Saroosh Gull, CEO of Eventcombo, looks at how the NFTs and the Metaverse trends are impacting the events industry, and looks at the future of the industry:
The concepts of NFTs and the Metaverse have become immensely popular topics trending across different sectors; from tech to business, and now the events industry. With the industry still recovering from the shift to new virtual spaces brought on by the pandemic, discussions are shifting to the future of the industry, and how the Metaverse is displacing the industry once again.
The pandemic has highlighted the malleability of the events industry, forcing an industry previously reliant on face-to-face interactions for success to adapt in an unprecedented time when people were isolated to their homes. Two years on, we have witnessed sustained demand for improved virtual spaces, and how events have succeeded virtually in engaging with audiences.
It’s likely that we will see a steady progression to more immersive platforms year on year, as current virtual event platforms do not have the interactive capabilities that event organisers desire, with chat functions and breakout rooms only taking events so far.
One such concept is the Metaverse, which can be explained as a 3D online virtual environment that aims to blend physical and virtual worlds, allowing users the chance to interact in real-time. Users are able to network and connect with virtual communities and explore new dimensions using augmented reality.
In an ideal scenario, the technology will enable users to feel like they are physically present, and when an individual registers themselves for a virtual event, digital assets – such as NFTs – will give them a means of entry or holder access in these virtual events.
The role of NFTs as virtual tokens will make your attendance at events feel like a unique collectable experience, one that cannot be duplicated, though they can be exchanged and traded for other assets in the Metaverse.
Both concepts are still in their infancy in terms of events planning, but there is still a growing debate over how online events will continue to grow and thrive, with public demand for them persistent. We’ve witnessed how virtual events improve the accessibility of events and have opened previously localised events up to global audiences. I believe the Metaverse is only the next step for current virtual events
Metaverse components, like virtual reality, augmented reality and 3D holographic avatars, are elements which would allow users to feel more immersed and interact with each other in more authentic ways. Attendees would be able to present themselves however they like, and Metaverse events can easily accommodate attendees from all over the globe without limitations from the vendor or venue. This could extend the capabilities of an event’s environment design, and open new revenue streams through different upgrade packages for the event, which also would create new NFTs.
While the concept has its downfalls, like all budding technological evolutions, it can certainly be said that it won’t be a substitute for face-to-face experiences. There is great potential for the Metaverse from a remote perspective, and it should be viewed as bringing audiences together in a virtual world, in addition to physical gatherings.
I truly think that the Metaverse and NFTs are only the tip of the iceberg for the events industry, and I am excited to see how the industry will continue to develop and transition in the upcoming years.
Eventcombo, founded in 2015, is an Event-as-a-Service (EaaS) shift-left #SinglePlatform event technology, event management and attendee management platform for in-person, hybrid, and virtual events.. www.eventcombo.com