For over a year we have been used to so many of the things we loved attending and going to being shut down, canceled, or postponed without further notice. It was one of the biggest changes for us in the past 10 years. The virus made it practically impossible for any major event to be held physically. That meant that we had to look to alternative solutions.
The solution was to hold events virtually and let people participate from home. Now that we are nearing a post-pandemic world and events are going to be allowed to be held physically again, what is their future going to be?
The Dawn of Hybrid Events
Before the pandemic, all events were held physically. During the pandemic, all events were held virtually. Now that we are on our way past the pandemic, we are seeing a fusion of these two approaches. The fusion is the latest on online conferences right now is called Hybrid Events. Hybrid events take the best of both the physical and virtual worlds.
Hybrid events are hosted from a real and physical venue for a present audience and then all presentations are being live-streamed to attendees at home or wherever they are situated. This has a variety of benefits and negatives.
Hybrid Events – Beneficial or Problematic?
The hybrid event is an interesting phenomenon. It is the next step in the evolution of events built on insights learned from the Covid-19 pandemic. What does the hybrid event do better than the plain physical one? It is much more convenient. It allows organizers to invite a lot more people than the venue they host it in can seat, attendees who live far away can participate from home instead of spending a fortune on traveling so and so on. You can also use hybrid events to be cost-effective by renting much smaller venues and counting on more people participating online instead, for example.
The areas in which the hybrid event can become a problematic lie in its reliance on technology. Technology can be a very fragile thing, and before you know it one of the live streams does not work or one of the microphones gets muted or somebody participating from home can not figure out how to connect or ask questions. It requires that the people attending are not technological dinosaurs. But thanks to the pandemic, technical literacy has been rising dramatically as everybody has had to rely on technology for over a year.