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As we all know, exclusive in-person-only events have followed the path of dodos, velociraptors and pyrotechnic baby gender reveal announcements (one can only hope) – as almost all events now incorporate a virtual element in order to deliver a hybrid experience for attendees.
There are many reasons why a hybrid event is more effective, including broadening your brand’s reach and inclusivity, improving audience engagement, securing the best speakers and sponsors due to a broader event reach, and finally better event engagement statistics and analytics.
86% of B2B organizations see positive ROI of hybrid events after 7 months*
So, as you explore your hybrid event, establishing objectives and strategies to make your event more engaging across audiences is the place to start.
What’s Different About Hybrid Event Production?
To create a fluid and seamless connection between your in-person audience and virtual, you need to give all attendees an equal experience, including interaction between the two audiences.
For example, the look, feel and user experience of the online environment must be consistent with the in-person experience, which comes down to the quality of your hybrid event platform and your audiovisual partners. All events are productions, but a hybrid event means you also need to include a seamless multi-media production too.
Ways to Up Your Hybrid Event Game
Your virtual attendees can be engaged at the same level as your in-person attendees by using interactive presentation software that allows responses to be gathered across both audiences simultaneously.
Further, choose engaging, unique experience ideas that ensure your virtual audience is part of the action. Prioritize activities that both attendee types can participate in, such as live polls and sponsored games or quizzes, which you can set up all through a single event app (more below). Or set up a treasure trail that takes them through various corresponding touchpoints.
And don’t forget to bring your virtual audience along for the fun elements that make events such a draw. For example:
The more fun the virtual audience is having, the more likely they are to share their experiences on social media and create buzz for your brand.
Transform Your Event into an “App”ening
An event app is also a must for both your in-person and virtual audience, allowing cross-audience engagement (questionnaires, polls, quizzes), as well as post-event content sharing/engagement – e.g., re-watching sessions and/or downloading details of their new connections.
The app becomes a mine of information, both for on-site and virtual guests – and there are dozens of off-the-shelf event apps like Spotme and Swapcard that you can customize for your specific needs.
Bottom Line – It’s All About the Experience
The hybrid event is not dependent on just the meticulously planned production experience for both the in-person and virtual audience. The technology you choose to provide interactivity and social engagement can leave a huge impression on attendees – one that can stay with them long after your event weekend has ended and leave them eagerly looking forward to next year.