Live meets Virtual.
Offering numerous possibilities and combining the best of virtual and in-person events, hybrid event formats are becoming more popular, securing a permanent space in the events industry. Hybrid events allow organisers to make use of all the benefits of virtual events and at the same time offer the physical interaction and unbeatable atmosphere of an in-person event.
What are hybrid events?
In-person events require all participants to be present in a physical venue at a specific time, at virtual events all attendees participate online; hybrid events are a combination of both, where participation takes place in a physical setting and online. Opening events to a larger audience by incorporating virtual elements is becoming more and more popular, with many companies taking advantage of hybrid formats. Incorporating virtual event features at in-person events offers many possibilities and advantages. Not being limited to a physical location offers the possibility to extend your reach to a global
audience, where attendees can participate from anywhere. Hybrid events have two types of audience: a virtual and an in-person audience. The event goal may be the same for the audience, the format is different. The offline event needs to be aligned with the virtual event world. It goes beyond live streaming the in-person event. Each audience requires tailored content, that allows the different audiences to interact in real-time with each other and the event content. Incorporating hybrid engagement tools is key to a successful event.
- Content makes or breaks the event. People are faced with an overload of information and content. The key is to consider how the content is implemented and how it is made accessible to both audiences.
- The experience the physical attendees will have will differ from the online experience, however, delivering content that is specifically targeted to the online audience will help create an equally elevating event experience.
- Choose speakers who have experience engaging with different audiences and are comfortable with cameras. If your speakers are inexperienced in interacting with hybrid audiences, give them the tools they need and offer speaker trainings.
- Hire a host for your hybrid event; someone who ensures the event runs smoothly and has experience engaging both online and offline audiences.
- Create a virtual community to encourage dialogue. Give tools to the physical and online audience to connect with each other, by incorporating live polls, interactive questions, chat rooms and contests for both the audiences.
- Event planning is fundamental. Hybrid events involve detailed planning and consideration of both the physical and virtual environment. Involving experts, who understand the lifecycle of events and have the knowledge of organising hybrid events is key to the success of your event.
Types of hybrid events
Common hybrid events include conferences, fairs, product demonstrations, sales kick-off meetings, workshops and webinars. Hybrid events are either internal or external. Internal hybrid events are organized for the benefit of the company’s internal stakeholders. External hybrid events are geared toward external stakeholders, such as customers and clients.
- Standard hybrid event. People can either attend at the in-person event or the virtual event platform. The physical event will be live-streamed to the virtual platform.
- One event with multiple locations. The event takes place at one main physical location. From that location content is live-streamed towards other physical locations and towards a virtual platform.
- In-person event with virtual audience. The speakers or presenters will be at the in-person event. The audience can attend the event via the online platform. The content will be live-streamed.
- Virtual on-demand. The in-person event is being recorded. Later in time the content is broadcasted towards the on-demand audience. The content can be used to create new brand content, therefore enabling conversations and connections.
What are the benefits of a hybrid event?
- Increase audience engagement
Incorporating a virtual events platform, gives you access to valuable engagement tools
and allows your online and physical audience to participate in live polls, surveys, Q&A sessions, live chat and video calls. The audience can effortlessly network and exchange (virtual) business cards.
- Increase your reach
You are not limited to the possibilities of your offline location. With a hybrid event, you have the benefits of the online world. People from all over the world can attend. You lower the barrier for your audience. You are not tied to the audience that can attend the offline event.
- Increase sponsorship opportunities
Sponsors have multiple benefits when investing in a hybrid event. They can advertise in
both the real- and online world. Sponsors have the possibility to interact and showcase their brand to a larger audience.
- Increase marketing opportunities
The event experience does not end with the event. The online content that was created for the event can be made accessible post-event, allowing your audience to re-share the content with their network and access the content on-demand at their own
convenience. Event content can also be repurposed and used to promote future events.
- Access powerful insights
Virtual event platforms track the online behaviour of the audience and give access to live data and insights. Measuring every touchpoint of your event helps improve future events and supports marketing efforts.
8 Useful tips when planning a hybrid event
- Think about involving the right amount of staff, to be available to assist the live attendees and the online attendees.
- Think TV-Production. The audio-visual production plays an important role in offering an excellent experience for both the online and in-person attendees.
- Allow physical and virtual speakers to interact and connect.
- Incorporate breakout sessions to foster networking opportunities between audiences.
- One of the most important things, when organising a hybrid event is to ensure that the online attendees are engaged and interacting with the event content.
- Use a moderator on stage, as the voice for your online audience.
- Pre-recorded or interviewed content helps elevate your event.
- Create exclusive content for the online audience. For example, use pre-recorded interviews, making your online audience feel more than just voyeurs.
How can we help you?
Evowk blends over 20 years of experience in live event production with cutting edge technology to offer both in-person and virtual attendees equally elevating brand experiences. Evowk offers full event management services and an all-in-one virtual events platform for
- Event design and production
- Attendee management, registration and event marketing
- High quality live streaming technology through Evowk’s integrated streaming service or any other third-party streaming service of your choice
- Video and audio feeds can be transmitted from any location to a global audience
- Venue / Studio sourcing to broadcast sessions
- Speaker trainings and on-site assistance
- Highly engaging networking features to connect live and virtual attendees
- Integrated live tracking and reporting of audience behaviour
Are you ready for the new feature of events?
Hosting a hybrid event takes time and effort. They offer great opportunities to extend your reach and target a new audience. There must, however, be clear communication and commitment to both audiences. It is one event with two experiences. The implementation of the event and the content is essential. Think of a host, speakers, a
virtual events platform, engagement tools and the planning of the event. Our team of event experts are here to help you elevate your events and take them to the next level with hybrid event formats.
Interested in elevating your events? Get in touch with us today!