What is a Hybrid Event? How do they work?
Hybrid Events have been around for a while, and are most definitely here to stay, but there’s a lot to know! Here’s our lowdown on what a Hybrid Event entails and some answers to frequently asked questions.
Hybrid Events: a definitiion
A Hybrid Event is an event that can include everyone, no matter where in the world they may be. This could be at home, in the office, in an exhibition hall or in a live face to face main plenary session. The different audiences are all connected to the same event and same content simultaneously. Hybrid Events are an incredibly powerful way of including every single person, without restriction. All you need is an internet connection. Hybrid Events are inclusive which is why they are so popular. Hybrid Events are an event format now and for the future.
How do Hybrid Events engage attendees?
Hybrid Events provide many options to increase audience participation. Hybrid Events not only increase audience sizes, by including multiple locations, but allow for multiple functions to improve discussions and interaction. “But HOW?” we hear you ask… Here are a few examples.
A session can be delivered live, in a room, to attendees in that room. Speakers can be physically in the room with this audience, contribute remotely via video link from another location, or (more commonly) a combination of the two.
The same goes for the audience. They can be in the room, at home virtually, in an office, and from multiple locations around the globe. The beauty and simplicity of Hybrid Events? They all engage and discuss the same content, at the same time.
This can happen via live polling, word clouds and Q&A sessions which can be moderated and facilitated as any live event would be. The difference? The audience is not limited to just those who can be there in person.
Hybrid Events are born from an ethos of positive collaboration. Breakout rooms can be set up in the same fashion as a core track in a Plenary Session. Discussions, best practise sharing and education knows no limits with a Hybrid Event. The event simply needs to be managed professionally, well planned for and for production and crew to be in place to ensure each element goes without a hitch. The audience can be located anywhere in the world and engage with specific live content all at the same time (and this can be translated simultaneously too.)
Exhibitions are an exciting opportunity for organisations who use the Hybrid Event model. Most business professionals would agree that personal interaction at an exhibition stand can be one of the most valuable interactions that happens at an event. According to Statista (2021), 81% of survey respondents value face to face interaction with potential vendors as very, or extremely, important. Hybrid Events can include exhibitions and so, reach wider more diverse audiences.
With a Hybrid Event, the stand and exhibitors can be physically in the room, with this supported by a virtual stand managed live by additional team members who can be located anywhere in the world.
Picture this, an exhibition in Paris, with two staff on the stand to talk to delegates.
A stand with digital capabilities that allows these staff to demo products/services to the people in the room.
Now imagine a Chinese or German attendee, who can’t make it to the exhibition in person and who don’t speak French. No problem. A Hybrid Event solution can allow attendees and staff to log into the Hybrid Event digitally, from New York or Shanghai and interact as they would in person. The Event’s potential reach increases greatly, and the possibilities really are endless.
Meeting Spotlight’s recent survey concluded that “73% of Event Planners Expect Hybrid Events to Be More Common in the Future.”
We’re 100% inclined to agree. While Virtual Events are considered by many as a temporary solution during the Covid era, the benefits that the Hybrid Event model now offers are numerous. Organisations are using Hybrid Events to improve collaboration and inclusivity, engage wider audiences, increase their capabilities to share content and drive better conversations and all in a sustainable way. If you’re not onboard with Hybrid Events now, you will be involved in them in some way in the future.
For more information on “Hybrid Events” please contact the team at Cloudpresenter and we’d love to chat further!