Six in 10 (59 percent) of more than a thousand event professionals in a new survey believe that accessibility, diversity and sustainability are crucial aspects of the events they choose to attend—a particularly significant statement as it indicates a shift in the priorities of event attendees, as well as an increased awareness of the importance of accessibility, diversity and sustainability in the event industry.
The new survey and report from virtual and hybrid event management tech firm Hubilo Technologies explores the thoughts and beliefs of event pros about environmental, social, governance (ESG) and diversity equity and inclusion (DEI) initiatives for events.
“The event paradigm is changing. Not only are events—virtual, hybrid, and in-person alike—critical to driving revenue growth, but they also can serve as ways to expand opportunity for underrepresented people, demonstrate commitment to a sustainable future and elevate unheard voices,” said Vaibhav Jain, Hubilo CEO and co-founder, in a news release. “Our research highlights the importance of understanding attendees’ needs and creating events that meet those needs. It’s clear that accessibility, diversity and sustainability are no longer optional, but essential.”
The results also demonstrated Millennials (ages 30-44) are most concerned about the environment and accessibility and want to be seen as sensitive to these issues. Many would be more likely to attend a virtual event if it meant more people were included, or the environment was taken into consideration during planning.
Events are not just about gathering people, they are about creating a space where everyone feels connected, welcomed and valued, so accessibility, diversity, and sustainability should be at the forefront of every event. When we create a platform that is accessible to all, we give everyone an equal opportunity to participate and contribute their unique perspectives. It’s important to know that the events you attend are not only enjoyable but also inclusive and environmentally conscious.
Additionally, the results show that meeting audiences where they’re at increases the chances of getting a message in front of them. One of the most accessible ways to reach people is on their mobile phones. Audiences are on their phones, even when they’re physically present at an event. This is especially true for Millennials—in fact, nearly all (99 percent) of the majority Millennial respondents who answered the survey did so from a mobile phone or tablet. Capturing future audiences requires mobile attendance options for events.
Planning for these preferences—accessibility, diversity, sustainability and the ability to log on from anywhere—will make events more accessible to more audiences now and in the future.