You might have heard by now that hybrid is the future of the event industry and is here to stay. Today, it has become a hot topic after virtual events. A lot of discussions are going around the corner about hybrid amalgamation.
In the past few months, virtual has become the new normal due to the unforeseen forecast of the COVID-19 global pandemic. As restrictions started uplifting and we moved ahead with time, hybrid events came into play. The flexibility offered by the hybrid event format made it the first choice of event planners today.
A sudden increase in the percentage of hybrid virtual events has been noted in 2020. With the increase in the percentage, a sudden surge in the demand for virtual hybrid event platforms has been witnessed. Today, various virtual hybrid event platforms are available in the market that offers comprehensive services and customisable solutions. The competition between the service providers has been on, who wins the battle is yet to be watched.
A lot of speculation has been going around hybrid events. Event planners and marketers are searching for answers to many questions revolving around hybrid events. It has been well anticipated that even post-pandemic, people will remain skeptical to be part of large gatherings. However, it will result in upscaling the demand for hybrid events in the future.
In this post, we have addressed the most popular questions revolving around hybrid events that you need to know. Let’s get started to explore hybrid events.
- What are hybrid events?
If we simply say, hybrid events are a mix of live physical and virtual events. Hybrid events are organised at an on-site physical venue paired with a virtual component. It enables attendees to access the event either by visiting a venue or attend it remotely via any device. Hybrid events are organised with a small gathering of on-site people whereas a large number of attendees can be part of the event from respective geographic locations. Hybrid events bring in-person as well as virtual attendees in the same frame. It brings out the best of both the event worlds, i.e. virtual and physical events. Hybrid events consist of the most promising features of the virtual events and warmth and face-to-face interactions of physical events. In the challenging times of pandemic, it has delivered real-life experiences to attendees by mixing in-person events with technological capabilities and has outreached attendees worldwide.
- Do we need to plan two different events while organising hybrid events?
With hybrid events, you need to put in a little extra effort in planning a strategy for it. Hybrid events combine the elements of both event formats in-person as well as virtual events. You need time to create a strategy for both audiences. The best part is, if you have organised a physical and virtual event earlier, you can easily organise hybrid events. You don’t need to plan for two different events, but take the aspects of both the event formats into consideration. In-person events aspects such as a physical venue, speakers, catering, etc. remain relevant to hybrid events. Additionally, you need to pair with a comprehensive virtual hybrid event platform service provider that offers engaging and interactive features. All we say is, a hybrid event is one single event that consists of the elements of both event formats. With the right technology and proper on-site venue set up, you are sure to host a successful hybrid event.
- How in-person & virtual attendees interact with each other during hybrid events?
Many planners are searching for the answer to this question. Audience engagement is one of the biggest concerns of event planners while organising hybrid events. With hybrid events, you need to consider the engagement of both on-site attendees as well as virtual attendees. The major concern lies here, how in-person and virtual attendees will interact within a hybrid event format?
There are various options available during the hybrid event that enables both the attendees to have free-flowing conversations. You can simply host Q&A sessions, open discussions, Live polls, that allow in-person and virtual attendees to interact seamlessly.
A hybrid event has a moderator that facilitates easy conversations and engagements between both the set of attendees. While hosting a hybrid event, assign a person to be on a call who ensures all the attendees are on the same page.
- What are the perks or benefits of hybrid events?
Hybrid events offer many more advantages that are far beyond the reach of traditional event formats. After many months of social distancing protocols, hybrid events enable attendees to have face-to-face interactions in small clusters. Certain levels of in-person interaction and feeling of togetherness are one of the biggest advantages of hybrid events. Apart from it, increased reach, better attendance, amplified engagements, reduction in expenses and carbon footprints, substantial ROI, evergreen content, etc. are some of the benefits of hybrid events.
- How to host a successful hybrid event?
To host a successful hybrid event you need to keep three things in mind. Firstly, create engaging content, second plan an effective strategy, and lastly, leverage the right technology. You need to customise the content accordingly keeping both the set of attendees in mind. Make both virtual and in-person attendees feel valued at the same level. Attending a virtual event is not as stimulating as in-person events. While attending an event at on-site location attendees are surrounded by other attendees. Whereas with virtual events attendees access the event virtually via a desktop or mobile screen. Looking into the screen for long hours becomes monotonous if the sessions are long stretched. Keep your sessions, presentations, and speakers talks short to keep attendees engaged throughout. You can incorporate engaging features amid sessions to keep the interest of attendees alive, thus preventing them from falling amid sessions. To ensure a successful hybrid event, you need to focus on production value as well. It can elevate your event by delivering outstanding experiences and can even break it by making your event fall flat on the face. Once you embrace hybrid events, internet connection and speed, audio and video quality, and lighting effects play an important role.