Commercial Integrator: InfoComm 2020 Goes Virtual

What the shift from in-person to virtual events means for the AV industry.

AVIXA is in the crosshairs of what CEO David Labuskes calls “the better normal”. In response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, AVIXA is transforming InfoComm 2020 from an in-person event originally scheduled for Las Vegas in mid-June to a virtual event dubbed InfoComm 2020 Connected, kicking off June 16.

“We didn’t want to abandon all the opportunity for connectedness,” says Labuskes on AVIXA’s decision to launch InfoComm 2020 Connected when it became clear the in-person trade show wasn’t a viable alternative.

InfoComm 2020 Connected will feature virtual trade show booths, product spotlights, streamed and recorded education sessions, matchmaking through AI, lightning rounds of side-by-side comparisons and even karaoke and other networking opportunities.

“I’m looking at this to accelerate and further deliver on a digitally enhanced real life,” says Labuskes. “It’s about retooling our education, taking the lessons we’ve learned and extending those beyond this show.”

But what does this mean for the wider AV industry, integrators and vendors? The possibilities are being embraced by many companies who are reshaping the traditional ways to connect in-person and thinking outside of the box to retain engagement and networking potential via a virtual event.

Diversified Senior VP of Global Marketing, Anthony Cuellar, says the company will face a challenge to replicate the connections its leaders make during InfoComm 2020, including through its annual VIP reception and meetings with manufacturers–but that the company has been working to overcome this challenge by building and nurturing connections across many touch points in the last few months.

Diversified has been hosting webinars and created a business continuity page on its website.

“That got us into the rhythm of communicating with our clients more regularly,” says Cuellar. “It’s odd but it’s made us better in some ways. It’s made us more high-touch.”

The face-to-face conversations at the show are nice but not necessary, he says.

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