How Virtual and Hybrid Events Benefit Live Meetings

How Virtual and Hybrid Events Benefit Live Meetings

Written by Terre Grable

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June 4, 2020

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Hybrid Event Solutions and How They Benefit Live Meetings

While the pandemic of 2020 has caused significant distress with many businesses,  it also has created some growth opportunities.  The events industry is one example of a business field that has been impacted.  With the onset and aftermath of COVID-19, many live meetings were abruptly canceled.  Amidst the chaos, many event planners were left with two choices:  either cancel and lose money or postpone with the uncertainty of an unknown future.

Responding to the challenge, and choosing to pivot for however long this time is, many events managers and agencies have partnered together to create an exciting new product called a Hybrid Event.  This innovative option enables your event to take place regardless of extenuating circumstances.  A Hybrid program is where the elements of an in-person event and digital platform are merged in a unique way to meet the goals for your program.

How Virtual and Hybrid Events Benefit Live Meetings

1) Events Can Be Whatever You Need Them to Be

The great thing about Virtual and Hybrid Events is that there are limitless possibilities of what it can look like.  A common example of a virtual event is a simulcast webinar, whereby a professional organization hosts a live conference in one city and simultaneously broadcasts it to attendees across the country.  Another example of a hybrid program is called a time-shift.  A time-shift is when something that is recorded earlier is transmitted at a later time during one of your live meetings.  For example, a time-shift event is when the CEO of a company records a video to be played on the last day of a sales event.

Are you looking for something out of the ordinary to mesmerize and engage your audience? Sand animation is a magical way to tell an extraordinary story or inspiring guests. Using a combination of sand, music, and light, SandStory captures the hearts of audiences. From his studio in Atlanta, Joe Castillo creates both recorded and live-streamed Sand Art. Joe has been seen live in over 43 countries on all seven continents. He has done events for world leaders, performed on NBC, CBS, FOX, BBC, PBS, ESPN, Univision, and RCN Televisión and featured on America’s Got Talent, Q’Viva! The Chosen, X-Factor, and The Today Show.

Joe Castillo: Custom SandStory

These are just a couple of examples of how an online solution might look like when combined with a in person meeting.  Other ideas include two regional sales teams meeting in-person locally and then collaborating virtually.  Or a local nonprofit hosting a local fundraiser with a comedian and also offering an online silent auction.  Hybrid events are as flexible as your needs and event goals.

2) Virtual and Hybrid Events Insure Your Meeting Takes Place 

Need to book an in-person meeting, but feeling queasy about the future?  If apprehension is your concern, then a hybrid event is your solution.  Regardless of the extenuating circumstances, your live meetings will take place.  Whether there is an ice-storm or another resurgence of the coronavirus, your in-person can quickly transition to a online event using a virtual format.

Virtual events can be stressful and create a lot of unexpected problems. Our talent and staff are experienced and comfortable in this medium.   Our team can help you with technical issues and partner with you on how to make the best solution for your event should unforeseen circumstances arise.  Virtual and Hybrid Events minimize your risk of adverse circumstances because you are prepared.

3) Virtual Events Can Expand The Reach of Live Meetings

Event planners aim for a large audience. Businesses thrive when their brand is placed in front of many people. Sales teams gain a more significant profit when their message is communicated to an increased number of staff members. Online events help to achieve this goal.

Virtual events draw a larger crowd than a traditional live event. They also make it easy for attendees to share video clips with their friends expanding your reach even further through social sharing.

Whether your nonprofit is hosting a fundraiser or your organization is planning an annual conference, hybrid meetings can help you achieve your goals exponentially. Your audience reaches beyond those in attendance but also includes those that are not unable to attend in-person. Weather delays? No problem! Costly travel? No problem! Hybrid events resolve many of the challenges with in-person events.

4) Greater Sponsor Opportunities

Corporate sponsors are very interested in participating in live, virtual, and hybrid events as long as they have the ability to reach their audience effectively.

More attendees at your event mean a greater reach for your sponsors, making both virtual and Hybrid events an incredible sponsorship value. When you add the virtual component, sponsors can communicate one on one with virtual attendees.  

