now pass through the same empty streets that were once overcrowded with all kinds of traffic. As a matter of fact, it is almost impossible for the mind to perceive that the preventive measures towards Coronavirus could lead to China, the largest shareholder in global trade, to be cordoned off from the entire globe. Traveling in an out of China is hindered as airlines around the world have halted service to mainland China. Moreover, popular global food chains have pulled themselves away, Disney has closed down its parks in the region, and theaters have been closed to avoid collecting people in large gatherings. Hence, while the health of those impacted and those exposed is a concern beyond words, the effect of this outbreak has crawled out to global markets, impacting the entire flow of trade. A large number of manufacturers depend on China for components such as consumer products, electronics, pharmaceuticals, and much more. These disruptions have therefore affected more than one stakeholder in the process. Wilmington Trust’s Megan Shue states, “Coronavirus remains one of the biggest risks to the market at this point.”
How can businesses prevent themselves from losing money?
While some catastrophes are beyond the control of mankind, technology plays a significant role in providing man-made alternatives for damage control. This includes medical research and its innovation by the second on one hand, and adapting to solutions for indirect effects such as decreasing trade and dipping business profits on the other hand. The primary challenge that companies are facing is how they can remain connected with people and reduce the impact on their trade. For internal communications, companies are now switching completely to web conferencing tools like Skype, Zoom and Webex. However, for external public interaction, firms are looking towards the possibility of online events to mitigate the losses they bear to face due to a series of cancellations of conferences.
How can virtual events help?
While there is no real substitute to the personal nature of face-to-face interaction, businesses will likely look for alternatives that are cost-effective, quick to migrate to and are can scale easily to make business sense. With this in mind, organizations might find virtual event platforms to be a meaningful alternative arrangement given these limitations. Virtual events typically cost far less than a physical one. Providers with established technology and customer support teams can quickly setup events and assist in porting exhibitors, speakers and audiences over. Finally, such online solutions are built and designed to accommodate high-traffic situations. If a company is still deciding to move to an online-only event or a hybrid one, it’s important to be aware of aspects where virtual events can add value. Here is a list of things online fairs can help with:
- Reach a global audience without any need of commute or travelDue to it’s online nature, audiences that have already registered for the physical event can be asked to access the event online from their home or office. This removes the need to commute to any destination and reduce the anxiety of exposure to infections.
- Connect attendees through live text, audio, video chat toolsNetworking is an integral part of any event as audiences interact with each other around topics of interest. A virtual event can facilitate the communication through group chat rooms and also 1:1 text, audio and video chats.
- Facilitate lectures, talks and keynotes through embedded webinarsA major reason why people sign-up for certain events is to attend keynote speeches or talks from eminent personalities and institutions. A virtual event can help organize this through an integrated webinar where a speaker can present to several attendees in real-time. Most platforms support ability to take questions from audiences after the talk and stage Q&A sessions as well to make the session more interactive.
Conclusion In times of distress, where pandemics, such as presently the Coronavirus, cause businesses to experience unimaginable losses, businesses will need to come up with creative solutions and alternatives to offset losses. Virtual events can prove to be potential solution to minimize the burden placed by the shuttering of physical gatherings. To learn more about hosting an online event, here’s how you can talk to a representative.
At vFairs.com, we strive to build a top-class online event platform that will help event organizers make memorable connections with their target audience. We’re obsessed with taking out the hassle normally associated with physical events and leaving organizers and exhibitors to focus on what’s most important: engagement with the audience.