Hybrid event meeting ideas

10 Hybrid Event Ideas: Effectively Combining In Person and Virtual Events

Looking for hybrid event ideas for your next tradeshow or conference? Discover 10 different ways to blend in-person and digital events and wow audiences.
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September 1, 2022

What Are Hybrid Events?

In today’s ever changing work environment, gathering your audience both virtually and in-person can create challenges. Companies, in order to keep their employees engaged and interested are able to create a variety of hybrid events. Hybrid events are the future and attendees can join in whichever setting they are most comfortable in. These events don’t necessarily have to be a meeting or a round table discussion and can be used in conferences, seminars or social events! They are also incredibly easy to set up with a hybrid event platform

Hybrid event idea collaboration

What are the Benefits of Hosting Hybrid Events?

  1. Increased attendee engagement
  2. Opportunities for monetization
  3. Up-level your marketing and branding efforts

We’re going to walk you through some of our favorite hybrid event ideas for your next planning session.

Hybrid Events Ideas To Boost Attendee Engagement

1. Incorporate Game Breaks

To differentiate your hybrid event from the typical corporate 9-5 workflow, mix it up with the addition of games! By switching the structure of your events, your attendees will be kept on their toes, while also opening up room for conversation and spontaneous connections. Try adding in happy hours or midday game breaks where everyone can participate, which can build a sense of community both online and in person. It allows attendees to unwind, while still building valuable relationships. For even more fun, capitalize on themes for your next hybrid event. 

2. Encourage Networking

Part of the challenge with virtual events is the absence of networking and engagement. When everybody is in person, it is quite easy to exchange business cards. With Hubilo, your company now has the ability to host networking hybrid events, so your participants can interact with each other and still exchange contacts. Hybrid networking encourages meaningful connections that can further the lasting impression from attending your organization’s event. 

3. Use the Round-Robin Technique 

Conversation is a pivotal part of all events, and it provides value to all attendees long after the event has come to a close. While it is challenging to get everybody in the same room at the same time, hybrid technology makes hosting events quite simple. Using a Round-Robin technique is a great way for attendees to connect with each other both in person and virtually. A brief, 5-minute meeting between audiences can help attendees get to know each other on a personal and professional level. In terms of the round robin technique, using screens, even if people are not physically there, will make it feel like attendees are actually in the room. 

4. Schedule Breaks

As we all know, working remotely can be tough and present many challenges. Distractions can cause you to step away from your work at any given point of the day, which can apply to those attending events as well! During hybrid events, be mindful of the need for breaks, not only for those in person but also to avoid screen fatigue. Giving attendees evenly spread out breaks will allow them to clear their mind, regroup and refresh. Another thing to consider is that some of your attendees may be in different time zones. Their day may start or end at a different time, so pausing for food breaks is necessary. With the addition of small pauses throughout the day, your attendees will have a chance to take in what was said, absorb it, and then return to the event with a fresh and clear mind. 

5. Promote Inclusion with Breakout Rooms

A successful event is one where professionals connect, put their brains together and inspire success. Thanks to hybrid events, attendees can now meet together in a variety of different settings. Rather than everyone sitting in one room (theoretically) and having one person speak, breakout rooms are a fantastic way to boost engagement for all participants. Generally speaking, most people feel more comfortable connecting with others in smxaller settings, which is why a breakout room is a solid way to boost inclusion.

How to monetize with host sponsors

Ideas to Monetize Hybrid Events

6. Host Exhibitors & Sponsors

When hosting any events, changing up the routine of the normal lecture followed by a question and answer session can become mundane. In order to keep your attendees engaged and interested from all environments, reaching out to exhibitors is a great way to keep your events innovative. In hosting these hybrid event exhibitors, your company is able to create customizable packages for them to choose from ranging from subscriptions or sponsorships. Your company could also have package levels, leaving the exhibitors to make the choice. 

Exhibitor Packages May Include Things Like: 

  1. Q&A sessions
  2. Sponsoring the event bar, lounge or stage
  3. Social media takeovers
  4. Product demo videos
  5. Featured products in swag bags

Sponsors may also use a hybrid event platform to promote their company for monetization! By promoting themselves within the hybrid event, your attendees could receive things such as services, products and more. 

7. Sell Different Level of Ticket Packages

If your event, perhaps a conference or seminar, is going to be a multi-day event, selling tickets can be a great way to bring in revenue. Having different ticket packages for the attendees to purchase can even come with certain exclusive perks! A higher ticket package may include things like premium swag bags, live-streamed demos or even a personal meeting with the guest speaker. Using this ticket level technique will provide monetization for your company, as well as encourage sponsors. Audiences will be more inclined to attend your event, even if there is a price, because it would give them the option to not have to pay for travel if it is hybrid. 

8. Offer Monetary Prizes

As previously stated, we all experience challenges when it comes to hybrid events and keeping audiences engaged. From an attendee standpoint, it may become mundane, falling into the routine of attending many events or trainings. One way to differentiate your hybrid event from the rest, is to integrate a loyalty reward system. Within certain limits, returning attendees could enter a lottery system for incentives, such as a gift basket or a gift card. If your company wants to stay away from a lottery system, the incentive program could be based on nominations and voting! 

Ideas For An Event Loyalty Incentive Programs

  • Gift cards or cash prizes
  • Free ticket to next year’s event
  • Sponsor donated prizes
  • Company discounts

Providing incentive rewards for your events encourages your attendees to continue to come back for all of the future events you may be hosting. Using event analytics, you can explore how successful your strategy post-event was!

How to brainstorm hybrid event ideas

How to Use Hybrid Events Ideas for Marketing

9. Brand Event Merchandise

Although there are many types of events, they all have one thing in common- they are a gathering place. There is no better time to market your brand than when your audience is right in front of you! Selling or giving away merchandise at your hybrid event is a great way to boost brand awareness and it gives the attendees a memento to take home! Items to brand for marketing materials can include t-shirts, water bottles, keychains and reusable bags. 

10. Host Virtual Speakers 

At all events, keynote speakers and topics are often sought after. Many individuals will review the event schedule to see who is presenting and on what topics prior to deciding if they’d like to attend. The speakers you choose are a fantastic way to boost marketing for your company’s services or products. 

Ideas For Speakers That Can Boost Marketing

  • Have someone from your company present as an industry expert
  • Have your client attend to discuss their success with your services
  • Bring in a famous industry professional to draw in attendees
  • Host a sponsor to discuss their brand

Once you have chosen the right speakers for your hybrid event, placing the keynote speaker names on the marketing email blast will help to pique the interest of your attendees and further market your event.

Hybrid Events Are The Future

In the past two years, the world has been flipped upside down, but organizations have persevered and have adapted. Working from home became the new normal, and hosting previous in person events became a challenge. Through trial and error, hosting hybrid events has become the new way of life for all of us. Hybrid events help increase engagement, monetization and marketing that last long after the event has ended.

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