How to Make Your Hybrid Event a Success
It’s happening! Superstar country singers like Brad Paisley and Jason Aldean and selling concert tickets! Conferences that were put on hold last year are meeting in person this year – but they are also making the event virtual for people who are still too skittish to travel.
Restream found that “91% of businesses plan to keep [live] streaming after COVID, and 81% say it will be a social media priority in 2021.”
As an event planner, if you’re planning hybrid events, you need to figure out how to make your events successful. And it’s not just about understanding that you have two audiences. You have to understand that you need to have two strategies for creating two experiences for those two audiences.
Different Types of Hybrid Events
When you’re planning your hybrid event, you need to consider and decide what type of hybrid event you’re going to have. There are several different types for you to choose from – and many other variations in between.
Simultaneous Events/Town Halls
These events are viewed as if the virtual attendees are literally sitting in the same room as all the in-person attendees. This gives the virtual attendees the “feel” as if they are actually sitting in the same room as the attendees.
Simultaneous Events + Virtual Content
The events for these two audiences may be completely different. The people that actually go to the event pick the sessions they want to attend in-person. But the at-home audience gets to watch the live coverage of whatever the event host wants them to see. For instance, perhaps the virtual attendees will see highlights from various presentations or events, only certain events will be made available to them (i.e. main stage speakers but not the speakers on the smaller stages, keynote speakers, workshops only, etc.) The event happens at the same time, but the emcee for the virtual participants is different from the emcee for the live, in-person audience.
Separate Physical and Virtual Events
These events are where you have the physical event at one time and the virtual event at a different time. You can have the same content and speakers, but this allows you to define two distinct journeys for these very two diverse audiences.
True Hybrid Events
Ted Talks have been doing true hybrid events since the very beginning. They have live audiences, but they also have the content available on livestream. It’s designed to be viewed live and virtually.
So when you’re planning your hybrid event, think about some of the various types of the hybrid events you can create. Which model is best for your upcoming event?
Tips for Hybrid Events
Many organizers are considering hybrid events to bring in-person engagement opportunities together with the safety and accessibility of virtual events. But trying out a new event type can also be daunting. Here are some tips to help you put on a successful event that satisfies both in-person audiences as well remote participants.
Have Dedicated Staff for Remote Attendees
If you want to make your remote attendees feel more comfortable, put together a team that will be available exclusively for them. That team is responsible for answering any questions from the virtual audience, collecting questions as they come in for the speakers and reminding speakers to engage with these remote attendees so they don’t feel ignored.
It’s important to think about time zones when planning a hybrid conference. To better accommodate viewers from around the world, you can make session videos available on-demand and control their release times, so that those in different countries will have access whenever it is most convenient for them.
If you want as many viewers as possible, be sure to consider everyone’s time zone needs.
It’s important to keep your event safe and compliant with regulations, so be sure you use an event app that allows for a COVID check-in questionnaire at the time of check-in. Different regions will have different COVID recommendations and regulations, so it is key to make sure you are aware of any specific requirements your location has.
Remind Speakers There Are TWO Audiences
Make sure that all attendees can view the sessions in high quality. Remind speakers that there are two audiences they are speaking to and that they should adjust accordingly. Another thing you might want to remind presenters is not to move out of the camera’s view because it may disrupt the viewers’ watching experience.
Deliver Exclusive Content to the Different Audiences
To tailor the experience for the two different audiences, you can offer exclusive content to both in-person attendees and virtual attendees. For instance, if you’re trying to encourage in-person attendees, you may want to offer them the opportunity to attend a session with an expert in the field – a session that virtual attendees don’t get the chance to see.
For virtual attendees, you can play sponsor videos or behind-the-scenes footage that makes them feel special.
Give The Remote Attendees A Way To Connect, Too
Unlike in-person attendees who are at the event – physically in the conference rooms, at the lunches and at happy hour – remote attendees are going to have distractions. Chances are they are at work or at home. If the presentations are going to be recorded so they can watch later, they may not even be online during the entire event.
