Working alongside a hybrid event planner, such as ourselves, you also need to consider the following:
Content is arguably even more important at a hybrid event. Not only do your in-person attendees have to be engaged, but your virtual attendees should also be involved throughout the event so the content should reflect this.
Ensure all your speakers are prepared and assist them with any tips that will make their presentations engaging to both sets of attendees.
Because a hybrid event can attract more attendees than for a ‘live’ event make the most of it! Create a website that has engaging content to attract more attendees with all the information a prospective delegate may need to know to register.
The hybrid event’s registration process should be just as seamless as an onsite event registration. We suggest you create a branded registration webpage with the company’s logo and the event information, so prospective delegates can decide easily if they wish to attend and if appropriate which sessions or breakouts they are interested in.
We would advise you to create a different registration process for your in-person delegates versus your virtual delegates. This means they can sign up for any sessions they are interested in.
Obviously it is more difficult to schedule appointments when some delegates are attending virtually and the others in person.
An ideal solution to this is to use an appointment scheduling tool to block off timeslots that are reserved for networking. This way, virtual and in-person delegate can see one another’s calendars efficiently.
What are the advantages of running a hybrid event?
Whilst a ‘live’ event is often preferred by attendees as they are the most engaging, some people do not have the time or the ability to travel long distances to attend those events as mentioned above (or link to hybrid page) This factor along with cost of the actual event can put off delegates from registering.
Changing your event to hybrid can attract more registrants than an in-person event as they can attend the event from their own offices or homes and at a lower cost.
Enhanced Content Engagement
A hybrid event allows the organiser to record the sessions and make them available to delegates after the event. This means delegates who were unable to attend some or all of the event or simply want to rewatch certain sessions after the event is over can do so at leisure.
Most companies will make available their recorded events for an agreed period of time so that the delegates can access the content.
Lower Carbon Footprint
The events carbon footprint will decrease by reducing the number of onsite attendees due to less travel, wasted catering, staffing etc.
Increased Sponsorship Value
Your sponsors will have double the opportunity to engage with both in person and virtual attendees creating new opportunities for brand awareness and lead generation. Attracting more sponsorship in this way can help with the costs of running a hybrid event
Here are some common dilemmas and how to avoid some pitfalls:
One Event, but Two Experiences
You must take into account the two experiences between the in-person and virtual attendees. Each attendee will have their own challenges.
Ensure the video streaming is working correctly and that presenters are confident to speak in front of a camera and also get the same message across to those live attendees.
It is imperative that both sets of attendees have the same experience and don’t have the thought that they are missing out on parts of the event as they are not there in person or attending virtually
Keep Content Engaging
It is much more difficult to keep your virtual delegates engaged in front of a computer screen so perhaps incorporate some live polls or Q & A to keep them motivated.
Don’t schedule the sessions too long to keep all delegates engaged.
A benefit of holding a hybrid event is that it gives the opportunity for worldwide delegates to attend virtually. Bear in mind where the majority of your attendees will be logging on from and try and set your event hours to cover this so they can attend live.
Make the event available on demand so those delegates who cannot make all the sessions can catch up at a time convenient for them.