Hybrid events are those events where you need to be present, but you also need to use the power of technology and other resources to make it successful. Even if you’ve done it once before, keeping everything running smoothly isn’t always easy. Hybrid events are all the rage right now, but how do you go about hosting them?
Hosting events such as conferences and summits can be highly rewarding, but it’s essential to keep everything running unblemished so you can ensure success and return on investment for yourself and your clients or customers. These five challenges on hosting hybrid events and how to handle them will help you create and execute an effective hybrid event so you can attract and keep engaged attendees and provide valuable content that creates a buzz throughout the web that will benefit your company now and in the future.
1. Choosing the right Event Management Platform:
Since hybrid events have features of both online and in-person activities, choosing the right event management platform to handle this type of event can be tricky – particularly since there are many things to consider when making this decision. It can be tempting to choose an event management platform that’s designed specifically for virtual events, but there are special considerations with hybrid events that are handled differently when compared to purely virtual or physical ones. However, if you keep these key points in mind before selecting an event management platform, you’ll have a much better chance of picking one that will meet your needs, no matter what type of hybrid event you have in mind.
Depending on the type of hybrid event, be wise enough to choose the right platform that caters to manage before the event, during the event, and after the event needs on one platform.
2.Ticket Pricing Strategy:
We need a justification here.
According to the marketing tech news, virtual events have been set to grow in popularity post-pandemic as it led to the shut down of physical events throughout the world. Thus the industry slowly turned virtual, with many marketers offering their virtual events at zero cost. But this is considered impractical with in-person events, and they don’t follow the same strategy.
As already discussed, hybrid events are partly live and partly virtual. In the meantime, around 70% of the organizers have planned to invest in hybrid events from 2021. But only 24% of these organizers have experience in conducting their events hybrid. Knowledgeable technology is to be implemented here. Now how do we price these events?
It’s high time we organize the pricing. It can sound complicated as we are hosting one event but are going to have two different experiences.
Factors affecting your pricing strategy:
- Charge only the in-person attendees for on-site costs like food, beverage, or venue costs.
- If you arrive at an idea to send kits to your virtual attendees, consider the shipping charges, which could affect how you charge the attendees.
- In case of adequate sponsors, do not charge your attendees much. You can cover up with their ads on your virtual platform.
- Never forget to offer discounts or complimentary access for existing customers and certain new attendee audiences.
- Engage a well-known speaker. Determine your charges if you are offering significant enough content to both audiences.
Maintain well-defined pricing tires. Too many prices and offerings would complicate the event. Thus, be prepared to manage the hybrid event.
3.Meeting the needs of both the audiences:
As already mentioned, hybrid events are one event with two diverse experiences. They bring together guests and colleagues from various businesses and organizations. The content delivered can be the same, but the positions of both audiences are different. Thus, there is a need to build a meaningful relationship between the two audiences, leading to new business opportunities. You can sometimes pose unique problems when it comes to accommodating both the participants. In all possible ways, make sure to cater to their needs. To mention a few,
- The best platform: We have discussed everything in detail about choosing the right event management platform. Remember, if your platform is unreliable, using its technology would become arduous. Also, the virtual audience may feel secluded or missing out if the technology doesn’t work. The one platform you choose should integrate all the steps involved in the event. Ensure the opted platform is responsive with all features on all devices.
- A platform with ample engagement features: There is a difference between speaking and communicating. Let the speaker make it a two-way communication with the in-person and virtual attendees. Let also the two audiences interact among themselves. Your virtual attendees need more attention and thus include features like chat, polls, Q&A, and also virtual booths for a real 3D experience if possible. The more they are engaged, the more time they spend on your event.
Extend your support to the virtual audience: By now, you would have understood, it’s pretty challenging to keep the virtual attendees engaged throughout the session. It’s better to have a separate team that primarily focuses on the needs of your virtual audiences and ensure they don’t miss out on anything in the sessions. It would be of most help for people who are not tech-savvy and would equally encourage them to participate.
4.Connecting the Virtual and In-person attendees
Capturing the attention of virtual and in-person attendees is the biggest challenge of a hybrid event. Your content should translate well to both audiences. It is not possible to tailor to all the needs of these two attendees until you follow a few strategies.
- Never ignore your virtual audience: The worst part is making them stay out or giving them the feeling of being remote. The remote audience is of utmost importance in a hybrid event as they generally form the majority compared to in-person attendees.
- Choosing a Charismatic speaker: Choose a speaker whose presentation is more fun, animated, and attention-grasping. Let the speaker use relevant videos and illustrations to engage the virtual and in-person attendees interact. A good speaker needs to connect these two audiences for a successful hybrid event.
- Connect audiences: Just like the in-person attendees, the virtual attendees would want to network with the others. There can be attendees in person and online who share similar interests or work in similar industries. They could benefit from chatting, and you can also win a sponsorship if you are lucky enough. Thus, make them an introduction to interacting further.
Go visual: Your virtual attendees need to get a good view of the stage, including the host and the speaker. It’s an added advantage if they can see and address the crowd (in-person participants). The virtual attendees can be displayed on a projector screen to help the in-person attendees get acquainted with them.
The best post-event experience is creating the best memories for the participants and your company. A long-lasting impression would make your attendees come again for other events you organize. To understand the post-event experience, you need this data.
- Data and Metrics: The best part of a hybrid event is the data and insights it shows. You get to know the participation numbers and how they engaged and dropped out of the sessions. You also gain access to much other information that improves your future content.
- Improved ROI: Due to the reach and scalability of hybrid events, they offer an increased return on investment. More attendees translate into greater views for sponsorships and more sign-ups post events. You can also reduce the online costs and still reach a large audience.
- Repurpose your content: Instead of keeping your content exclusive, it’s better to reuse your digital content. You can share snippets of your videos on your social media pages and post them on your website. You can also send these programs to your participants for their reference.
Before sending the videos to the participants or repurposing them, it’s essential to add closed captions to the videos. Live captioning is done during the event, but they do not appear in post-produced videos. Also, live captions miss out on fast-spoken words. Instead, let us prepare transcripts, time code them and have a separate caption file that can be decoded into your video content.
According to the ADA, captions are mandatory for hard-of-hearing individuals (Americans with Disabilities Act) and essential for non-native English speakers. In post video captioning, native speakers at CaptioningStar listen to the words carefully and prepare closed captions that are over 99% accurate.
We readily offer captions to all types of virtual and hybrid events. We assure you the least turnaround time for post-video captioning. Contact us anytime, and we will get back to you within hours.