The pandemic that has struck the world poses problems for company owners and organisations all around the world in terms of adapting to changes in the way they work, collaborate, and create.
With fewer face-to-face contacts, businesspeople are among the most affected. As a result, hybrid conferences are now widely used and promoted in order to improve meeting efficiency.
In this essay, we will define a hybrid conference and show you how to use it to your advantage in event management and business.
What Is a Hybrid Conference?
A hybrid meeting is typically a meeting or event held in a physical venue where a section of the audience participates and another piece participates remotely. Audio and video conferencing technology enables this connection.
Hybrid meetings combine in-person and virtual aspects, hence the term “hybrid” does not refer to remote or virtual meetings. Consider bringing together all of the greatest features from both sides to create a supercharged meeting where knowledge can be shared and productivity is high.
Interactivity and participation have also increased dramatically. This is the point at which collaboration begins.
How Hybrid Conference is Different from the Traditional Conference
Participants in hybrid meetings can remotely attend live activities. The opportunity to attend remotely alleviates the pressure to attend in person if they are unable or unable to do so. Especially for C-level executives who need to be in two places at the same time, or freelancers in various regions of the world.
Unlike traditional meeting methods, adopting a hybrid meeting style provides for variable containers. Attendance increases and collaboration improves when more people are included, resulting in more engagement and decreased absenteeism.
When it comes to meetings, hybrid meetings are a far more cost-effective option. Combining face-to-face and virtual meetings allows you to obtain the best of both worlds while addressing the needs of a larger number of participants.
What Are the Requirements of a Hybrid Conference
Select the Best Platform
The most critical aspect of a hybrid conference is selecting the appropriate platform. You should choose a platform that can offer you the greatest technology and functionality for a hybrid event or conference.
Engagement is Essential
Maintaining participant involvement should be a top concern for you as an organiser. You would want your hybrid meeting to be a success and to achieve the same goal as the regular meeting.
Keep Things Fun
One method to ensure the success of your hybrid conference is to keep things light, to the point, and to discover common activities such as answering questions, completing challenges, engaging with colleagues, and visiting sponsors. Even during a hybrid event, attendees can communicate and collaborate on team-based activities in this manner.
Ensure All Attendees Feel Included
The most important aspect of planning a hybrid meeting is making all of your physical and virtual attendees feel welcome. As a result, it is critical to develop an agenda that includes both sides at the same time.
How to Organise a Hybrid Conference?
Make a Budget
Every event has a price tag attached to it. Virtual events gained popularity because they allowed businesses, brands, and event planners to save money. There is a lot more flexibility for event promotion without the costs of a real venue or hosting participants in person. When it comes to hybrid events, you must budget for both the in-person and virtual components.
Create a Detailed Agenda
To make your event a success, you must find a point of contact between these two groups. Begin by identifying what each group expects from their event experience.
Market the Event
As with any event, you want to pique people’s interest. This is especially true in the case of hybrid occurrences. The more excited people are, the more likely they are to interact with one another, and the more engaged your audience will feel overall.
Utilise Social Media
Before, during, and after your event, social media is a crucial tool. However, it can be used throughout your event to encourage both sides of your audience to interact with one other.
Examine the Results of Your Hybrid Event
Once the event is wrapped up, it’s time for you as the organiser to analyse into your event’s date. One of the benefits of using a hybrid event platform is that it simplifies the analytical process.
The Key Components of a Successful Hybrid Conference
There are 6 tips to help you manage hybrid meetings well, namely:
A good audio system in a meeting is critical, especially for meetings with distant participants. To avoid having bad audio, ensure that the conference space has a high-quality microphone that allows distant attendees to hear well.
Suppose the meeting or event is being held in a hotel or other temporary meeting spaces and just a few microphones are available. In that case, you may want to ask face-to-face participants to pass out hand-held microphones before speaking.
Research Technological Developments
Since the pandemic era, when the WFH system was adopted, the usage of video conference technology, which allows virtual meetings via computers and mobile phones, has increased. You should look at what technical advancements are available to make your team’s experience in a hybrid meeting more engaging and authentic.
Video conference platform vendors are investing substantially in order to improve the quality of hybrid meetings. Many new features are introduced by these providers to facilitate face-to-face communication between face-to-face participants and distant participants.
Consider the Viewpoint of a Remote Participant
When preparing a meeting, consider what remote participants see so that they may participate completely. Remote participants should be able to see the faces of face-to-face participants, shared presentations, shared physical documents, content created on whiteboards or flipcharts during meetings, and so on.
Put the Technology to Test
Test the audio-visual settings for both face-to-face and remote participants before the meeting begins. This is critical since damage to the audio or video might derail the meeting’s momentum and waste time correcting the damage.
You can arrange for a 10-15 minute one-on-one training session to familiarise remote participants with what they will see and hear during the meeting, as well as to go over any software they may be required to utilise.
Design Hybrid Conference for All Participants
Consider and review each activity, paying particular attention to how remote people will be involved, as well as what tools and approaches can be employed to maximise their connection with in-person participants, whether digital or otherwise.
If the close-up design requires face-to-face participants to place dots or post-its on a wall chart, a camera can be used to allow distant participants to see their peers’ comments before placing their own, exactly as if they were physically present.
For example, Google Meet Premium provides a Polls feature that enables real-time polling results in meetings. After the poll is done, the facilitator will then automatically receive an email with the results of the poll that can be used as a report containing the names and answers of each participant. This allows remote participants to be in the same position as face-to-face participants, rather than the show-of-hands method or relying on verbal feedback.
Managing a hybrid meeting is more complex than managing a meeting in which all participants attend in person or via a video conference platform. At the hybrid meeting, a close participant must be designated as the facilitator, who is responsible for driving and keeping the conversation on course.
This facilitator should be able to engage distant participants and ensure that their voices are heard and not interrupted. Although it cannot be denied that participants in face-to-face meetings will dominate the debate. To ensure that all opinions are heard, the facilitator may need to call participants in person or remotely at times.
The Benefits of Organising a Hybrid Conference
Health and safety are top priorities for all staff in the post-COVID office. A hybrid office reduces the amount of individuals physically present in the workplace, but a hybrid meeting is utilised for private meetings. Limiting the number of participants in a meeting room via a hybrid meeting solves the problem of social distancing, which is a key factor in minimising viral propagation.
Entering the office simply for a meeting or meeting wastes time and involves unnecessary travel. Hybrid meetings allow individuals to work from home while still participating in collaboration and meetings with coworkers. Hybrid meetings save time by eliminating travel time, which reduces the carbon footprint caused by driving.
Reach Your Target Audience with Engaging Hybrid Conference
Businesses are dealing with periods when striking a healthy balance between virtual and remote events is critical. As a result, hybrid conferences are launched and are now widely used to meet the particular needs of each organisation.
A hybrid conference can help save a lot of time and money for businesses and employees, as well as the cost of organising a regular meeting and the effort required to make it a success. However, for hybrid meetings, the first step in ensuring the event works effectively is to choose the correct technology and platform to fulfil your meeting goals.
If you’re still wondering how to organise your first hybrid conference, contact us at Evenesis and put your trust in us to create the finest event experience for your company needs.