More evidence that media companies are returning to live in-person events has come from the London Evening Standard which has unveiled its lineup for 2022.
Next year will see the return of the paper’s flagship in-person event, The Evening Standard Theatre Awards, along with other events and conferences which were either mothballed or run virtually in 2020 and 2021.
The events, which are hosted under the banner of ES Live, are supported by a wide range of businesses including Netflix, UBER, TikTok, Citibank, Michael Kors, Christian Louboutin and Chanel.
Charles Yardley, CEO of the Evening Standard, commented: “Since 2020, the LIVE team has pivoted to produce innovative virtual events which demonstrated the value of staying connected remotely. However, now we are able to gather people together in person, we are seizing the opportunity to bring together our audiences at live events designed to reconnect Londoners, spark ideas, showcase innovation and celebrate success.”
After a two-year hiatus caused by the pandemic and the subsequent closure of theatres, the Evening Standard Theatre Awards will return in November 2022.
Other events include the London Rising virtual event series, a three-day celebration of storytelling at the Stories Festival in association with Netflix, the Big Comedy Night in association with Uber, and London Minds, a virtual mental health series in association with Movember.
The Evening Standard is following the template set by other media companies which are beginning to return to live events, but simultaneously are continuing to offer virtual online access. London-based company Tortoise Media, which pivoted to virtual events in spring 2020, has begun to offer its members access to in-person conferences as well as the option of joining online.
A wide range of b2b conferences will return in 2022 including FIPP’s own World Media Congress, which will be held in Lisbon in June.
It seems that media industry professionals are also ready to return to in-person events, Recent research from LinkedIn, highlighted how 85% of marketers had held a virtual event in the last year and 28% said that between 91-100% of their events are now virtual. However, 78% said they wanted in-person events to return to a primary role once it’s safe to do so.
The full line-up of Evening Standard events includes:
- The SME XPO and Watercooler exhibition – February 2022
- Progress 1000 – March 2022
- London Minds – May 2022
- Future Cities – Spring 2022
- New Homes Awards – June 2022
- Comedy Event – June 2022
- Stories Festival – September 2022
- Theatre Awards – November 2022