Any other year, more than 100,000 people migrate to Las Vegas for the annual Consumer Electronics Show. But in 2021, another year of a global pandemic, mask mandates and lockdowns, CES will move to a virtual setting from January 11 – 14.
The first conference of the year for many, industry folks typically flock to the Vegas strip to be inspired by new gadgets and ad formats, network, schmooze and ink deals. Without in-person wining and dining and on-going Zoom fatigue from nearly a year of virtual meetings, what will a fully virtual CES look like and will it matter for the industry?
Marketers say that they expect the typical wheeling and dealing to continue as usual, even if the usual shenanigans of the boondoggle aren’t possible to fully recreate virtually. That said, MediaLink will still facilitate networking — the firm has set up a virtual destination for tours and meetings this year, platforms like Pinterest will still run demos of new innovations and agency execs will still use the conference as a way to ink deals, albeit those that are already in the works.