Real or virtual events?

Everyone likes going to a good event - like the Learnming and Technology event yesterday. You meet people you know, and people you do not. And I have always found L&T great for that. It is far more rewarding than, for example, just being part of this online group (no offence!).  But if you are like me, you probably get invited to free events all the time, and you do not have the time to read all the invites - let alone go to the events. But which wrok better real or virtual events and when, and what are the factors that make them better. What are the respective fall off rates for real events compared with online events? There is still a no-showrate for paid for evets, and it usually higher for free events. Are there good resources you would recommend to get it right?

I mentioned to a few people at the lively discussion in one of the smaller sessions yesterday that we are hosting a breakfast event at the Embassy of Ireland, London on 18th July with Bersin & Associates’ Principal Analyst David Mallon on M-Learning and the Next Generation of E-Learning.

Bersin & Associates research shows that the world of corporate learning is evolving, especially in the forms and uses of e-learning. Feedback from both e-learning creators and consumers is clear:  the lengthy page-turner is out.   In its place is a next generation of e-learning that includes video, on-demand digital libraries, the virtual classroom, and of course, mobile learning.

In this presentation, Bersin & Associates Principal Analyst David Mallon provides an overview of the past and current state of m-learning and e-learning. He will share lessons learned, best practice examples, and guidance for other organizations looking to deliver learning on-the-go and in all of the same modalities is use by their audiences every day.

Contact me via if this is of interest. Let me know the facts that spark your interest - the venue? the reputation of Bersin Associates or of David Mallon? The topic? The free breakfast?

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  • Hi Gavin - A really interesting post. I found the Large Private Sector session particularly insightful due to the quality and liveliness of debate, combined with new connections made and to me this exemplifies the value of "real" rather than virtual events. I believe that this would have been difficult to replicate virtually where I have generally found the quality of interaction to be poorer and suffering from narrow scope and events as a whole lacking a sense of "occasion".

    Conversely, I do believe there is significant scope in virtual events to raise attendance levels by removing accomodation/travel costs and by enabling tracking of attendees for lead generation. I feel providing content-rich material is key to optimising the success of virtual events e.g. including Q&A's, panel discussions and by ensuring sessions are easy to navigate. Just a few thoughts to get started!


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