Advantages of Hybrid Events in a Post-Pandemic Era

9 July 2021

 

What are the biggest advantages of keeping virtual aspects during your in-person conference?

The global pandemic that infected the world, not only impacted the way we view health, wellbeing, and productivity, but also found its way to affect the world of events and networking. Many companies had to adapt and shape their business plans in accordance with government regulations and societal standards for a new world forced to quarantine. With social distancing measures, masks, and fear of getting yourself or others sick, many postponed their long-awaited events that took many months to plan and coordinate.

Now we flash forward to June 2021; vaccines are rolling out, and people are starting to return to a “new normal.” Concerts, festivals, and business conferences are slowly but surely coming back. As events start to kick back up post-pandemic, do we really know the benefits of what a hybrid event can do for the up-and-coming conferences?

The online community is open and welcoming to those who truly use it as a tool for networking. Now more than ever, having event management software that can handle a variety of events is essential for helping organizations move forward. The advantages of being able to streamline conferences and events using effective virtual tools are essential to expanding your network and net worth.

There is power in having a unified event management tool that gives you what you need to manage your event from both a physical standpoint as well as when offering a virtual participation option. The ability to reach hundreds, if not thousands, of people at the click of a button is changing the game for conferences all across the world.

Increased Attendee Count and Enhanced Networking

“Adding a virtual component to your conference can attract those attendees that would otherwise not attend at all due to travel expenses, other commitments, not being able to take off work, etc. Each conference that supports virtual has the potential to attract a huge extra crowd of virtual attendees from all over the state or country.” –Asher Lazo, Conference Tracker Support

Keeping or adding virtual features to events creates the opportunity to attract more attendees, meaning hybrid events are more profitable and key to growing your organization, which is likely needed now more than ever.

Enhancing the networking capabilities within the event by providing an inviting online platform, helps bring attendees together for a unified experience, whether they can attend in person or not. Creating an online experience opens a door for them to reach out to the community at the event, as well as make connections with exhibitors and sponsors. This means creating a hybrid or online experience would potentially increase profit for the organization by increasing the value for those wanting to participate. This then allows those who attend in-person to mingle with online participants as well as those there at the site. The right event management tool offers many ways to connect, such as messaging others, posting to social boards, sharing files, and creating appointments to meet up (which can be virtual appointments).

Additionally, having a hybrid event takes the event beyond the time restraints of an in-person event and session schedule, enabling many more connections than you could do during the physical event. You can allow access to sessions post-event and increase revenue by charging an access fee. You can continue to monitor who is involved and accessing which of these sessions to know which direction to take your next event.

More Value for Exhibitors and Sponsors
Maintaining both an online and in-person experience increases the value for exhibitors or sponsors showcasing at your conference. Why not offer the exhibitors different pricing tiers for in-person, online, or combined exhibiting opportunities? Exhibitors and sponsors can be offered the ability to reach those who are attending face-to-face as well as those attending online. Through tools, gaming features, and advertisements within the attendee app as well as advertising their presence throughout the in-person portion of the event, exhibitors and sponsors gain even more visibility.

Attendees who are grabbing a bite to eat between sessions might have some time... right at their fingertips are the tools to create genuine and far-reaching relationships through online connections. Those who weren't able to make it can still chat and meet with others online, including the exhibitors, which in the end turns into more exposure for everyone.

Guest Speakers and Presenters Can Be Remote
Event management platforms have the ability to facilitate and enhance the overall attendee experience. The use of technology allows international attendees to join these events virtually. This can also be used for seeking and recruiting well-known presenters; the possibility of being able to attract presenters that can only present virtually is greater and often less expensive than paying for that all-star guest to travel to the event.

Maintain a Lower Carbon Footprint
If you’re looking for an additional bonus of doing a fully hybrid event, splitting the event where you have the potential for more online attendees rather than in-person event-goers decreases the carbon footprint. There will be less travel by attendees, fewer meals thrown away, and less transportation of materials such as rental chairs and tables. You can create less waste overall for the environment. So if you want to help the planet we call home and wish to take advantage of all of the added value a hybrid event can bring, book a demo with us. We'll help you with all your event needs!

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