Why Hybrid Events Are Here To Stay
Updated: Mar 14
Over the past few years, hybrid events have gradually become more popular. For example, they were a great way to tackle COVID-19 restrictions by minimising the number of people present at an event and allowing people to join in from the comfort of their homes.
However, it's important that you do not view hybrid events as a passing trend but rather as a great way to elevate your next business event. After all, there's a reason why "34% of event organisers expect to invest more in hybrid events in the next few years."
What exactly is a hybrid event?
Hybrid events allow you to enjoy the 'best of both worlds' as an event organiser by hosting an event that is both virtual and in-person. For example, online viewers can log in to watch the same speeches in the venue in real-time. This widens your scope quite considerably.
Why Hybrid Events Are Here To Stay.
There are many reasons why Hybrid Events will only become more commonplace as we move into 2023.
Increased Audience Reach.
A low turnout is one of the biggest worries of planning an event. After all, not only could this impact your finances, but it could also reflect poorly on your brand. Furthermore, nobody wants to dedicate time to planning an event that nobody will see! This worry is likely elevated because in-person "event attendance stalled at 65% post-pandemic" and has yet to recover fully.
Hybrid events can eliminate attendance worries, giving you a much broader reach. That is, attendees can view or participate in your event from all corners of the world. This also widens your scope when it comes to hiring high-profile speakers, which could make it easier to sell tickets.
Simply put, the bigger the reach, the more successful your event will be, especially when "57% of attendees would like the option to attend a hybrid event."
Reduced Environmental Impact.
You're considerably reducing your carbon footprint by eliminating the need for speakers and attendees to travel to your event. This could work wonders if factored into your brand's marketing, given that "81% of people are likely to choose a brand with a positive approach to environmental sustainability" than those who do not try to 'go green.'
Improved Audience Interactions.
To host a successful event, there has to be some form of engagement between speakers and audience members. Some studies have shown that participants are more engaged during online events, as it's easier to ask questions or get involved in the conversation without standing in a crowded room. As a result, this can be a great way to spark some interesting and memorable discussions or generate networking opportunities for those present.
Joining an event digitally also provides plenty of ways to 'interact' from behind the screen. For example, they can comment on the live stream or add reactions. These opportunities will be helpful after the event, as you'll be able to see how engaged your audience is.
On a similar note, virtual events are often more accessible than in-person events. For example, somebody who is hard of hearing can view subtitles when watching the talk, so they are more involved in the conversation.
Improved Data Collection.
Data collection comes in handy when you're looking to assess just how successful your event was. For example, you should note how many attendees left early or how many comments you received on your posts. Hybrid events make it much easier to gather this crucial data when completing your post-even assessment.
For example, once an event has run its course, we can give you access to the following data:
How many attendees watched each session, and for how long.
What questions/comments were submitted with time accuracy, and during which talks?
Who visited which exhibitors.
How many people were attending a given moment during the online event?
Flexibility is another key benefit associated with hybrid event planning. For example, if a speaker's train is cancelled, they can join virtually instead of arriving late. This means that attendees are satisfied, having paid to meet somebody who will no longer be present.
Hybrid events also provide greater flexibility when choosing venues and locations or deciding upon the structure of your day/event. Furthermore, they also give the attendees more freedom. For example, they could digitally attend some of the talks before heading to the venue to meet exhibitors.
Various studies have shown that most event attendees prefer to attend hybrid events - and if you know your audience well, you can determine if this event style is right for them.
At DXM, we understand all these intricacies and will be able to guide you in choosing the most impactful format for your event. We can assist you through every stage of the process, from selecting speakers to providing access to the technology you need for your event to succeed.