Authored by Mazhar Nadiadwala, Managing Director, Dome Entertainment
2018 was a major milestone for the Indian event industry, a year that saw a further consolidation of the remarkable progress the sector has made over the last decade. This periodwas characterised by insatiable growth, both with regard to scale and revenue, the adoption of revolutionary new technologies, the implementation of ground-breaking ideas, and perhaps most importantly – a stronger shift towards customer-centrism. According to a report by Ernst & Young, the event industry in India is projected to grow to INR 10,000 crore by 2020, from just INR 5,600 in 2016. This has resulted in a 16% CAGR, greatly surpassing the growth of most other industries, including the Media and Entertainment sector.
Such phenomenal growth can largely be attributed to the radical new changes that eventplanners, a breed of individuals famous for their risk-taking penchant, have implemented across all stages of the process i.e. pre-event, event, and post-event. Here are some of the most significant developments that the industry experienced in 2018:
Glocalisation is the customisation of international products, services, or ideas, to suit the unique requirements of a particular region, e.g. the paneer burgers that McDonalds serves exclusively in India. While glocalisation has long been a common term in marketing, its application by the events industry has been fairly lacking until recently. 2018 saw event planners adapt international concepts ranging from Broadway plays to music festivals to become more palatable to Indian audiences. It is for this reason, that Indians who watched the indigenous production of the popular musical Aladdin we were treated to a Genie who spoke in Hindi, and music fans who went to NH7 were exposed to music from several different parts of India, as opposed to simply English and Hindi songs.Glocalisation allows companies to connect more strongly with their audience, and it’s a promising sign that event planners are in sync with the marketers.
360 Degree Engagement
Widespread social media use, increasing smartphone proliferation, and access to high speed internet, have empowered event planners to directly connect and engage with their audience long before the event ever begins. This has been used to create spectacularhype around events and enables audience members themselves to engage with marketers during the event through live-streams, pictures, tweets, and other social media engagements, greatly multiplying the reach of each property and generating substantial, free coverage of the proceedings of the event in the process.
Advancements In Technology
Technology has had a phenomenal influence of the Indian events industry, and created possibilities and opportunities that would have been unimaginable just a few years ago. Automated marketing processes i.e. systems powered by artificial intelligencehave been instrumental in helping event organisers stay relevant and connected with their audiences through specific targeting. Online registrations through third party websites like bookmyshow.com and Insider have greatly increased the ease with which customers can find and sign up for events that interest them, a phenomenon which has immensely benefitted niche, small scale events companies who may not have had any affordable means to reach their audience in decades past. Technology has also enabled people who weren’t present at the event to enjoy it, possibly even more so than the live audience. The Netflix special with Kanan Gill and IPL being two great examples of the same. The advent of 3D and hologram technologies has enabled the broadcast of events in 3D. This means that a personcan experience an event as though they were in the live audience i.e. in 3D, through the use of a VR headset.
Creativity And Customisability
For much of the past, most events of a particular class, i.e. weddings, exhibitions, and expos, had very similar, often indistinguishable, templates that event planners stuck to religiously. Today, given people’s greatly increased expectations as a result of international travel, a high standard of living, and a social-media driven culture, this mediocrity and complacency is no longer an option. Event planners are continuously being pushed towards churning out more creative and radical works, resulting some genuine masterpieces such as the Broadway style production of Aladdin and the One Republic concert earlier this year. Many planners even offer customers the chance to choose the theme to their own event, especially in the case of weddings. This has resulted in an entirely new generation of indoor- weddings, parties, and gatherings that have a uniquely personal touch for those who commission them, often exploring thoroughly original themes and ideas. The pressure on events companies to explore new avenues has resulted in the rapid expansion of e-sports tournaments, resulting in competitions for games like PUBG, CS, and DOTA, becoming commonplace.
With issues like pollution, deforestation, and climate change receiving the massive media attention they so rightfully deserve, many events companies and venues have decided to their bit by making their activities more environmentally friendly. This change has been in the form of using power saving equipment like LED lights in favour of traditional light bulbs, installing solar panels to reduce dependence of the grid, and even recycling waste following the event itself. Of all the changes that the event industry has undergone the past year, I find this shift towards more sustainable and responsible practices the most refreshing.
2018 was a good year for the Indian event industry, and a strong indicator of what the future holds. We can expect to see technology and new ideas change the sector like never before as well as an increasingly niche set of events with their fair share of loyal audiences like stand-up comedy gigs, e-sports tournaments, comic book conventions, and indie music concerts. Innovation and risk will drive the industry, as they always have, and customers can be assured that their experiences will only get better from here on in.
The author of this article is Mazhar Nadiadwala , Managing Director, Dome Entertainment. Mazhar Nadiadwala is a part of the most renowned film industry family – The Nadiadwala’s. With an extensive experience of more than 20 years, Mazhar has now added another feather into his portfolio venturing into the business of premium venues in the position of Managing Director of Dome India. With Dome, his vision is to give India an iconic venue of international recognition and creating new benchmarks through highly curated experiential events, making the venue a destination itself.
(This is an authored article and views expressed do not in any way represent the views of tvnews4u.com)