Is it Possible to Run an Event without a Physical Venue?

Last Updated on October 7, 2021

It seems like an undeniable truth: if you don’t have a venue in which to run your event, there is no event.  After all, you need a place for your keynotes. You need booths for your vendors, caterers for your guests, a green room for your volunteers, and…

Honestly? I’m not certain any of that is even necessary. All you really need is the right software.

I should explain. See, we’re living in a society that’s increasingly virtualized. Thanks to improvements in networking technology, what might have been impossible fifteen years ago is completely plausible today. I’m talking about more than simply having a few video keynotes – I’m talking about a fully digital, venue-less event.

As you may have already surmised, there are several advantages involved in running such an event. Chief among these is cost. With an online event, you’re really only going to need to worry about licensing fees, bandwidth, and marketing. That’s pretty much it – since you’ve no venue, you don’t need to worry about booking fees or security; travel expenses and catering/equipment costs are a non-issue, as well.

On top of that, you’ve potentially got the capacity to present your event to a far wider audience than you would if it were situated in a physical venue. Since you’re running things online, this means that pretty much anyone can attend, regardless of location.

Last, but certainly not least, running a virtual event requires significantly less logistical finagling than a traditional conference. While you’re still going to have to do some running around, you’re still going to find yourself doing less work than you would otherwise.

Sounds like a pretty sweet deal so far, doesn’t it?

But…how exactly does it work?

Honestly, it depends on exactly what you want to do.  You could go for something simple, and use an application such as GoToMeeting. Or you could go for broke, and set up a full virtual convention. The technology does exist for something to that effect.

Let me give an example.

A few years back, I was invited to attend an online convention on the behalf of one of my clients, a video game news site. The convention – geared towards World of Warcraft players – used a virtual client known as Utherverse to simulate an event site. Attendees all created avatars before entering into the client proper, at which point they simply navigated to the convention hall for the conference.

Now…Utherverse had the unfortunate distinction of being an adult game client (something which I only found out after setting foot in the conference hall; it was kind of an awkward day), but the basic concept behind what the runners were trying to do was a strong one: if you’ve the time, the technical know-how, and the platform, then it’s definitely worthwhile to look into virtualizing your venue.

It goes without saying that you need a venue in order to run an event. With all the advances we’ve seen over the past few years in networking and computing technology, however, that venue doesn’t necessarily need to be a physical one. Use the right software and platform, and your event can be every bit as incredible as if your attendees were really there.