Airmeet allows community managers to host large-scale events: Prashant Pansare

Airmeet is a one of its kind, a home-grown online platform for community managers, to host interactive virtual events, which feel as real and authentic as in-person events. Airmeet allows users to conduct meetings, events, conferences, company town halls, stand-up meetings, job fairs, classes, convocations and more, from the comfort of their homes.

The dynamic platform allows community managers to host interactive sessions with a large group of people by creating collaborative tables. The platform mimics the real dynamics of a full-fledged on-ground event without the heavy capital investment. Attendees can browse through multiple tables, switch from one table to another and also interact with the speaker both publicly and privately.

The company is dedicated to helping its clients adapt to the ‘new normal’ through their platform which is a true remote work enabler. Excerpts from an interview with Prashant Pansare, Head of Business, Airmeet.

DQ: What makes Airmeet different from other platforms in the market?

Prashant Pansare: While creating a product every entrepreneur focuses on specific problems that they are passionate about solving. Virtual platforms have become the “it” thing in today’s day and age owing to the global catastrophe that has hit us. However, when we designed Airmeet our objective was to not just make virtual meet and greet easier for people.

We build our product with a specific target audience in mind – a group of people we like to call ‘actualizers’. These are knowledge professionals, who are successful in their respective fields and are hungry for intellectual conversations with their peers and industry experts. As former corporate employees, my colleagues and I have faced various challenges when it comes to attending skill upgradation and networking events. These concerns were sometimes as minor as not being able to get out of a commitment and find time to travel to the venue and bigger issues like geographical limitations.

Learning from our experience and putting our knowledge to use, we built Airmeet – a platform where community managers can host large-scale events. We can support up to 100,000 attendees, such as interactive webinars, company town halls, job fairs, networking events, workshops, conferences, and much more. Not only is our objective of building the platform different from others in the market, our virtual interface also personifies our vision and is a real-life replication of on-ground events.

I can confidently say that no other platform in India offers engaging experience for attendees and speakers alike, features, and customer service and experience of hosting virtual events like ours, at the present.

DQ: How is Airmeet easing the transition from offline events to online events?

Prashant Pansare: Actively attending all events on a virtual platform is a new concept for the Indian corporate workforce. Many people fear that virtual events are not as effective since they are largely broadcast in nature. With Airmeet, we simplify this process by allowing users to get comfortable with this transition by providing a digital experience that simulates real world environment for networking and engaging. Enclosed below are a few points that work in our favour:

* The interface is intuitive and simple, thus, making it easy for any community manager to host an event and for hundreds of concurrent attendees to join, making it extremely scalable.

* The host can create an Airmeet using a few steps and share the link with prospective participants. Every participant must enter legitimate details including name, company, and designation while entering the event. The organiser can manage these registrations remotely and monetize the event should they like.

* Once participants enter the arena, they find themselves in a familiar setting with multiple tables in the social lounge, chat, and stage as visible features. They can view profiles of people on each table, take a seat at a table of their choice, and can interact with people on that table in a private virtual conference. Participants can also move around and join other tables should they wish to continue networking. During the live stage, attendees can raise their hand to ask for the mic and interact with speakers.

* Since Airmeet allows events to be interactive, people can actively get involved in conversation with their peers and speakers, ensuring the effectiveness of the event. Broadcast events often cannot hold the attention of the audience for a long duration as participants can feel unheard. On Airmeet, they can feel connected to the conversation and stay attentive through the course of the event.

DQ: How is Airmeet a remote work enabler in its truest terms?

Prashant Pansare: Considering the recent coronavirus pandemic, companies globally have accepted the concept of remote work. Instances have shown that a substantial chunk of their workforce believe that they are more productive when they work from home. Companies are therefore now keen to adopt the work from home philosophy for a longer term and they are looking for tools that are designed keeping their needs in perspective.

With communication at the core of its DNA, Airmeet allows employers and employees to stay connected and interact effectively. Considering the platform has features that allow private and public communication, it is ideal for interactions. Teams can operate and interact with each other on designated tables and employers and managers can easily move between them to communicate with different groups. Not only this, boosting employee morale becomes extremely easy through interactive events that can be organised on the platform.

Everything, from upskilling webinars and workshops, keynote announcements, conferences, company town halls, virtual hirings, achievement awards and more can be organised for a large group without compromising on the quality and restriction on the number of people. Moreover, our customer service team is readily available to sort any issues quickly without the management having to push. Airmeet is a 100 % remote company that uses its own product for various collaborations and all internal discussions as well.

DQ: Please tell us about the brands inception, USP and vision.

Prashant Pansare: With the remote work culture gaining momentum in India, we saw an opportunity for innovation and decided to bridge this gap by designing Airmeet. The brand’s vision is to dematerialize & democratize events by enabling the flow of ideas and creating meaningful social interactions.

Our mission is to drive the world’s transition into virtual events and make the experience as personal and real as possible. Our USP is that we have tried to simplify communication by replicating the nuances of an offline event to an online platform. We have ensured that navigating through the Airmeet platform is as easy as walking through an event venue.

DQ: What is the relevance of virtual event hosting platforms and their growth trajectory?

Prashant Pansare: The virtual events industry is growing rapidly and is garnering attention of both large and small enterprises. The current situation has pushed businesses and professionals to adapt to a remote working culture which includes an inclination towards hosting large scale events virtually. The demand for online events is anticipated to rise steadily making such platforms a necessity for most businesses to come out in the forefront.

Virtual interactions with a large audience have been limited to a broadcast format for a long time, where a speaker / panel of speakers address attendees in a one-way communication. Although some platforms do offer a chat box to ask questions, the conversations aren’t dynamic in nature. Also, while virtually interactive platforms have allowed people to host meetings and conferences, the user interface, personalized features, and security have been a hurdle in many ways.

This is where Airmeet creates a niche for itself by offering a more active platform that allows a multi-way communication between participants and speakers. Mapping the growth trajectory for an entire industry would be a challenge.

However, if I talk about us, we have noticed a 2,000% quarterly growth in business and more than 10,000 events have been hosted on Airmeet so far, as a significantly larger audience base is now dependent on video-based interactions with their colleagues and industry peers.

DQ: What is the future of virtual events in India, and how are industries responding to this shift?

Prashant Pansare: Although in India, there is an inclination towards on-ground events, the new world order has encouraged digitization on the front. The broadcast format of hosting events will soon become passé, when people start recognizing more dynamic platforms where they can interact with speakers and hosts along with other participants.

Given the exponential drop in data costs and better technology adoption, the new era will enable much higher capability for virtual and yet highly engaging experiences.

Also, unlike real world events, the digital events are much more cost effective, travel agnostic as well as enable democratising participation at events. With knowledge professionals getting comfortable with virtual events, we also foresee a generation of attendees that enjoy personalized features, cost-effective events, easy registration, access to a wide-ranging repository of expert speakers and much more.

This would mean that there is a possibility that knowledge imparting events permanently turn towards a virtual platform and the offline event industry focuses on more relationship building events in the near future.

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