Without a doubt, hybrid event form is on the rise. Hybrid events are the combination of virtual and in-person experiences. Due to restrictions in the last little bit, there has not yet been that many chances to organize hybrid events, so they are still looking for their form. Hybrid events were organized before the pandemic as well, but the game has changed now. We are still trying to figure out what the hybrid events will look like, what will work and what will not.
Defining event objectives
When you start to define your events objectives, spend some time first on considering what is the purpose of your event. The purpose of your event is the big-picture that should guide all your business decisions. Your objectives will create a roadmap to achieve your goals. Objectives are more specific than your goals and they should be narrow, measurable and tangible results you hope that your event will produce.
When choosing your event form, make sure that you plan for the different kinds of environments accordingly. No matter what kind of event you are planning, you need to start from the basics and manage your content production from start to finish.
Keys to a successful event experience:
Define the objectives properly
Define your audience
Define the purpose of your event
Define the core message of your event
Decide how and when to deliver content
Good flow of communication
Add something original
Engage the audience
Use technology (to achieve your goals)
Provide on-demand content and engagement beyond the onsite and online experience
Benefits of creating a hybrid event
Ability to access content that was not available before, due to travel or other restrictions
Greener as not all attendees will be onsite
Reaching a wider audience
Virtual reach on different media platforms by being able to repurpose content
Types of hybrid event forms:
Two events happening at the same time
The audience can watch the speakers through a video feed in real time and network with their fellow attendees or those onsite can connect with the viewers at home through their mobile devices or live audience interaction tools on the same platform.
Two components; live and virtual, but they are not occurring at the same time. The broadcast can be watched later on-demand for the virtual audience and the content will be live for the onsite audience.
There are multiple speakers in the same physical space but the audience is virtual.
Live studio audience hybrid
Similar to a TV broadcast. Stage with speakers and an audience at the studio, viewers at home watching virtually.
Physical event experience that still has the in-person interaction as the audience is able to watch the main event together with other people through a stream at a location that has a smaller setting. These are also called multi-city viewing parties or at-home watch parties, also familiar from the sports world.
No matter what form you choose, you need to make sure that you design your event format carefully, planning with a clear format from the beginning, so that both audiences and their attendance will support it. Remember to cater to your audiences specific needs whether you are doing a hybrid model, more or less technology, global or regional networking etc. Have a broadcast mindset when planning your event, thinking how the experience would feel like to each attendee. A proper hybrid event does require a bigger budget, more staff, good technology and event services, so make sure to think which parts will be important to guarantee your event success.
Internal and external events and what they are
There are two different types of events, internal and external events. There are some similarities and differences in both as well as when you plan them either onsite, offsite or both. Which one to choose from?
Types of Internal Events
Internal events can be company-wide meetings, different kinds of kickoffs or chapter meetings for different kinds of associations. These are the types of private events that you put together within the company itself. Unlike external events, internal events are not open to the general public.
Office and/or holiday parties
Incentive travel programs
Networking is in the centre of internal events and is a key factor in a company's growth and development, which in turn helps to gain recognition and increase sales and explore new lines of business. Regardless of the type of event chosen, company events are meetings that are very powerful and effective communication tools.
When planning internal events, you need to make sure that the event aligns with your corporate culture. Corporate culture is defined as the values shared by a group that persist even when group members change. It is important as it plays an important role for the employer brand, the image that your company reflects outside and the happiness of your employees.
Types of External Events
They are events that are held outside of your company. The purpose of external events is to enhance the company’s overall image and increase revenue. External events raise awareness of the company, its brand, its products and services and its vision. External events often use social media, advertising and different kinds of promotion to increase the event's visibility. The aim is to showcase the business in the best possible way. These events can be conferences, exhibitions, different sorts of product launches etc.
Business-to-Business (B2B) Events
The customer is usually a supplier, a business partner, a distributor or a business customer of yours. They are relationship-driven, meant to cultivate long-term business partnerships. Planning is extensive and detail-oriented. Usually require higher per person budgets. Not held that often.
Business-to-Consumer (B2C) Events
Open for the general public. The interest of the attendees is personal rather than professional. These sort of events build loyal customer bases. They are sales driven, rather than relationship driven. Are held more often. While per person budgets will be lower, added incentives (free products, company merchandise, giveaways, and coupons) are often factored in.
For both types of events, you need to:
Determine the concept, understand the goals and needs
Work within the budget
Draw up and sign contracts
Research and secure a venue (onsite) or platform (online)
Determine the technology required for the event and get it
Research and secure vendors and suppliers
Understand the marketing strategies, determine the most effective way to advertise and promote the event
Acquire staff or volunteers to help run the event
Secure and plan the food and beverages (onsite)
Establish the themes/concepts for the event according to your company brand and vision
Design the event
Put together schedules and timelines for the event
To sum it up, when planning your hybrid event, it is good to have separate hosts for onsite and online audiences as they need different content, there is a shorter attention span for online audiences and both have different types of needs and expectations for your event. Don’t try to create the same content for both. You also need to make sure that you know and understand your event objectives as well as who your event is aimed for. Will you be planning an internal or an external event and what is the main goal for your event?
Do you want to learn more about these subjects and what things to take into consideration for onsite and online events? Do you want to know more about what all is considered internal and external events and how to succeed in hosting them? Then download Liveto’s new guide about internal and external events and how to host them.