CONSIDERATIONS FOR PLANNING A HYBRID EVENT

Hybrid events combine in-person events with a virtual attendance option. Hybrid events are forecasted to be a trend for the next few years.

Due to the gathering and travel restrictions around the world during the pandemic, it is worth getting familiar with what exactly hybrid events are, and tactics to organize one.

Planning an event is already a monumental task. Now, organizers are being asked to consider planning a secondary event that streamlines directly into the original event model for exposure to virtual attendees. Sounds like it could be tricky, right?

Let’s be real, it is going to take some getting used to.

Here are a few things to help organizers when they start planning a hybrid event:

  • Preparation is key. Having a web streaming portal set up, and equipped with all information from event organizers, speakers & presenters, along with sponsor & partner information – it is a lot; be sure you give everyone a fair timeline to gather all resources and compile onto the platform as far in advance as possible.
  • Practice makes perfect. No event has ever gone “perfect”, has it? Either way, you can tell when organizers have practiced the script and roll out of the event versus those who go in with little to no preparation. Orchestrating two events at once is new, make time to rehearse.
  • Don’t leave anyone out. It will take getting used to, but all participants that are attending your event – live or virtually, need to be acknowledged and included. Online participants are just as valuable to your hybrid event as the individuals within the room, be sure they know that!
  • Stick to a schedule. All events have an itinerary or show flow, this component becomes even more important when there is a live stream involved. Participants logging in may not stick around if when they log in, the sessions are not running as advertised.
  • Consider time-zones. Going online, you may have a broader reach to international participants – do your best to consider the time zone of your target audience. Acknowledging the time of day participants around the world are logging in might be a fun engagement tactic!

Hybrid events provide us with an opportunity to fulfill the “show must go on” mentality through this pandemic. Thereafter the potential reach it has to audiences around the world paired with the financial benefit of attending remotely without travel costs, might just be enough for this trend to stick around longer than we think.

Have you considered planning a hybrid event?

What other considerations do you have for organizers?

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