Why Your Event Needs To Be Hybrid

March 15, 2022

So, What Are Hybrid Events?

COVID-19 has brought with it change, not only in the way we live, but also in the way we attend events. A new concept – ‘The Hybrid Event’ seems to be the latest in the events space.

Virtual interactions, such as webinars, conferences are being appreciated and the new normal is quickly being accepted and adopted. A pattern that we see is that due to the early and quick acceptance of vaccinations, the events industry is gradually transitioning into a new state-of-functioning. The hybrid way of conducting events.

As MeetingMax said “there is plenty of opportunity for hybrid events to enhance live events. Prior to Covid-19, it was primarily events on the forefront of technology that included gamification, chat bots, chat rooms and virtual streaming. We foresee these being standard across all events going forward, not an afterthought or a nice to have.”

There is an immense value-add to incorporating virtual to any in-person event. There is greater ability for outreach and impact and often for a lowered cost. Below, we’ve outlined 8 reasons why all events need to be Hybird

Expanded Outreach

There are always obstacles with attending an in-person event, mainly overall expense & travel time. While there is nothing quite like attending an event in person, it is far more reasonable and accessible to attend an event online, from the comfort of your home or office space. Corporate mindsets have also shifted over the last year to be much more open to Hybrid experiences.

Hybrid events give the option for attendees to choose whether it is worth it to attend in person or to participate through an online platform. This broadens the event organizer’s capacity for outreach. Invitations can be sent to people who wouldn’t historically be able to attend.

Major event companies experienced a 500% increase in how many people engage with their streamed webcast events when they transitioned to virtual delivery.

Limitless Diversity, Inclusion, and Accessibility

We believe everyone should have access to the enriching content, networking opportunities, and learning experiences that come with an event. But what happens when your organization can only afford to send its top executives? Or you are busy preparing an important presentation? Or you are a budding entrepreneur and don’t have the capital to get yourself to the event? Or the time, travel, and expense to attend can’t be justified?

By giving your audience the option to attend either in-person or virtually, you will open the doors for people worldwide and at all levels in their lives to participate in your event.

You can promote to International audiences, busy industry professionals and part-time workers who will likely have the ability to set aside a few hours of their day instead of having to designate entire days or a whole work week to the event.

People who historically wouldn’t be able to attend expensive and time-consuming events now have access to networking and learning opportunities to advance themselves personally and professionally.

Quality NOT Quantity

When event planners aren’t overwhelmed with the logistics of planning an event for thousands of attendees, their time and energy can be more directed towards curating the quality content and production level for presentations and keynote speakers. Scaling back the amount of in-person attendees will allow for organizers to focus on quality, not quantity.

Picture this: event planners will use their time coming up with engaging polling questions, curating videos, and planning interactive activities instead of stressing if they’ll have enough finger sandwiches, managing event staff & security, and scoping out venues.

Opening doors to Speakers & Top Notch Keynote Presentations

When physical attendee numbers are decreased, budgets can be re-allocated to curating top-notch speakers instead of paying for event space, food and beverages. You can also curate speakers from around the globe.

Just as it is easier for people to attend virtually, the same goes for industry thought-leaders that you are curating to speak at your event. It is more likely you can book a few hours of their time than requiring entire days or an entire week for them to attend your event. Finding and securing talent is a whole lot easier with virtual & hybrid events!

Continued Opportunities

Adding a virtual component to your event makes the transition of content from live to OnDemand seemless. If you are spending time and money curating impactful presentations and engaging content, you will definitely want to re-use that content.

When producing a hybrid event, you will already have the technology in place to easily record presentations, conversations, and activities. With Participate, you will be able to easily transition that content to an OnDemand Knowledge Base or Media Library.

Enhanced Data Capture

Never before have you been able to capture such rich data from your event attendees. With Participate, you can easily track and record things like:

  • When your attendees were the most engaged with the content
  • When attendees were disengaged
  • What questions were asked during presentations
  • How long attendees stayed for presentations
  • Which interactive features enabled the most participation

…and more!

Increased ROI

One of, if not the most, critical metric used to evaluate your event is, Return on Investment. With lowered costs for entry and the ability to expand outreach and increase attendance, virtual and hybrid event organizers will experience an increased ROI. There will still be costs of using a leading event software platform, however, organizers are still able to charge comparable ticket prices, increase the number of tickets sold and reduce or eliminate costs for venues, food & drink, and in-person event staff.

Enhanced Overall Event Experience

Even if you want to host an in-person event, there is no downside to not enabling a virtual component. For all of the above-stated reasons, using technology to enhance your live event experience can only add benefits to your organization and the ROI you get on the content you are working so hard to curate.

Enabling a hybrid component to all events can only help to expand your outreach and provide you with rich attendee data. “Your audience can participate and engage with your event, no matter where they are.”

The value-add of enabling virtual attendees has always been clear to those of us in the Virtual Event industry. With the rise of Virtual Events due to Covid-19, far more people are ready to transition indefinitely after having such positive, productive, and profitable experiences.

Event company PGI saw a 430% increase in clients transforming in-person trade shows, meetings, conventions, conferences, and town halls into hybrid or virtual events. Now that so many of us have experienced the benefit of going virtual, and have realized its added value, the event world will be hard-pressed to go back.

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