In-person events will bounce back, according to the “B2B Event Industry Outlook Report 2022: Charting Success Amid Evolving Expectations,” published by Emerald X, a builder of dynamic, market-driven platforms that integrate live events with B2B digital solutions. 

The number of in-person events planned for 2022 and participation in such events is anticipated to rise from 2021. However, rises do not entirely compensate for 2019 vs. 2021 decreases. 

Emerald’s content strategy and marketing agency Content4Demand, surveyed over 1,000 B2B event planners, vendors/providers, and attendees in the United States and Canada. 

The goal was to figure out how events influence business expansion in an industry that is both recovering and changing. The second part of the study focused on how constant connectivity is driving year-round engagement demand. 

“Our inaugural B2B Events Industry Outlook details industry participant outlook during an unprecedented pandemic-induced economic reset of our industry,” said Issa Jouaneh, Executive Vice President, Emerald, in a statement. 

Key takeaways include: 

  • In 2022, in-person event management and attendance are anticipated to increase, but they will not fully compensate for 2019 vs. 2021 declines. 
  • According to the 2022 growth forecast, the number of in-person events and participants is expected to rise by 50% from 2020. 
  • The rise in sales pipeline attributed to events — live and digital — will compensate for the slump from 2019. 
  • The No. 1 priority for the future was maintaining and improving the quality of relationships and interaction levels beyond actual events. 
  • The majority of survey groups are looking for a dynamic model to combine physical and digital data. 
  • Organizers should enable and assist E-commerce transactions, according to both 84% of survey respondents and 67% of B2B vendors/providers and planners polled. 

Andrew Gaffney, President of Emerald’s G3 Communications division, commented in a statement, “Events have served as the central part of pipeline building strategies for most B2B brands, and while the survey responses suggest that will continue, there are evolving expectations around how events will guide more of the entire buying journey.” 

“While the core, in-person aspect of an event will remain critical, companies appear to be looking for year-round engagement, diversification, commerce, and community. Event organizers would do well to consider using content to build dialogue, meet buyers where they live, and make it a more seamless process to move from discovery to evaluation to selection,” added Gaffney 

You may review the full report here