There’s no denying the last two years have changed the business and events landscape immeasurably.
Virtual communication and digital conferencing have become the norm, shifting behaviours and attitudes towards networking, events, and conference expectations. Audiences are now looking for greater flexibility and opportunities when it comes to events, leading to the rise of the hybrid event – a mix of in-person and virtual attendance options.
There are so many financial, commercial, and logical reasons to go hybrid when it comes to your next event. Here our team discuss their top 7:
1. Increase your reach and attendance
Put simply, by removing the need to travel and attend an event in person you’re able to overcome venue capacity limitations, geographical and travel barriers and importantly, open your event to a drastically broader global audience – increasing your brand reach and attendance opportunities.
This is especially significant under the current climate, where border, vaccination and travel restrictions can be enforced at any time and inevitably create event attendance hesitancy. In fact, a study by Matthew Ley, Co-Founder of The Streaming Network found that nearly 98% of attendees polled at a recent hybrid event were not planning to attend it live for differing reasons. That’s a lot of attendees (and revenue) that could have been missed.
2. Engage with your audience
Hybrid events increase the occasions for connection and interaction, creating a more rewarding experience for both in-person and virtual attendees.
Virtual attendees can comment, like, ask questions, engage in polls, share, and generally interact with one another more easily, broadening engagement opportunities not only during the event – but importantly in the days and weeks that follow it. These opportunities can also be made available to in-person attendees through social media or a dedicated event app.
3. Secure new speakers
Ever wanted to engage a speaker on the other side of the world, but didn’t have the budget to accommodate their travel?
Well, now’s your chance! Hybrid events remove geographical barriers, allowing you to tap into a larger scope of speakers – the world is literally your oyster! Your speakers can join virtually, providing your attendees access to exciting and in-demand speakers.
On the flip side, hybrid events offer speakers wider audience exposure and the ability to participate from the comfort of their own home/office/workspace making it an easier and far more attractive proposition.
4. Create new sponsorship opportunities
By combining both in-person and virtual attendance options, you’re able to offer corporate sponsors access to a larger audience, unlocking an array of creative sponsorship opportunities.
Think banner ads, app advertising, ticketed content, sponsored segments, digital swag bags etc. This is on top of your in-person event sponsorship opportunities. They can communicate 1:1 with attendees, tell their story and receive detailed insights and reportable data.
5. Create a content pipeline
In 2022, content is still king and a requirement for any business.
By recording certain sections of your event, you’ll create a comprehensive content library that you can use and repurpose time and time again based on your target audience and business goals. You’ll effectively extend the life of your event investment beyond just the day, creating short videos, reels, or paid content months (even years) after the event.
6. Collect copious amounts of data
As we mentioned, hybrid events provide a veritable wealth of data and insights that organisers and sponsors can tap into. You’ll know who attended, when they attended, what they were interested in, what they weren’t, how long they were engaged for, and so much more.
You can run polls, create focus group breakout spaces, generate interactive Q+A’s and importantly gain data-driven insights that you can share with sponsors to justify their investment and help you to improve your next event.
7. Create a new revenue stream
Your event is over; however, the opportunities don’t stop there. Why not look at creating an on-demand portal, taking advantage of your created content to reach attendees and new audiences?
This portal platform could provide you with a new digital advertising revenue stream through display advertising, banner ads, sponsored content, pop-ups, and the like.
So, what are you waiting for?
Organising a hybrid event is not for the faint-hearted. They require intricate planning and execution to ensure success. That’s where we come in. We can help you connect with your audience like never before.
Why not book a free 30-minute consultation here with a hybrid event expert to discuss your event and how going hybrid will benefit you?
Or sign up to our newsletter here and be the first to hear about our upcoming Hybrid Event Masterclass Series!