When the first lockdown was announced on Monday 23rd March 2020, the hospitality and events industries went into hibernation overnight, along with many other services which could no longer operate under the new rules. Not only were in-person events a distant memory, but many of our clients had to pause construction for a few months due to restrictions on building sites, meaning we at Building Relations had to get creative.

During the various lockdowns and restrictions which followed, we worked hard and fast to adapt our campaigns and PR strategies, to make them relevant, interesting, and helpful during a difficult period. This also applied to events, particularly to those for the press.

We soon found that there were both pros and cons to this new world of virtual events and communication. Concepts had to be more interactive, exciting, and engaging since traditional face-to-face networking was no longer possible. We were able to attract surprisingly large numbers, even those overseas, that otherwise would not have been able to attend due to distance or timings. We also recorded events for those that couldn’t make the live sessions.

Going forwards, together with our clients we have recognised that virtual events add a different kind of reach and value, and that – whilst we are embracing the opportunity for face-to-face networking once more – there is a place for both or even a hybrid combination going forwards to achieve the best of both worlds.

Now entering October 2021, the demand we have experienced over the last few months for events has been extraordinary, and currently shows no sign of slowing down. Although Covid is still affecting the way things are planned, with supply chain issues and safety measures requiring longer lead times, plus a number of people still feeling apprehensive, events feel almost completely back to normal, with recent examples including ‘Topping Outs’ of new buildings, press events and local community events.

Last week on Wednesday 22nd September, we hosted the official launch event of one of our newest clients, independent land agency Walter Cooper, at Somerset House. With over 200 attendees, this was our first event on such a large scale featuring both indoor and outdoor settings since Covid first arrived, and it felt like a rather emotional milestone on the journey to the ‘new normal’. It was wonderful to see guests getting back into the swing of things and celebrating with acquaintances new and old.

We at Building Relations have learnt from the last 18 months how to adapt, what works and what doesn’t, and how to make sure everyone attending our events remains safe but also has a brilliant time. With that in mind, ‘Building Events’ is mostly definitely open for business and ready to help, so get in touch with emily@building-relations.co.uk if you are looking for support to host your next event.