Are you planning to host a hybrid event soon? Is it your first time hosting a hybrid conference? Or you are still confused about whether a hybrid conference is for you or not? Not many people are well-acknowledged about hybrid events at the moment hence, your confusions and assumptions are completely fine. 

In all the above-mentioned cases, it’s all about the virtual event platform you chose and the features it offered. One bad choice can ruin your entire event in no time. 

virtual biotech conference lobby

Talking about the recent developments regarding the coronavirus-caused COVID-19 pandemic, there is a long list of virtual event organizers who decided to explore a wide variety of ways to bring people together online. At the same time, not all the organizers are able to bring promising results. 

Not so clear about where to start? To help guide you through (and beyond) such tough situations, we’ve compiled some best practices (particularly features to integrate) for conducting a successful hybrid conference. Continue reading to learn some incredible features offered by vFairs for hybrid events. 

Hybrid Event Formats

Before we dive into the actual topic, let’s have a brief overview of four main hybrid event formats among which you can select anyone. Have a look below:

Format 1: In this type of format, speakers will be in the studio while the attendees will be watching it online.

Format 2: In this second format, the speakers can appear both online and on-ground. On the other hand, attendees will be enjoying the event online.

Format 3: In the third format, there is a limited number of speakers and attendees present on-ground. On the other hand, the rest of the speakers and attendees will be enjoying the event online.

Format 4: In this last format, all the speakers will be in the event arena while the attendees can join the event from all across the world.

Key Elements and Features of Hybrid Conferences

One of the most common and biggest misconceptions you may have heard is that all you need for a hybrid conference is a good virtual streaming provider. 

an image of a booth at the edlanta virtual education fair

The case is totally opposite when it comes to a successful hybrid event. A successful event requires the same elements as well as features just like an onsite event. When combined with a great virtual streaming provider, certain elements and features will make your hybrid event a memorable one. What you truly need is a great virtual-hybrid events platform.

vFairs is one of the top-rate platforms that provides all the essential elements and features to host the best hybrid conference. Below we have gathered some top features you must ensure to have in your hybrid event. 

Customization Features

Planners must look for a virtual events platform that provides as many customization features as possible, such as:

  1. Immersive and interactive webinar capabilities
  2. Branded customizable event website or landing page
  3. Customizable registration capabilities
  4. Branded customizable virtual lobbies and booths
  5. Customizable email templates

If attendees log onto the registration page of your hybrid conference and see the logo of virtual platforms, they might get super confused and decide to go back without registering. 

To avoid this, your virtual event provider must be able to integrate your company branding and messaging throughout. According to vFairs, doing so creates a consistent experience for new attendees. 

A few important questions to ask your virtual event platform includes:

  • Do you offer customization features? 
  • Can you tell us the extent of your customization features?
  • What about branding opportunities? Such as branded web rooms and branded event websites?

Networking & Engagement Features

When it comes to networking and engagement, similar to in-person events, you should be able to communicate with your attendees throughout the hybrid conference. 

It is crucial to keep them engaged during your hybrid events. To ensure this, below are some important questions gathered by vFairs to ask:

  • Does the organizer offer a chat or group chat feature?
  • Do you offer a Q&A feature?
  • Does the platform have a live polling feature?
  • What about having a feedback surveying feature?

At vFairs, you will get a BIG YES for all the above queries. We understand the importance of networking and engagement during a hybrid conference. 

Automation Features

It’s 2021, and automation features are a must-have for every event planner. Wondering why? This is because it’s all about how easy it is to meet and plan when it comes to the hybrid conference. 

Automation is essential as it helps planners save time and money. If you are someone who wishes to create a hybrid event quickly, automation is all you need. Keeping this in mind, you should opt for a virtual event platform like vFairs that offers a variety of automation features. 

During the evaluation process, ask them:

  • Can you show us your backend of virtual events platform functions?
  • At what grade your virtual event platform’s systems and processes are automated?
  • How long will it take to upload data (e.g. speaker info)? Can it all be automated?
  • How long will it take to create an event page? How automation will help with this?

Hybrid events providers should offer options for you to easily plug in the information that shows up on your virtual platform in real-time. Additionally, for more complex tasks, like setting up integrations, they should offer a dedicated support team. 

Monetization Features

Planners are always searching for new ways to monetize their events. When it comes to the hybrid conference, there are maximum options for monetizing the event. In addition to the sponsorship opportunities that come with physical events, there are even more that come with the virtual side of your hybrid event.

vFairs is one of the best virtual platforms that allows planners to offer:

  • Display advertisements with the help of their hybrid event. They can also have the ads link to “spaces” within their event, like virtual exhibit booths or sponsored webinars, or  they can link to sponsors landing pages.
  • Virtual exhibit booths. Use the “sponsorship” feature at its best to include a sponsorship space within the hybrid conference. Here, attendees can easily visit and learn more about the sponsors of the hybrid event. 
  • Create ideal hotspots that will directly link to sponsors or even other spaces integrated within your chosen virtual event platform.
  • Visibility within promo emails and on the event landing page. They can also offer special visibility through social media promotion.

Other Features to Use for a Successful Hybrid Conference

A few other features that can make your hybrid conference even better includes the following:

  • Live Broadcast options (vFairs preferred vendor Restream is the top choice here.) 
  • Mobile-friendly all the way
  • Pre-Recorded Content
  • Social Media Integration
  • Recorded Captured Content
  • Live Troubleshooting
  • Analytics and Reporting

For more information on the above features, check out the top features by vFairs to make your hybrid conference the best. 

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