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Why you need to know how to run hybrid events

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The Covid-19 pandemic turned online meeting software and webinar events into the central way that many businesses connect with clients, investors or other interested parties. However, as we enter the “new normal,” a return to live events seems on the cards. Yet it is even more likely that we’ll see digital and traditional meetings merge together into what are known as “hybrid webinar events.” 

Hybrid webinar events certainly seem to be the way of the future when it comes to keeping businesses interconnected. The experts at Engage Webinars break down the modern hybrid event, and outline why it’s vital that you understand how to run one of these in the future.

What is a hybrid event?

Hybrid webinar events mix a live seminar with an online component. The live component is being recorded and broadcasted real-time to an online audience. 

In the past, the online audience would have less opportunities for engagement than their live audience counterparts. But new interactive additions allow even those who attend webinars remotely to make the most of the event. 

Those who attend webinars remotely can take part in the same surveys and polls that are made available to the live audience. In the same manner, the live audience can quickly answer polls and surveys online. 

Through archived webinars, there is a “third audience” that can be reached. By providing the option for downloaded webinars, a company can reach those who were unable or unwilling to attend in the first place.

Why hybrid events matter

The COVID-19 pandemic didn’t create the need for hybrid webinar events – it accelerated an existing development process

People enjoy attending live events where they can speak with one another directly. However, in an increasingly globalized world, it may not be possible for everyone to attend every single event. By running hybrid webinar events, you’ll drastically increase the reach of your webinars – doubly so when you take into account the visibility of your archived webinars. 

Hybrid webinars don’t just benefit the remote audience either. Good interactive webinar events will make the most of their online segment for the live audience too. Polls, quizzes, downloadable handouts, surveys and social media links will allow your in-person attendees to engage with you and with their own network, in real-time. 

How to host the best hybrid webinar events

The key to hosting the best hybrid webinar events is to make sure that you are keeping all members of that “triple audience” happy. Some factors are going to improve your webinar no matter what,such as getting multiple strong speakers. This will pique the interest of your audiences and compel them to attend.

It’s a good idea to hire teams to handle both the live and virtual segments. The last thing you want is to have your live team constantly pausing to follow up on questions from the online audience. By making sure you have a dedicated online moderation team ready to handle the online audience, you can give every attendee the full attention they deserve. 

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