Try to find ways to keep them online during your event! Create a way for them to interact with each other and the event. Create a message board or a chat feature for the virtual attendees — something to keep them connected and engaged will help them feel more connected to the event and make them want to stay for the entire show.
The Quality of the Live Stream Is Crucial
When it comes to the live stream for your hybrid event, don’t trust just anyone. Running a hybrid event is not for the faint of heart – or the inexperienced. You need a team of video production professionals who have the equipment needed to make your on-stage live event and the virtual part of your event come off flawlessly!
Be sure to look for a video production company that has experience in both live and virtual events. And not just some experience — but a lot of experience working on high-caliber events. You also want to find a video team that will come to you. Now this can be hard, but there are teams like ours that will make the trek out to your location to make your event a success!
Here are just a few things you need to pull off a top-of-the-line hybrid event (and things Wired Production Group just happens to have extensive experience with!)
Cutting-Edge AV Technology
You need to have a company that can bring up-to-date and state-of-the-art audio and video technology to deliver your audience a high-definition experience they’ll never forget. Your presenters and entertainment need to be highlighted on the big screen, on the live stage and online so your audience will be WOWED!
Live Sound For Any Size Event
Find a team with expertise and amazing live sound equipment to ensure that all your live sound events are perfect. Quality sound production isn’t just for concerts and live music events. Any event that requires using a microphone and speakers are live sound events and they deserve the best in quality! Professional sound technicians make sure that any event you have goes off without a hitch.
Because of Wired Production Group’s quality and commitment to excellence, we have been selected and are the premiere provider of live sound for some of the most prestigious events and clients. Politicians include Donald Trump, Barack Obama, Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, and Hillary Clinton. Corporations such as Collins Aerospace, Toyota, Transamerica and Marriott International, Inc. Music entertainers like Blues Traveler, Slipknot, Taylor Swift, Justin Moore, Kane Brown, Switchfoot, Trace Adkins, Journey and Sugarland. Trade shows such as the International Beauty Show in New York City, T.I.G.I, and Redken. Additionally, we have produced several fashion shows across the United States.
When designing a lighting system for your hybrid event, you need to talk with the video production company about your ideas and goals, and then work with the team to develop detailed plans. Next, the production team will plot out all the aspects of the truss design, rigging, cable and fixture placement. Business meetings, conferences, concerts and awards ceremonies will all benefit from unique light systems designed and implemented.
Roofing and Staging
You need a variety of roofing and staging options for any type of conference, trade show, concert, music festival or outdoor event. Make sure you find a video production company that has the capabilities to help in this area.
And Most Important of All – Video and Live Streaming!
Make sure you hire an experienced crew that specializes in coordinating live streams for any and all types of events — from public speeches in a small town to private corporate meetings for 10,000 employees across the United States to large live streaming world-wide events.
If you’re ready to take your event to the next level with hybrid events, Wired Production Group offers live streaming services, live webcasting services, webinar production and full-service live event production that will make your events extraordinary!
We provide full back-end support including audio mixing, camera/video switching, content playback, recording, lighting, staging and logistics. We have a team of experts in each of these areas, and all aspects of your event are produced by experienced professionals. Backup systems and redundancies ensure a successful in-person and online event for everyone.
Here are just a few benefits of Wired Production Group’s services:
– We can live stream your event via various social media platforms, like YouTube or Facebook, or we can send your event to your own API or streaming service account. The internet has no limits.
– Virtual attendees can enjoy your event, too! If there are people who want or need to see your event or presentations and are unable to travel, we create a memorable live event for them.
– Presenters can contribute from anywhere in the world! We offer a hybrid live stream/video conference service that allows presenters in multiple locations to contribute to an event.
– We are pros at setting up and managing your live, in-person event! Our team of event professionals can handle everything from lighting, staging, sound, video – you name it!
Can We Help Produce and Live Stream YOUR Hybrid Event?
Since our event and video production office is centrally located in the Midwest, our team can travel quickly and easily to wherever your event is at – nationwide! We have the trucks, equipment, and crew to make your live streaming, hybrid event or in-person event happen anywhere in the United States. Contact us today to find out how Wired Production Group can make your job easier when you plan your next event!