How to Enhance and Embrace Virtual and Hybrid Events

2020 was the year of the mad dash to embrace the digital world for conferences and events.

We all attended and hosted numerous meetings, webinars, and events.  I think it is true to say that most of us had a bit of zoom fatigue by the end of the year.  It certainly highlighted peoples’ poor broadband speeds.

But I think we all realised that digital when executed well has a place in the world of events.  Virtual and Live can work well alongside each other in your event schedule or indeed be blended together as a hybrid event.

As the sector starts to re-open, we know that not everyone will be able to attend your event in person, they may not feel comfortable, they may be from a country that still has restrictions.  With a hybrid event these delegates can still attend virtually.

Can a Virtual Event Make Money for You?

Initially we all rushed to pivot to virtual events, happy just to be able to keep in touch with each other and to be able to run some kind of events programme.  However, many events are run to make money; whether you charge the delegates to attend, sell goods and services at the conference or use the event to raise your profile with customers.  If we are to continue to use the digital world, we need to ensure that our events continue to work for us.  Free virtual events will need to start making money for us.  The main way to do this is to make your event stand out for all the right reasons.

We need to spend money on production for speakers and panel discussions; the same way that you would build a set or stage for a live event.  Include something a bit different to replace the gala dinner?  Include some entertainment and a digital goodie bag.  The beauty of virtual is that you can capture all the speakers for delegates to watch later.  You can include bonus material to encourage delegates to revisit your content after the conference is over.  You can even sell after conference access to keynote speeches.

Add Something Quirky

HotelRes has been working with a number of virtual entertainers who have been helping to add something a little different to the monthly team zoom meetings.  Everything from murder mysteries to cocktail making and magicians to celebrity speakers. You can even add a mindfulness room and run a yoga class! They would all add something a little different to your virtual conferences.

We have already helped some of our clients find studios, so have a comprehensive list of the venues that are already able to help.

If you want to find out a bit more about using a venue for your event broadcasts read our article:

Are Venues Ready to Live Stream?