The COVID-19 pandemic forced event planners to become digital, which increased the number of virtual and hybrid events. With the expanded audience and higher attendance rates, organizers are more than eager to take advantage of this chance to switch to events that are readily scalable. Conferences, expos, exhibitions, etc as well as internal events (business off-sites, sales kickoffs, new recruit onboarding sessions, etc.) are ready to move toward hybrid events in the future for event planners. If the audience has a computer and an internet connection, anyone can have online interaction from a distant area of the world. For both groups of people—those who want to go but are unable to and those who are unclear whether your event is worth their time—one can essentially decrease the entry barrier. As a result, you reach a much wider audience via broadcasting your event than was ever feasible in person.
One of the best outcomes of events switching to virtual or hybrid is the potential to boost attendance and audience reach, according to research from the State of the Event Industry. The virtual and in-person components must be efficiently streamlined in order to operate a hybrid event successfully. A successful plan always yields a positive event experience. All event professionals must now have a solid understanding of how to monetize their hybrid events due to the growing demand of hybrid events.
Here are the 7 successful setups for hybrid event strategy that can be helpful to organize hybrid events:
1. Provide Sponsorship Opportunities
A simple and effective approach to commercializing any event is through sponsorships. Any event which can be of any format such as virtual, physical, or hybrid, sponsors are eager to invest money if it has value for them. Event managers can provide ad space for businesses that are pertinent to your event. You can establish sponsored Q&A panels, virtual sponsored 3D spaces, or even various aspects of your presentation. Social networking platforms, revolving banner ads that support breakouts, and even gamification with sponsor messages may increase sponsor visibility. There are numerous methods to offer sponsorship options at your event, and the more inventive your strategy, the more you can increase sponsor visibility and attract advertisers to make money from your event.
2. Sell Premium Tickets
One of the simplest and most effective ways to generate income from your hybrid event is by selling premium tickets to select attendees. The ideal way to do this is to first provide free but limited admission to the event, then encourage people to purchase access to the entire event. Consider making different ticket bundles, each with a distinct price. You can use premium tickets like Easy Access, VIP Access, single-day, multi-day passes, group tickets, and more. Such a ticketing strategy can help your company increase revenue from your hybrid conference and collect attendee-specific data based on the ticket types selected. Utilizing this, you may send out individualized marketing materials and post-event promotional offers.
3. Vital or valuable data
Hybrid events offer useful information and data which might not be possible to obtain or measure in offline events. In addition to website views and social media posts, this information reflects the behavior and participation of participants. You can improve your service to your attendees and win their business by gathering this information. You can determine how your event performed for example in providing views to a particular sponsor ad or how many visitors attended an event stall by looking at how many people saw your posts or entries recorded in the virtual booth.
It helps you answer questions like:
- How many repeat audiences came back to your event?
- What clues did your event provide you on the products a lead is most likely to be interested in or their level of qualification?
- How much of your annual revenue can be directly or indirectly linked to your events or the touchpoints within them?
You will be able to tailor your sales and marketing strategy by utilizing information gathered about the characteristics and habits of your audience. This will ultimately assist you in turning attendance into paying clients and generating income.
4. Choose the appropriate hybrid and virtual event platform.
One of the vital decisions that can determine the success of your event is that you locate a virtual and hybrid event platform that can assist you in executing a flawless event experience for all of your attendees, whether they are there in person or digitally. The platform you choose will have to act as the link between listeners and speakers, listeners in various locations, and venues in various locations. Thus, the following is crucial:
I) Zero lag: A platform that eliminates the standard RTMP delay and enables you to provide your broadcast to your audience in the lowest latency possible.
ii) User-friendliness: No matter how many capabilities a platform claims to have, if it is difficult for you to utilize as an attendee or an organizer, it won't matter. Look for solutions that let you create a virtual venue seamless and user-friendly.
iii) Customizability: Effective branding, marketing, and audience interaction are made possible through customization—all of which are crucial for an event's success. The more adaptability a platform has in meeting your demands and requirements, the better. For example, organizing a virtual trade fair will obviously require different components than a virtual sales kickoff.
iv) Live engagement tools: With participation options like Chat, Q&A, Polls, Emoji, and Raise Hands that let attendees take part from anywhere, you can create a sense of belongingness in the community at your event. For instance, wiz365 is a virtual and hybrid event management platform, where virtual or hybrid attendees can experience huge events as well. In this approach, a single platform facilitates and records every encounter.
v) Networking capabilities: A platform that enables presenters and attendees to interact virtually in booths and network in real time.
vi) Analytics: Your platform should enable you to collect a wide range and depth of real-time data from attendees at your events who are present physically and virtually, such as daily attendance, audience interaction, and more.
5) Make an engagement plan that combines virtual & hybrid attendees together
Create your hybrid event engagement strategy around this principle, and search for opportunities to connect live and virtual attendees in ways that help them feel like they are participating in the same event. Introducing participants to even one additional person in advance can increase their excitement, comfort, and confidence about attending the event and meeting new people. It can also inspire them to participate more actively while the event is going on.
6) Utilize analytics to get pertinent insights more quickly
Hosting a hybrid event allows you to obtain precise real-time data that you would not otherwise get from a conventional in-person event, which is one of its biggest advantages. This implies that you may identify which events are drawing the greatest attention and participation from guests, as well as which are underperforming, using an event platform like wiz365.
7) Make the preparations for your participants
You must first determine how many participants will attend in person and virtually in order to prepare for them. Even if you don't know the precise figure, a broad approximation is preferable to having none at all. Design your event setup with your online audience in mind to ensure smooth management of the event. Consider all viewpoints as to how the audience online will witness the event.
These are some pointers one can keep in check while formulating a strategy to execute hybrid events, attention to detail is important as they help the event stand out and makes the audience spread more positive word-of-mouth publicity which is always a plus in gaining mass footfall.
Wiz365 is an intelligent, all-in-one virtual event platform with all the necessary features that will make the event engaging and memorable for the audience. If you are looking for more in-depth advice on virtual event planning or need support in organizing your next virtual event, don’t hesitate to contact us!