Splash’s 2022 Outlook Shows an Events Industry Poised for Rebound, Need to Embrace New Technology

January 12, 2022

As event professionals embark on 2022 amid ever-evolving circumstances of the pandemic, a new research report released by Splash, an event marketing technology company, points to a robust year for in-person, virtual and hybrid events through insights on event strategies, event technology, budgets and attendee attitudes.

The Getting Back to Business: An Outlook on Events in 2022 report, a continuation of Splash’s 2021 version of the same name, is based on a November 2021 survey of nearly 3,400 event professionals and event attendees. It provides insights on how event professionals, event attendees and companies are adapting to disruptions during the pandemic, navigating new challenges and preparing for a changed meetings and events landscape in 2022, and the need to stay relevant with the latest tools.

"The year ahead looks promising despite all the challenges caused by a two-year pandemic," said Eric Holmen, CEO of Splash. "Our latest report indicates more enthusiasm than ever for taking advantage of business events, as more people plan to attend in-person, virtual or hybrid events in 2022.”

Holmen underscored the importance of investing in the right technology to deliver streamlined event marketing and execution if companies want to host more effective, impactful events.

Following are key finding of the report:

  • An in-person rebound is coming: 50% of companies plan to host more in-person events in 2022, and 64% of respondents are already registered to attend two or more in-person events.
  • Virtual events are here to stay: 92% of companies continued hosting virtual events even when in-person events resumed, 46% plan to host more virtual events in 2022 than they did in 2021, and 64% of respondents are already registered to attend two or more virtual events.
  • Hybrid events are part of the new normal: 79% of companies expect to host hybrid events in 2022.
  • Interest in events of all types is on the rise: 60% of attendees plan to attend conferences, 51% plan to attend networking events, 36% plan to attend product launches and demonstrations, 35% plan to attend association meetings, and 34% plan to attend industry expos.
  • It's time to embrace new technology: 67% of companies use the same event technology as before COVID-19, and 59% plan to increase their investment in 2022.
  • A budget bounce: 38% of companies increased their event marketing budgets compared to only 28% in 2020.

The findings also address ongoing challenges companies are experiencing with events and keys to success for 2022.

The report concludes that as the events landscape evolves, companies would be wise to utilize increased budgets to replace tools that are no longer sufficient by seeking new technology and solutions. Creating memorable experiences for attendees and achieving measurable business results is key, according to the report, and whether planning small, large, virtual or in-person events, investing in the right technology will be critical for improving event ROI, lead generation opportunities and sales pipeline success.

Download the full report here.

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