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Are Hybrid Events A Long Term Strategy In A Pandemic World?

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In the duration and wake of the COVID-19 pandemic that has the world in its clutches, businesses and organisations were quick to cancel meetings in person, trade shows, town hall meetings and the like. There was a big focus on being responsible for one’s health and safety and this was seen in the work from home model employed by corporates around the world.

It did not mean that the above events ceased. They were carried out in virtual portals and virtual events, and even if the end of the pandemic is near, figures show that virtual events are here to stay. They have been proven scalable, cost-effective and safe, their basic parameters that decide the effectiveness of a strategy. And the new kid on the block is the hybrid event, a mix of the physical and the virtual.

If you are an attendee at a hybrid event, you have the choice of watching the program as it is, or if it is inconvenient, online events are there for you to stream and watch on your phone or computer. The best argument in favour of hybrid events is that it gives the company both benefits of a virtual as well as in-person event.

Covid And Post Covid World

We like to be optimistic and that is why I say that in the near future, there will be a lessening of sanctions due to COVID-19 like physical distancing and masks. In an ideal world, it should go away and companies should be tempted to go in for in-person events. In the past, this was a foolproof setup where you could buy insurance for events that included pandemics.

However, after the onset of COVID, pandemic insurance is so expensive and rare that few if any companies can avail of it. If the virus rears its head in the form of another mutation, in-person events will be at high risk and investors will risk losing everything they had put in the show.

After the pandemic abates, the question arises as to whether to continue with hybrid events or turn back to the traditional in-person mode of interaction. As far as opinion polls go, there is a sizeable portion of the populace that is in favour of hybrid events. With the best of both worlds, hybrid meetings and events, for me are here to stay.

Top Reasons Why Hybrid Events Are The Future

Increased Reach And Attendance

If you hold a hybrid event, there are innumerable people who can tune in. We are talking of massive numbers here. While the physical in-person space will get filled up, there is no limit as to how many people can join the event online. In this manner, you can increase your potential and reach the maximum number of people in the shortest time.

Event Cost Reduction

There are significant costs associated with holding in-person events and the cost is directly proportional to the number of attendees. With hybrid event servicesthere is a cap on the number of physical attendees, which allows you to factor in all the different costs of hosting the event. Besides this on the virtual side of the event, there is no dearth of viewers if the content is smart and interesting. There are a few basic costs to hybrid event solutions like the reliable hybrid event platform, locales, and the cameras and audio equipment. Even with these costs, the virtual part of the event will cost less than the in-person part. Even for the participants, hybrid webcasting services will be a real possibility with the only caveat being a stable and high-speed internet connection.

Higher Audience Engagement

When you have the virtual element playing out in a hybrid event, the audience is engaged to the core. They can choose to like, comment on, and have discussions on the event with other people who are watching. All it needs for you to participate in an event hosted by a hybrid event company is your phone, tab or laptop screen. Networking with like-minded individuals happens faster over the internet. You may even download an event app allowing you to navigate to different sections of the hybrid event.

More Sponsorships

If you are astute enough to recognise the worth of a hybrid event, you can use webcasting services to draw in sponsors. The sponsors have the possibility of reaching out to a curated audience with the maximum potential for conversion. You, on your part, will be happy to manage other interesting aspects of the virtual event management services that run the show for you. With more sponsors will come the tag of being more recognisable, which is the holy grail of all brands that are worth their weight in salt.

Environment Friendly

One of the bad boys in CO2 emission happens to be travelling. With a hybrid event, there are webcasting streaming services that will induce your audience to take part in the event through their devices instead of not being able to make it there physically due to various reasons. If you consider the reduced carbon footprint, everybody is happy.

Opportunities For Marketing

As soon as a marketer of hybrid events gets hold of AV hire, he is more or less set up to shoot for the virtual segment. The first shows will be in identifying the target audience. Due to accurate identification, the hybrid event manager can reach out to the right demographic to leverage marketing efforts in the desired direction. Marketers are skilled at parsing data and deriving the numbers necessary to drive a campaign. A hybrid event allows the marketer to launch new avenues of marketing according to feasibility and returns.

Conclusion

At the end of the day, hybrid events are flexible. This allows you to go online to attend a hybrid event instead of in-person, all you require is your phone. Hybrid events are profitable, sustainable as well as accessible, with three major points in their favour. The ongoing trend with hybrid events is not going anywhere anytime soon. If anything, they will be leaner and more functional as the days go by.

 

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