Hybrid Conferences – they’re not as scary as you think.

Hybrid Conferences – they’re not as scary as you think.

As we continue to adjust to our ever-changing reality that is dramatically affecting how we live our lives and do business, it’s important to make time to consider what the ‘new normal’ might look like beyond lockdown. For us, that means working closely with our clients, existing and new, to future-proof the events industry, from corporate conferences and gala dinners to family celebrations and weddings. 

Over the past couple of months, a lot of companies have employed digital tools to continue communicating with their teams and customers, with some industry professionals even declaring the end of face-to-face meetings, and the permanent step towards exclusively digital experiences.

As much as we love digital solutions and the opportunities we’ve had to help businesses and organisations continue operating, we can’t help but think the digital-only approach isn’t the long-term solution – there is nothing quite like gathering delegates and guests together to celebrate, creating immersive experiences that engage all the senses and finding creative ways to present new information and ideas. 

We believe Hybrid Conferences actually provide the perfect long-term solution! Until recently, hybrid conferencing had only really been considered for multi-national conferences, where global speakers and delegates were unable to attend in person. The entire conference content would be streamed on a dedicated platform for delegates around the world to access, with speakers using video calling to participate in panels or deliver talks.

With social distancing measures limiting the safe capacity of event spaces and conference rooms for the foreseeable future, hybrid conferencing should be at the forefront of event organiser’s minds.

So how do hybrid conferences work?

Hybrid Conferences give you the best of both worlds. You can plan your conference or event as normal, choosing the perfect venue and inviting presenters to deliver talks and presentations along with as many delegates as your venue safely accommodates. 

Your event would then be live-streamed, via a chosen platform – including YouTube, social media and password-protected private platforms. Additional video and audio capabilities allow external guests and delegates to not only watch but to engage in live-time too, submitting questions and comments that can be answered live and incorporated into the event.

With the advancements in connectivity and technology, holding an event which is streamed to multiple locations has never been easier, more stable or more secure. The content captured can even be made available post-conference for consumption offline, allowing the content to be distributed even further. 

It’s a fantastic option when you have more guests and delegates than your venue can accommodate, and a great way to involve those who are unable to travel safely to the event in-person.

The Future

As social distancing guidelines start to be relaxed, and conference room capacity increases, we’re confident many clients will choose to revert back to their original way of hosting events. However, with the extensive benefits that digital solutions bring, we envisage many still incorporating some virtual elements into their planning – to allow for greater reach, engage with delegates who are transitioning to a more digital way of working and enhance their events with speakers from around the world. Planning in digital solutions also serves as a great contingency plan for any number of unforeseen circumstances or threats that can jeopardise even the most meticulously planned live events.

The good news is you don’t need to be a technology expert to host your hybrid meetings – we’re here to help! At AYRE Event Solutions we have extensive experience and knowledge in delivering conferences of all calibres, including in-person and virtual. Our team are available to work closely with you throughout the planning stages to advise the most appropriate solutions for your event. Contact our team today to see how we can help you set up your first hybrid event, whether you’re planning a corporate conference or a family wedding!