Chances are, by now, you have heard of a Hybrid Event. It’s been a major buzzword in the event industry. In case this is a new term for you, this is a type of event that integrates both in-person and virtual components. Event hosts have recognized the amazing opportunity this provides them to expand their reach and include a wider variety of speakers and attendees. Attendees are loving this concept because they have the ability to attend events that they may not have otherwise had the opportunity to. Hybrid events allow hosts to market to a broader audience, host more participants (without increasing the venue space and food and beverage minimums), generate additional revenue in ticket sales, attract larger sponsors, gain greater control over costs and even strengthen attendee communities. Both in-person and virtual events have their benefits and drawbacks. Many people are excited for the return of in-person events, while others are more comfortable joining remotely. By catering to both parties, hybrid events ARE THE FUTURE of events.
Hosting a hybrid event adds a layer of complexity, and because it is unknown for so many, the added risks and potential mistakes can be high.
Keep reading to learn about the most common mistakes and how to avoid them:
Selecting the Wrong Platform
There is no shortage of event platforms to choose from and even though they seem similar, no two are the same and it can be challenging to navigate all the different technologies available.
Selecting the appropriate platform will determine the experience for your virtual attendees, and there are many features and components that you may wish to include. It is important that all the information flows in and out of one system -- avoid using different platforms for in-person and virtual attendees.
Hybrid platforms can be (and should be) incorporated as early as the registration process, through the event itself, and even after the event is over to provide you and the attendees with the tools to maintain momentum and ongoing connections.
We suggest choosing a platform that has everything you need from registration to analytics and will be the “go-to” location for all participants, before, during, and after the event.
Your hybrid platform should optimize your attendee experience and create cohesion between the in-person and virtual attendees and increase engagement. Make sure that your platform provides you with all of the tools to make lasting impressions and connections and has the capabilities to fuse the two audience segments together.
Consider consulting with an event company that has experience with many of the available platforms and can guide you in the right direction based on your needs and budget.
Underestimating your Internet Needs
This is one of the most common, and easily avoidable mistakes that we see people make. The internet plays a vital part in making any online event a success. It’s critical to have substantial dedicated bandwidth and a hard-wired connection. Yes, this will add to your budget, AND more importantly, will eliminate the risk for sub-par wi-fi and dropped signals. Imagine the embarrassment of having to refund all of your virtual attendees because you were unable to stream the content to them.
Catering to In-Person Attendees Only
Just as it’s crucial to have an in-person emcee, it’s also worth considering having a virt