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ISE-commisioned research shows value of in-person events

98% of AV professionals say they've missed attending face-to-face industry get togethers

According to research commissioned by Integrated Systems Europe, 98% of AV professionals have missed attending in-person AV industry events. The research, completed in October of last year, was carried out by Fusion Insight and Strategy to gauge interest in face-to-face, digital and hybrid event formats.

ISE wanted to explore the general feeling around face-to-face events in 2021, with research consisting of a web-based survey sent to ISE’s database and a collection of in-depth interviews with ISE exhibitors. Over 700 (711) responded to the survey, with 95% having attended ISE before (60% in February 2020). Respondents came from 96 countries (71% based in Europe, 13% North America, 8% Asia, 5% Middle-East, 1% Central and South America, 1% Australia and New Zealand, 1% Africa).

The research overwhelmingly endorses a return to in-person events as soon as it is safe and practical to do so. Findings show that 98% of the research audience missed attending events, with 42% of these missing meeting and networking with people the most, 32% missing the live experience of products, and 21% missing the direct exchange with suppliers and customers.

Almost 70% of the audience is ready to attend in-person trade shows and 57% would be ready to visit international ones. Given that this research was conducted before news of a viable vaccine, it shows a desire to get back out to physical events again.

“We felt it very important to listen to our industry in shaping our offering for 2021 and so we commissioned independent market research specialists to conduct this intelligence project for us,” explained Mike Blackman, managing director of Integrated Systems Events. “The results clearly demonstrate that, for an industry at the cutting edge of immersive technologies, there is no substitute to the touch-see-hear experiences that are at the heart of the AV industry and shows such as ISE.”

David Labuskes, CTS, CAE, RCDD, CEO of AVIXA added: “The annual calendar of trade shows provides a rhythm and cadence to our ever-changing and advancing industry. As individuals move in and out of roles within the industry, these shows have always provided a touchpoint that allows us to reconnect with the people we do business with. I am certain that all of our past and future attendees are anxious to meet again in person soon, and the research reinforces that emotion. The incalculable value of ISE to the exhibitors as a platform for engagement and thought leadership and to the attendees as a community from which to learn and grow compels us to do everything in our power to ensure that there will be a safe return of ISE in 2021 and an exciting debut in Barcelona.”

ISE was forced to postpone its Barcelona debut in February 2021 due to the global pandemic. In the absence of in-person events, there has been a sharp rise in digital events to fulfil education, networking, and profiling agendas. ISE launched its own series of digital events late last year, and RISE Spotlight has been welcomed by the industry.

Integrated Systems Europe (ISE) 2021 is scheduled to take place at the Fira de Barcelona, Gran Vía, on 1-4 June 2021.