6 Ways to keep virtual and hybrid events fun and organized
No one needs a reminder that in the last 2 years, businesses have been forced to adapt how they interact with their team and customers. Restricted in-person contact wasn’t something anyone would have expected 5 years ago, but in 2023, it’s the new norm. While businesses have been able to pivot their services to a contactless manner, there is still a need to plan and organize company-wide events with fresh ideas that engage team members without feeling forced or unnatural.
From a more positive and progressive perspective, hybrid events combine elements of in-person and online events and have become increasingly popular in recent years due to the convenience and flexibility they offer. They allow for attendees that might otherwise be left out of the fun due to time, cost, or other complications. Team members can connect from the comfort of their homes or offices, which increases company-wide reach and makes every hybrid event an inclusive one.
Whether you are trying to orchestrate a large meeting, conference, networking event, or even a company-wide party there are a few key ideas to keep in mind when organizing a hybrid event that is fun and considered to be a success by all of the attendees.
- Plan ahead
Planning is key to any successful event, and virtual and hybrid events are no exception. Make sure to set clear goals for the event, determine the audience and format, and create a detailed schedule. This will help you stay on track and ensure that all necessary elements are in place.
- Engage your audience
One of the biggest challenges of virtual events is keeping attendees engaged. Without the ability to physically interact with others, it’s easy for attendees to become disengaged and start multitasking.
To combat this, consider using interactive elements such as polls, Q&A sessions, and breakout rooms. These tools allow attendees to actively participate in the event and keep them focused on the content.
You can also encourage social interaction by hosting networking sessions or virtual happy hours. This gives attendees a chance to connect and build relationships, even if they’re not in the same physical location.
Pro tip: Virtual Headshots
Virtual headshots are great for hybrid events because they allow attendees to have a professional and cohesive look, even if they are participating remotely. With virtual headshots, attendees can easily update their online profiles and bios with a high-quality, professional image.
Virtual headshots also help to create a sense of unity among attendees, even if they are not all in the same physical location. This is especially important for hybrid events, where some attendees may be participating in person while others are participating online.
In addition, virtual headshots are convenient for attendees because they can be taken from the comfort of their own home or office. This saves time and effort for attendees who may not have easy access to a professional photographer.
Overall, virtual headshots are a great way to create a professional and cohesive look for hybrid events and can help to create a sense of unity among attendees.
- Make it visually appealing
Since virtual events rely on video and audio, it’s important to make sure that your presentation is visually appealing. This includes using high-quality graphics, videos, and images to keep things interesting and engaging.
You should also consider using virtual backgrounds or branded graphics to create a cohesive look and feel for the event. This will help to create a professional atmosphere and give attendees a sense of unity, even if they’re not all in the same room.
Pro-tip: It’s also important to test your technology ahead of time to ensure that everything is working properly. This includes setting up virtual backgrounds, testing audio, and video quality, and familiarizing yourself with any software or tools you’ll be using.
- Use multiple channels to communicate
Virtual and hybrid events often involve attendees from different time zones and locations. To make sure everyone is on the same page, it’s important to use multiple channels to communicate.
Consider using email, social media, and messaging apps to keep attendees updated on schedule changes, announcements, and any other important information. This will ensure that everyone is aware of what’s going on and can stay connected throughout the event.
- Have a backup plan
Even with the best planning, things can go wrong. That’s why it’s important to have a backup plan in place in case of any technical issues or unexpected challenges.
Consider creating a contingency plan that includes backup technology and a plan for how to handle any issues that may arise. This will help to ensure that your event runs smoothly, even if something goes wrong.
- Follow up with attendees
After the event, it’s important to follow up with attendees to gather feedback and see what worked well and what could be improved upon for future events. You can do this through surveys, email, or social media.
Gathering feedback will help you to improve future events and ensure that they are engaging and enjoyable for attendees.
Virtual and hybrid events offer a unique opportunity for attendees to connect, learn, and engage from the comfort of their own homes. By following these tips and planning, you can ensure that your events are organized, engaging, and fun for all attendees.