The digital world provides increased opportunities for sponsorship. Sponsor packages can be offered for live, virtual, or a combination of both. A virtual component adds enhanced data that provide reportable metrics. This data can help sponsors justify their expenditures for your event.

5) Return on Investment (ROI)

Tracking ROI at live events can be next to impossible because they have many moving pieces. The increased reach of a Hybrid program offers a higher return on investment. When you add a virtual component to your live event, it is only natural to increase reach and scalability. In a live event, it is next to impossible to track how people share information after the meeting. A virtual meeting solves this problem. More attendees and social shares translate into more significant views for sponsors resulting in a higher ROI.

6) In Person Meetings are Fun and So are Virtual Events! 

Virtual and Hybrid Events are fun and engaging.  Instead of listening to the same keynote speaker, why not utilize a comedian as an interactive segue between plenary sessions.  Improv comedy is an excellent example of how companies have been able to keep their staff captivated and creative.  Hybrid events facilitate a memorable event.  Marty Simpson is one example of how to implement a hybrid solution successfully.  Marty intentionally partners with business planners to identify the goals and accomplish them.  As a comedian, Marty has proven the virtual programs are here to stay and offer many benefits to event planners.

Virtual Comedy: Marty Simpson

Virtual magic shows are powerful when combined with a live audience.  Digital Deception merges interactive magic with the technology around us to create a unique stage presentation that forces audiences to re-examine what’s possible in today’s modern world. They are able to engage the live audience while interacting with the virtual attendees.  The original show is a collaboration between two of the country’s most exciting practitioners of magic: Doug McKenzie and Ryan Oakes. Doug has been profiled on CNN Tech, performed for royalty, and created original magic for countless televised specials. Ryan has performed at The White House, been profiled by Forbes, and appeared in almost every US state. Both Doug & Ryan bring their deep knowledge of illusion and their love of technology to the show.

Digital Deception – Interactive Blend of Magic and Technology

Have you considered telling your story using Sand Art?  SandStory is a unique way of storytelling that uses sand art, a light table, and music as a medium.  Joe Castillo is the keynote speaker, best-selling author, artist, storyteller and finalist from America’s Got Talent who has developed a new way of telling stories with his hands in the sand.   He has been seen live on all 7 continents, over 43 countries, and into 35 different languages.  He has performed for world leaders including President Carter, President Bush, President Clinton, Hillary Rodham Clinton, President Juan Manuel Santos, Pope Francis and King Abdullah.  He has performed on NBC, CBS, FOX, BBC, PBS, ESPN, Univision and RCN Televisión.  His work has been featured on America’s Got Talent, Q’Viva! The Chosen, X-Factor and The Today Show.  In both live keynote programs & virtual presentations— he will keep your audience engaged, inspired, and mesmerized and he tells a story unique to your organization.

Joe Castillo: Custom SandStory

7) Flexibility 

The main reason virtual events have become popular is convenience. Life is busy, and family schedules are challenging. By offering a flexible option to attend in person or online, your event becomes more attractive. People can choose how and where they attend a Hybrid event.

Need Help?

If your Hybrid meeting turns out to be a greater challenge than initially projected, this raisers the question – will you be able to take care of the details by yourself or do you need the help of a professional?

Did you know that we offer clients TECHNICAL PRODUCTION & STREAMING for Hybrid events? Full sound, lighting, staging, backdrops, cameras, graphic design, scripting and streaming!

A few expert services we can bring to your live/virtual event:

• Full Technical and Streaming Production
• Entertainment/Speaker Ideas/Talent Contracting & Coordination
• Streaming Producer (that’s with you every step of the way)
• Emcee/MC Contracting & Coordination
• Full Graphic and Video Content Creation and Execution
• Enhanced Options: Sponsor Gifts, Special Deliveries, Catered Meals, Ideas, Creation, Contracting and Logistics

The Grable Group is the worlds leading virtual booking agency.  We are experts in combining in person events with digital elements to create exciting impactful meetings.  Our website provides resources to help plan online programs.  Give us a call at 615 283 0039 to discuss your needs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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