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Survey Results

The Impact of COVID-19 on the Event Industry


We surveyed our event industry partners to better understand how the pandemic has impacted them directly. We’re sharing our insights to paint a picture of the current state of the event industry from both people who work in it.

Are people comfortable with hosting and attending events?

Short answer, yes, but it varies based on the target. 

Event Planners

We learned that the majority (82%) of event planners are comfortable with hosting events within the next few months. At aVenue, we’ve incorporated event safety measures and custom safety protocol so our clients and their guests are comfortable enough to let their hair down and keep their mask on.


Corporate clients are comfortable with attending events, but hesitant about hosting events of their own. We think others want to see how different companies are mitigating risk by putting safety precautions and social distancing in place before they host their own events. 

Event Suppliers & Convention Exhibitors

Everyone from these two targets is eager to get back to servicing and attending events with the addition of sanitizing stations, increased levels of cleanliness, and other safety precautions in place to keep everyone safe. 

How much of a hit has the event industry’s revenue taken this year?

There is no doubt that most small businesses and face-to-face industries have taken a hit, but what does that look like for an industry designed to bring people together?

96% of our participants said that they would (or already have) seen at least a 25% decrease in revenue for 2020. 

We also recorded that 75% of respondents have six months or less to keep their businesses operating at the same level, pre-pandemic before they have to make hard decisions. While 22% have already made some tough decisions. 

What does 2021 look like for the event industry?

Both event planners and suppliers believe that revenue will continue to drop in the new year as a result of the pandemic, however, corporate clients (which are usually the people they serve) say that they only plan on decreasing their event spending by less than 25%.

Looking ahead with Digital Events

There is something to be said about the day and age we live in. We’re constantly connected without having to be in the same place. We can work, learn, teach, hang out with friends and family, and even host a party without being in the same place. 

We’ve seen our clients offer both in-person and virtual options to accommodate their guests’ comfort-level without experiencing a significant decrease in event attendance or hosting too many people at once.

Our survey results say that our participants agree that it’s better to go digital or offer a digital component instead of canceling an event. 

74% of respondents said that they are hosting either partial or full online events in Q3 and Q4 of this year. This keeps the momentum going for event participants as well as maintaining morale by giving people things to look forward to. Life looks different, but that doesn’t mean we have to stop celebrating our accomplishments and milestones. 

Looking into 2021, 65% of participants believe this trend will continue moving forward. But events must go on! 

Key Takeaways – TL;DR

For all you skimmers out there, we got you! Here are the three key takeaways from our survey.

  1. Hybrid events will continue for the rest of 2020 and into 2021
  2. Participants are eager to host, attend, and participate in modified events without a vaccine
  3. Although revenue for event professionals is anticipated to decrease, Corporations only plan on scaling back by a small margin (<25%).

Thank you again for everyone who took the time to participate in our survey, if you’re interested in viewing the full report, click here.


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