Statistical data collected by Event Manager Blog states that more than 70% of event organizers would incorporate hybrid events in 2021 and beyond.
Hybrid events are a combination of virtual and in-person events allowing global audience engagement, and keeping intact the inclusiveness of online as well as the human connection of IRL. Hybrid events bring out the best of both worlds.
Post the pandemic situation, organizers are shifting their focus from short-term survival to success in the long run. The fact that hybrid events offer a high degree of flexibility, they play a major role in the long-term strategy.
How do Hybrid Events work?
Hybrid events are the easiest and most useful solution to situations where many key audiences are not able to meet in person, or the event is open for audiences from different locations, or the event space is not big enough to accommodate all.
The main goal of hybrid events is to provide a consistent attendee experience no matter how people join the event – virtual or in-person. A successful hybrid event is one where attendees can engage presenters and audiences directly.
Hybrid events – now and in the future
Hybrid events are a good idea as they provide all attendees access to the same event content and similar opportunities to interact with speakers and each other. These events work under any situation for a global audience, and that adds to the limitless opportunities of these events.
Benefits of hybrid events
1. Greater audience engagement
Hybrid event technology allows participants from both worlds to take part in the event by interacting with the presenters and networking with other attendees. Virtual attendees engage with presenters and other attendees – both virtual and in-person – via the internet by sharing content, asking live questions, or participating in video conferences.
In-person and virtual attendees engage with one another using technology that connects all attendees, no matter whether they are attending the event online or in-person.
2. Increased reach and attendance
The hybrid event approach lets more participants attend the events. If someone is unable to join an event in person because of a different location, he might certainly join it virtually. Since there is no upper limit of the number of virtual attendees unlike that of an in-person event, a hybrid approach balances well.
3. Improved ROI
The greater reach and scalability of hybrid events attract more sponsors and audiences leading to a great turnover. The financial risk is low as it is easier to scale down in-person activities and scale up digital presence to let more attendees access the event remotely. A hybrid event adds an online layer to the onsite events letting the attendance grow dramatically at a significantly lower marginal cost.
4. Data-driven analytics
Virtual events have introduced granular data and sophisticated insights in place of general KPIs effective to determine the effectiveness of onsite events. It is easier to retrieve more specific data about audience engagement – how people are interacting, what topics drive the maximum engagement and participation, etc. The same benefit is achieved in a hybrid event as well, with an added online component to in-person attendance.
5. Community building
A hybrid event can easily lead to bringing people together motivating engagement, even after the event. The engagement easily transitions into an online community where a brand can nurture the same audience over time, with the participants keep on interacting with each other as well as with the brand.
6. Great source of content
Hybrid events are effective in fueling the content engine of the brand which helps in future marketing efforts. During a hybrid event, everything in the presentation including keynotes, panels, and collateral can be recorded digitally to watch and repurpose after the event. Brands can also drive new leads by making these sessions available on-demand via emails.
Hybrid (or virtual) events have a significantly reduced impact on the environment. Sustainability is a critical consideration for event managers, and the reduced carbon footprints of events have been a boon to the world. While sacrificing onsite events will not be fully possible, hybrid events can encourage less travel, use smaller space, generate less waste, and use fewer resources.
Hybrid events are going to stay
Event managers are eager and excited to see in-person events return. However, post covid era, events scenario will not be the same again. The impact to bring people together, help them form effective connections, and resulting in a greater ROI will be transferred mostly to hybrid events from in-person events.
Hybrid events unlock the potential for several things that are often a limitation in onsite events. They reach out to a larger audience with fewer resources and lower rates. They also ensure to offer experiences of two events – virtual and in-person – via a single arrangement.
Incorporating hybrid events in the plan of action for your brands seems to be a wise decision to take in the years ahead. If you are looking for a suitable platform to organize your events in a hybrid mode, get in touch with us. We will be happy to present you with a demo of how our event platform works for your brand.