Take pen to paper (or keys to the computer) and map out your online event early on in planning. Here we walk you through best practices and include some samples to get you started.
1. Simplifying Hybrid Events – Part One
Hybrid events blend in-person and virtual participation. But why?
You’re going to be hearing a lot about hybrid events (a mix of virtual and in-person participants) this year, make no bones about it. Let’s take some time to learn about how they work and what you need to know before you start planning.
Hybrid Events have been a challenging topic in the events industry from the jump, but they don’t have to be agonizing. Don’t get us wrong, they are complicated and require technical consideration and expertise to be done well. It’s not as simple as putting a laptop on the board room table, but you can do this and we can help. Let’s start with answers to the questions that you want to be asking when considering and your Hybrid Events program.
Why host a Hybrid Event?
Seriously ask the question: Why do you need to host a Hybrid Event?
Is it absolutely a requirement for your success, a nice to have or do you seek to impress VIPs with your brand and technical agility? All of these are valid reasons to move forward, but it helps to examine the questions it raises: Who is making the ask? Who are the stakeholders and do you have the Human Capital to pull this off; staff, volunteers, vendors? What’s your timeline to execution?
Look at some of the ways that adding a remote audience to an in-person event may create opportunities to benefit your organization and introduce new challenges.
- Accessibility and reach: Enhance your inclusivity for people with mobility and travel limitations. You’ll find live interpretation and closed caption is easily facilitated via virtual platforms – even for people in the room further reducing your in-room presence.
- Availability: Without a need to travel and with the potential to pre-record content, your guest list is potentially much more grand. This lends credibility and draw to your event.
- Realigned budgets: Where you may be trimming your budget in major ways in some areas, others may require more investment. You aren’t coming in with the objective of slashing spending. Guest accommodations budgets may realign to entertainment to have more, brief appearances from guests, for example.
- Two “classes” of participation: In-Person and Remote Attendees – How can you accommodate both with a reasonably equitable experience? Engagement, networking, food, entertainment, travel, lodging and other guest accommodations.
- Technical knowhow: Identify the platforms that you will use for registration and payment, engagement and messaging, content delivery and presentation. Assign knowledge leaders and experts that will help you to execute in each area.
- Human capital: Don’t underestimate the need for a human investment in your Hybrid Event. Start building your team early; identify your special guests, sponsors, vendors, staff and volunteers early in your planning and over-communicate with your teams to keep them engaged.
Are there any that you want to add to the list? Tell us about them in the comments and we’ll share our thoughts or reach out to schedule a discovery meeting with the experts you deserve today.
Watch for our next installment in this series where we’ll explore your reasons to move forward and your most crucial first steps in detail.
If you want to do more to amplify your online events, we’re here to help. Schedule a free consultation or reach out and let’s do something great together.