Event technology provider Cvent wants to make it very clear that the death of virtual meetings has been greatly exaggerated. Case in point: Cvent Connect, the company's annual user conference that is currently in session as a hybrid event, has attracted 3,000 people in-person to Las Vegas and an additional 7,000 attendees online.
Still, the nature of virtual events is undoubtedly evolving, executives acknowledged during the company's product roadmap session. Rather than serving as substitutes for extended conferences, digital events are now more often being used as touchpoints for year-round engagement.
"Virtual events aren't going anywhere," explained Cvent vice president of product management McNeel Keenan. "In fact, in the last year 29 percent of the registration volume across our entire platform came from virtual events... The hype may have faded, but virtual events remain a critical part of a modern event program."
That said, when Cvent's virtual event platform was rolled out quickly in 2020 it was to handle the torrential demand for robust pandemic-era events. According to Keenan, at the height of the pandemic the average number of sessions for each of these online events peaked at a whopping 29. Contrast that with the last quarter, when the average number of sessions for virtual events on the platform was two. The "virtual events" platform — whether Cvent's or others' — has started to feel like overkill in many situations.
The new Cvent Webinar speaks to this latest shift, and aims to simplify matters. Among the key features of Cvent Webinar:
- Streamlined, reinvented attendee experience
Registration is embedded on a fully branded, single-page website. Livestreams are produced in Cvent Studio, which was rolled out in conjunction with the virtual events platform to elevate production value. The suite of attendee engagement features familiar to users of Cvent's virtual events platform is included as well, featuring reactions, chat, Q&A, polling and surveys.
- "Radically simplified" organizer experience
Given the quantity and frequency of webinars typically run across an organization, setup has been redesigned for ease of use. "It has to be dead simple," Keenan said of this market need. "It should never require training and users should be able to build and launch a webinar in five minutes or less."
- Per-user pricing model
The Premium version of Cvent Webinar can handle an unlimited number of registrants and webinars, allowing enterprises to grow and scale their webinar programs. Free and Pro versions are also available, meaning that anyone with a Cvent account can set up and run a webinar.
- Built on the Cvent platform
All Cvent users can gain immediate access to webinar functionality. All registration and program data can be readily integrated into an organization's meetings program — and with many marketing platforms, CRM systems and analytics tools that comprise MarTech stacks.
Cvent Webinar is now available.