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The Evolution Of The Events Industry

Ollie Irwin

15 March 2021

With the welcomed announcement that the UK could be returning to a semblance of normal life on April 12th, the live events that define our calendar year now seem within tangible grasp. However, sources suggest many organisations will be welcoming a much smaller number of attendees in these initial stages. How can organisers continue to engage with audiences who can’t physically attend their events during this period?

Read on for the best-in-class examples we’ve investigated on how brands are continuing to recreate the magic of live events and what important lessons can be learnt from their approach…

Bicep Live Global Stream Saatchi Gallery

From initiatives such as Tate Britain’s virtual gallery tours to Moscow Garage Museum’s movie series, the arts industry has demonstrated innovation since the beginning of the pandemic – using new technology to communicate with audiences in a time where physical gallery visits aren’t possible.

With many galleries hosting paid digital events as a way of generating much needed revenue, Saatchi Gallery’s recent global stream with Irish Electro duo Bicep, was broadcast in more than 70 countries and 5 different time zones. Tickets to watch the event were a considerable £13.50, and so audiences are not only hungry for content that recreates the excitement of live music and art, they’re willing to invest money into initiatives to secure the fate of their favourite venues. Adding visuals to accompany the music and Bicep’s decision to remix their original material, fans were offered much more than a simple cut and paste version of their live shows.

With a number of live performances and exhibitions planned in the coming months, even as we slowly move into looser lockdown restrictions galleries will continue to offer guests the option to experience this type of virtual event in addition to their normal programme schedule. Interested in learning more about how the art world is digitising their events in 2021? Make sure you sign up for The Other Art Fair’s first digital exhibition!

BT Sport App Matchday Experience

BT Sport recently made their app available to all paying customers with the intention of revolutionising the way audiences experience watching live sport. Alongside a split-screen viewing function, augmented reality features are recreating the atmosphere of physically watching the game with 360° angles not accessible during a normal live broadcast, as well as the special edition of BTS scenes from some stadium areas. By updating the features of their app not only have BT Sport innovated their offering, they’ve provided football fans with different touch points to encourage engagement in a time where the excitement of watching games from stadiums isn’t possible.

The magic of sport and its culture is its ability to bring friends, family and communities together, and as we look forward to the Olympics, Euros and Wimbledon, we expect to see other broadcasters and sponsors making use of VR technology. Innovation in this area will also create new and diverse ways for brands to talk to audiences. Watch this space…

GTA Online Moodymann at the Music Locker

The gaming industry has shown unparalleled levels of digital innovation in recreating the brilliance of live events during lockdown. First seen through Fortnite’s record-breaking events with DJ Marshmello and Travis Scott, we’re now witnessing other gaming organisations such as Rockstar Games following suit.

On New Year’s Eve, the brand invited guests to a party with cult DJ Moodymann, hosted in their virtual nightclub The Music Locker. Taking design cues from Grand Theft Auto’s signature underground aesthetic, the dimly lit nightclub was a huge hit, the brand hosting a series of other virtual events in the digital space with artists like Berlin collective Keinemusik and Palms Trax.

Previously appealing only to music purists, VR technology has added a visual narrative to livestreams which also engages the mainstream audience. Audio content alone is no longer enough, brands must also demonstrate innovation in the visual representation of these events to cut through…

The last year has forced the events industry to revolutionise the digitalisation of their output and long gone are the days of a linear recap of a production or a basic live stream. We believe brands will continue to utilise VR technology and augmented reality content to capture audiences, exposing themselves to legions of new fans along the way.

Want to learn more about the ways that this can be achieved? Drop us a line!