Hybrid meetings are common in the pandemic-stricken world as businesses are preparing to make a comeback to the physical workspace. Teams are connecting either virtually or in person, depending on the situation in their respective region all while following safety protocols. This is how work is being managed to keep the business up and running but, what about entertainment?
Businesses need to maintain a balance between work and entertainment in the virtual world similar to the pre-pandemic scenario. This not only helps eliminate monotony but also maintains sanity among individuals amid the pandemic. To this end, businesses need to employ hybrid event software that helps organize and manage events with both in-person and remote attendees.
In this buyers guide, we give an overview of hybrid event software, from what it is to the common features, benefits, and important factors to consider before buying.
Here's what we'll cover:
What is hybrid event software?
Hybrid event software is a cloud-based tool that helps businesses organize and manage events with both in-person and virtual audiences. The tool combines in-person events with virtual components to allow audiences to tune in and engage in the event activities from any location if they are unable to attend in person. This degree of flexibility paired with innovative technology helps deliver consistent event experiences to all the attendees, no matter their locations.
Hybrid event software is beneficial for businesses across the globe including, small and midsize companies, large corporations, and trade shows and event organizers.
Dashboard in Hopin Software (Source)
Common features of hybrid event software
||Print badges and wristbands for in-person attendees or create online badges for virtual attendees. Additionally, control access to attendees, hosts, and speakers. Manage everything from a single platform.
||Get access to data analytics to track the engagement and participation of the attendees in the event activities. Leverage the analysis to enhance engagement through a variety of tools.
||Manage virtual attendee queuing by issuing tickets to booths and kiosks at the event. Customers can scan the QR codes or enter a special code on their ticket to indicate their interest to explore.
||Stream live events in addition to playing recorded events and speaker sessions to deliver enhanced event experiences to remote attendees.
||Allow attendees to engage with the event by sharing their views and interacting with others in real-time on the chatbot.
What type of buyer are you?
- Corporate: Hybrid events have become a part of the corporate culture. All, small, midsize, and large corporations need to connect employees and clients to conduct events like seminars, conferences, webinars and more. To this end, corporations utilize hybrid events software that helps them organize events, and attract in-person and virtual audiences.
In addition to the event management solutions, the software helps corporates take more control over events like limiting the number of attendees or managing the remote-attendee queues. Features like meeting schedulers, breakout rooms, and real-time audience analytics with quick loading time and 100% mobile support are ideal solutions for this type of buyer.
- Event management company: These businesses organize numerous events of all kinds including, corporate meetings, exhibitions, trade shows, and more. This makes it essential for them to have a fully-featured hybrid event software that offers immersive solutions like VR technology and live-streaming.
Event management companies should look for a hybrid event platform that is flexible enough to fit the requirements of different kinds of events. This will allow them to offer an all-in-one collaboration solution to the clients. Additionally, such businesses can also explore the possibility of securing a customized hybrid event platform.
Benefits of hybrid event software
- Increased reach: While a physical event may have a limit on the number of attendees at the venue, there is no upper limit when it comes to virtual events. This is in addition to the convenience of online participation in case an attendee is not comfortable coming to the venue due to safety or personal reasons. This way, the event organizer ensures that the maximum number of attendees participate in the event.
- Greater engagement: Hybrid event software offers interactive features that allow attendees to participate and engage with the event activities. For example, there are virtual booths for attendees to enter while taking a look at a trade fair or exhibition. They can buy the tickets to the booth by making an online payment. The software ensures that both in-person and virtual attendees equally get involved in the event without the feeling of being left out.
- Access to insights: Hybrid event software allows organizers to get access to data on attendee engagement and participation. Organizers can capture actionable insights to analyze the effectiveness of the event. The data can also be utilized to enhance the event activities, and ensure quality offline and virtual experiences for future events.
- Budget management: Sometimes, it can be difficult to manage the budget for a huge event, especially for small and midsize businesses. There can also be uncertainty on meeting the target attendee count. However, such risks are mitigated with a hybrid event software. Organizing virtual events not just helps businesses save money by limiting physical event management, but also ensures maximum attendee count with interactive sessions.
Key considerations when selecting hybrid event software
- Integration feature: Data integration from systems and applications makes it convenient for event organizers to store and manage essential attendee information from a single platform. For example, corporations can sync the details of employees expected to attend the event, and trade show organizers can sync the details of clients and customers. This feature can be paired with the attendee management feature to ensure efficiency for organizers and deliver unique event experience to the attendees.
- Multi-language support: Businesses who interact with global customers, clients, and employees can utilize the multi-language support feature and ensure they cater to a diverse audience during events. The feature allows either real-time translation of the text or subtitles during videos, speaker sessions, and live-streaming.
- 360-degree customization: Some hybrid event software offer 360-degree customization for event organizers to infuse their brand theme with the virtual event venue. This way, organizers can accentuate their branding similar to a physical event that is full of brand banners and hoardings, which will enhance the brand presence.
Market trends to understand
Here are future trends in the hybrid event software market that you should be aware of:
- Better virtual event experiences with facial recognition: Facial recognition has gone beyond just being a security feature to keep sensitive data safe. With a hybrid event software powered by facial recognition technology, event organizers will be able to identify the emotional response of the remote attendees in addition to valuable insights into the engagement and participation.
- Personalize event planning with AI: Artificial intelligence (AI) has deeply penetrated the hybrid event software market. AI technology is constantly evolving and changing the way attendees participate in virtual events. What’s new is the personalization feature that allows attendees to indicate their interest. Based on the shared data, the software will recommend events to attend in addition to the ones already scheduled.
Note: The application selected in this guide is an example to show a feature in context and is not intended as an endorsement or recommendation. It has been taken from sources believed to be reliable at the time of publication.