It all started with getting compatible with virtual events. As soon as the industry got used to hosting events virtually, a new format already emerged- Hybrid Events. With the convenience they come, it is clear that hybrid events are surely staying forever. However, it is not easy to host one. It becomes challenging to host and manage the dual sets of audiences simultaneously.
Making it easier for you, here, we share a few tips to help you know hybrid events in detail. Enjoy reading.
What is a hybrid event?
Contrary to popular belief, the concept of hybrid events is simple and easy to understand. Hybrid events are a combination of virtual and in-person events. They come with great flexibility and allow the attendees to attend the event physically or virtually, totally depending on their convenience.
What are the benefits of hosting virtual events?
- Hybrid events allow the organizers to reach a wider audience; beyond the number of attendees at in-person or virtual events separately. Since these events let the attendees be a part of the event either through the physical mode or virtual mode, organizers have the opportunity to tap a larger audience, irrespective of their mode to join in.
- Hybrid events are beneficial not only for the attendees and organizers but also for the environment. Since one component of hybrid events is virtual events, they fall easy on the environment. Few factors that prove the statement are-
- They prevent harmful emissions in the atmosphere as they allow the attendees to join in virtually also.
- People attending the event virtually means less wastage of food and energy which means lesser effects on the ecosystem.
- This format of events allows the attendees to connect with their fellow audience, sponsors, and exhibitors in a more efficient and impactful way. One can connect with others either physically or virtually using the networking tools provided by the hybrid meeting platform.
- One significant advantage of hosting hybrid events is that the organizers can track the in-event attendees’ data. The top virtual event platforms allow the users to track the participants’ activities and later analyze the event’s success. With this feature, the organizers can keep an eye on the participation rates of the attendees, engagement levels, and more.
Here are some tips that will help you host an efficient and immersive hybrid event-
Find the suitable hybrid event solution-
While hosting in-person events, the first thing that you probably consider is the venue. The same goes for hybrid events. The venue of the event is the most crucial factor that can simply make or break the game for the organizers. Consider the online event platform as the venue for the event and lookout for the best solution. There are various factors that you should consider while looking out for the platform. To make it convenient for you, here we are listing a few must-have factors in an online event platform-
- First thing’s first, never compromise when it comes to the security levels of the platform. Your attendees are trusting you with their information, and now it is your responsibility to meet their expectations. Ensure the online event solution is safe from all online threats. You can go through the reviews posted by the clients that the platform has already worked for.
- Look for a hybrid event solution that provides enough networking opportunities to the audience attending the event virtually.
- The platform must provide customization features enabling you to design the event as per your needs and demands.
- Make sure the online event solution is easy to use and comes with a user-friendly interface.
- Not all virtual attendees will have access to desktops; also, people find it easier to attend a virtual event through mobile phones. Hence, when you’re looking out for a virtual event, make sure it is multi-device compatible that can be accessed with both laptops and mobile phones. Also, the solution should be Windows and iOS accessible.
Look for a suitable venue
- Now that you’ve found an appropriate hybrid event platform, it’s time to find a proper venue for the in-person component of the hybrid event. There are various factors that you should take into consideration while looking for a physical venue. First, the approx number of people it can accommodate; It is advisable to keep flexibility in the numbers. Apart from it, consider the podiums, sound, and bandwidth capabilities so that you can deliver an engaging in-person as well as pre-recorded event experience.
Keep both sets of the audience in mind
- Though it might get tempting to focus on one set of the audience more, ensure you keep both the audiences in consideration while planning and executing the event. So, understanding the requirements of both, live as well as in-person attendees becomes a necessity. Hire a platform that can effectively manage the audiences and make the event a seamless process for you. You need to bear in mind that the in-person audience has made more efforts to be a part of your event. At the same place, the virtual attendees are probably driving the attendance rate.
Have separate representatives for live and in-person attendees
- To execute the event seamlessly and balance both sets of attendees; experts advise to have event representatives for the live and in-person components. It will make it easier for you to manage and for the attendees to communicate their queries to the event representatives. It is crucial to have separate representatives as you won’t get overwhelmed by the situation and as an organizer, you will easily cater to the needs of live as well as in-person attendees.
Promote the event efficiently
- One factor that can maximize your audience engagement at the event is a well-planned marketing strategy. Leave no stone unturned when it comes to the promotion of your event. Use email and digital marketing and reach out to your sponsors, and spread the word about your event. To add to the audience’s excitement, create a separate page for your event and drop trailers and countdowns on it. You can also offer discounts to the early registrants ensuring maximum audience participation.
Encourage two-way communication
- Add value to the audience’s experience by encouraging two-way communication. Use engagement tools like live comments, live polls, quizzes, and Q&A sessions. It will allow the virtual audience to put across their views and doubts. Acknowledge their comments and queries and provide quick solutions. It will make the attendees feel like a part of the event and make their experience immersive and more valuable.
In conclusion, hybrid events came in when the world was fighting against uncertainty daily. Though the concept is new, and people are still trying to figure it out, incorporating the above-mentioned tips can surely help you roll out an engaging hybrid event experience.