23 Feb Venues to Technology, 3 Considerations for Planning Hybrid Events
With the events industry transitioning back to live events, we find ourselves discussing hybrid events more and more as part of the framework of how the events industry is going to continue to thrive in a post COVID world. We have seen the scale of success of virtual events over the past couple of years and now event planning companies and event production companies are looking to elevate this further into the realms of hybrid to make events accessible for people not only in person but around the world and at the same time.
Planning a hybrid event requires detailed considerations to ensure the event’s success. The intricacies of ensuring that both your in-person attendees and virtual attendees have an engaging experience must be considered for a successful event.
Here are 3 key considerations for planning a hybrid event:
The technology must be right for the job
To elevate a hybrid event to memorable you need to make the delegate journey as smooth of possible for both those online and visiting in person. With the use of online event platforms suitable for hybrid events, this is all possible. here at Seven Events, we have spent the past couple of years researching the leading virtual event technology software to provide our clients with expert knowledge to ensure that they are set up for success. this has led us to develop our own virtual event platform “hubseven” which is perfect for operating hybrid events. This powerful tool allows virtual and in-person attendees to have a seamless experience together to really feel part of the same event such as live group and 1-21 chat, Q&A, live polling and video meetings.
Always focus on the content and collaboration
Content in the hybrid format needs to be developed in a way in which you consider both audiences at all times. Integrating videos and engaging content needs to be considered to keep attendee engagement high, especially if attending virtually. If delegates are not engaged and interested in what is being presented then engagement and interaction levels will undoubtedly be lower. ensuring that enough time is spent in the planning of content being presented in a virtual format is key. slideshows full of text are simply going to be lost in the hybrid medium. Also taking time to develop what the virtual attendee is actually going to be viewing at all times will result in a much smoother production. Utilising techniques such as picture in picture, full-size videos, and branded overlays all help keep the engagement high and the brand image strong.
Using a collaborative approach to creating content will also help elevate your hybrid event. Utilising features such as live polling, a live chat, and live q&a within your sessions across both the in-person and virtual element can really increase the level of interaction and engagement you receive from guests across both platforms and ensure that each attendee category feels present within the event. You do not want to alienate those viewing virtually to feel as if they are an afterthought.
Venue selection is essential
Many venues have adapted their offering to be more suitable to host hybrid events, adopting an approach of making existing meeting rooms into bespoke studio spaces for hybrid events. When selecting a venue for hybrid events you must have slightly different considerations than choosing a space for an in-person event. The venue which you are selecting needs to either have the required technology to create a basic broadcast for your event or can host the infrastructure required to build a space that can broadcast the event. Basic needs include a stable, fast internet connection. Considerations do increase to cinematic capabilities, sound, lighting effects and broadcast sequencing.
Stay Flexible and Collaborative
With the uncertainty of travel and delegates personal plans, it’s important that your event structure allows guests to change their plans easily without affecting the attendance at the event. When building registration websites or online event platforms, having the ability to quickly allow participants to change their attendance categories is important. Making it easy for registrants to upgrade to in-person attendance if circumstances allow — or to shift from attending in-person to joining virtually if new restrictions keep them home.