Over the past year and a half, the pandemic has left many event planners scratching their heads on how to balance the need for human connection with safety.
For many, the solution is hybrid events, which merge both in-person and virtual elements, allowing attendees to choose how they want to attend.
Here’s why hybrid events are growing in popularity and why you should consider making the switch yourself.
1) The Luxury Of Choice
Amid the novel coronavirus, people have different needs and comfort levels with in-person gatherings. By giving event goers the choice on how they attend, you are allowing them to choose what option best suits them.
In addition, consumers value choice. Giving them the option between in-person and digital lets them pick the option they value most. There are plenty of people who value physical interaction at events, while others would gain just as much value from the comfort of their home.
2) Make Everyone Happy
In-person events can be a tricky topic these days. If you choose between a strictly in-person or digital event, you may have some unhappy campers either way.
Please everyone by letting them choose the option that they feel most comfortable with.
3) Wider Reach
An event is nothing without its audience, and in most cases, the more the merrier. Capture the attention of people across the globe who would otherwise not be able to or not want to come to your event.
Simply put, as an audience member it is much easier and cheaper to fire up your computer than travel to an event, so they will be more likely to tune in.
For those who value in-person interaction, they still have that option, so you won’t lose a single potential audience member.
4) Increased Revenue
Sponsorship packages are often the #1 add-on for increasing event revenue. The more eyes you have on your event, the more attractive these packages become to your advertisers.
In addition, the more people attending, the more you receive in ticket sales and marketing data.
By growing your reach with a hybrid event solution, you can also grow your pocketbook.
5) Reduced Costs
Virtual attendees are significantly cheaper than in-person ones. Allowing people to go virtual will cut down on your physical headcount, saving you on print expenses, venue rental, catering costs, staffing, and more.
You can even pass some of these savings off to your virtual attendees. They pay less and you make more – everyone wins.
6) Automated & Enhanced Data
Collecting and measuring human data in an in-person setting can be challenging.
In the cloud, it’s a breeze. Automatically gather and analyze attendance, participation, and dropped sessions. Use this data to gather key insights on how to increase audience engagement at your next presentation.
7) Enhanced User Interaction
The digital element of hybrid events opens new opportunities for engagement and promotion. Those participating from their device can share, like, and comment.
Live polls and digital Q&As integrated with the physical audience are additional ways to create a connection with all attendees.
The pandemic has brought about a great deal of stress and worry in not just the events industry but every element of our lives. Provide safety and peace of mind for you and your guests with the option to attend the event in a risk-free environment.
9) More Flexibility For Attendees
Sickness, flight delays, and weather can all interfere with event goers’ ability to make the big event. Should unexpected circumstances stop them from being able to physically attend, they can always attend remotely.
You may even receive less grief on refund requests since a digital fallback option is offered.
10) Reduced Environmental Impact
Traditional events can leave a large carbon footprint. The single biggest impact is from travel, which accounts for about 90% of carbon emissions from events. By switching to half-virtual there will be a lot less travelling, emissions, and environmental impact.
Going hybrid can also cut back on waste production from catering and paper usage from print signage.
11) Ready For Anything
Local and federal regulations for in-person gatherings are ever changing. Be ready to transition your event style on a whims notice based on the latest developments and rules.
In addition, should adverse weather or other unexpected events get in the way, you can have peace of mind knowing that you can switch to virtual then too.
12) Built-in Marketing Collateral
As an event planner you know that getting lots of photos and video during your events is invaluable. Adding a digital stream to the mix gives you one more source of high-quality media to use as marketing material.
Save your event’s live stream and slice and dice them into clips to use on your website, social, and ads for years to come to maximize your marketing efforts.
The Bottom Line
Hybrid events are a win-win event solution. They let the audience choose which event style is best for them, and let the event planner boost their reach, improve their ROI, automate tasks, and have peace of mind. If you are considering making the switch, there is no better time than now.
Do you want to begin the transition to a hybrid event?
With features that are proven to engage online attendees, lead-generation capabilities that will optimize your pipeline, data analytics that provide real-time information to your team, and so much more, the platform from Second Stage gives you control over the hybrid event process. We’ll help you craft a memorable event that boosts the connection between company and consumer – contact us today to learn more about our solutions or speak with a representative