There’s no denying that the nature of events has evolved, especially in the post-pandemic era. When COVID-19 hit, virtual events became the norm as in-person gatherings were restricted, and the event industry had to quickly leverage technology and find innovative ways to reimagine event experiences.
Today, as in-person events return, we’re seeing an evolution of such events – incorporating technology to engage a wider audience and create new ways of interacting with attendees.
Adapting Event Formats
Pre-pandemic, companies planned primarily physical events with attendees congregating in a designated location. However, the onset of the pandemic meant that the events industry was forced to pivot to virtual online events. Now, as things return to normal, event planners are faced with a crucial question: Do we go back to solely physical events, or continue with virtual events?
This question has given rise to an increasingly popular solution: hybrid events that blend in-person and virtual experiences to create a dynamic environment. In other words, events that meld physical components at a designated venue with virtual elements via online platforms.
Benefits of Hybrid Events
Blending In-Person and Virtual Experiences
Hybrid events can cater to professional audiences by maximising engagement and reach. The in-person component allows for face-to-face networking – fostering a sense of community and enabling more personal engagement. At the same time, the virtual component enables expanded reach and accessibility by allowing attendees from around the world to participate. Essentially, hybrid events transcend geographical limitations and promote inclusivity by facilitating connection to a broader audience – creating the best of both worlds!
Flexibility and Adaptability
Professional audiences have diverse expectations and preferences. Some have grown accustomed to experiencing – even enjoying – digital events from the comfort of their own homes, while others yearn for the personal interactions that virtual events cannot fully replicate. Hybrid events provide the flexibility to cater to these varying needs and preferences, accommodating professionals who prefer either in-person or virtual experiences.
Amplifying Engagement and Interaction
By leveraging technology, hybrid events can amplify engagement and interaction. Through dedicated event apps and networking platforms, attendees can connect and engage with each other, facilitating collaboration and knowledge sharing. Moreover, interactive features such as live Q&A sessions, polls, and gamification can enhance engagement and create a dynamic event atmosphere. By utilising technology, hybrid events provide opportunities for meaningful interactions between professionals – both in-person and virtually.
Leveraging on Technology for Seamless Hybrid Event Experiences
With hybrid events, technology plays a pivotal role in delivering cohesive and captivating experiences for attendees, regardless of their physical or virtual presence. Pairing innovative technology such as the Meeting Owl, a 360° conference camera, mic, and speaker, with a connected AV system, can help transform traditional setups and empowers in-person attendees with the ability to effortlessly engage with remote counterparts.
When leveraging technology for hybrid events, organisers need to prioritise the quality of event venues by evaluating their technical amenities. While Wi-Fi availability is common in most event spaces, it is crucial to ensure that the Wi-Fi connection is strong and offers sufficient bandwidth. This is particularly important when supporting high-tech touchpoints such as livestreaming. A robust Wi-Fi connection prevents connectivity issues, ensures smooth virtual interactions, and enhances the overall event experience for both in-person and remote attendees.
As the event industry navigates the future, hybrid events have emerged as a strategic choice for engaging professional audiences. By blending in-person and virtual experiences, event planners can create dynamic, inclusive, and memorable event environments. Also, leveraging technology – such as event management platforms and conference cameras – has become essential for streamlining operations and executing seamless hybrid events.
For those looking for a venue to host their next hybrid event, SPECTRUM Global offers a versatile event space equipped with a professional AV & IT setup and enterprise-grade WiFi. Last but not least, SPECTRUM Global’s dedicated event support team stands ready to support all your event planning and execution needs
Discover more about SPECTRUM and their event spaces here.