For the past few years, we are moving to the digital world. We get news on social media, order almost all things from e-commerce, and so on. And there are multiple reasons for this. First, it is much more convenient, especially in today’s busy life. Secondly, it gives us much more options to choose from. But even after these sweeping changes in our life, there are some things that we like to do in old-school ways. Some of these things are meeting with people. We still enjoy the touch and feel of physical interaction. And it is the same for our events. We love to go out with our family and friends. It doesn’t matter if it is a personal, social or business-related event.
Everyone thought that physical events will always remain in our ever-changing life. But last year, with the outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, this perception got changed. The pandemic forced the world to take strict measures like lockdowns and social distancing.
This forced people to move all their activities online, including the events. So people and organizations went for virtual events. And we saw all kinds of virtual events platforms. These events were virtual meetings, virtual conferences, virtual trade shows, virtual award shows, and many more.
But the biggest challenge was the lack of interaction level of that of a physical event. So, what was the solution? The answer is the Hybrid event. But the next question that comes to our mind is how to make the hybrid event as interactive as the physical event? Let’s look at the answer.
Tools and features for engaging the audience at the Hybrid event
Do you want to engage your attendees or like to know what they are thinking? Simple, conduct live polls. This will not only engage your attendees but also allow them to express their opinion.
Usually, a poll consists of 1 or 2 questions, in which the audience needs to select one of the most preferred options. So, in this way, you get to know the audience’s favorite option.
Just like polls, surveys are also an effective method to engage your audience. And to know their opinion. But unlike polling, in surveys, you don’t get the audience’s favorite option but, instead, get individuals’ views. However, you can determine your audience’s opinion by calculating individual’s replies. In comparison to polls, surveys have multiple questions, which gives us in-depth information about attendees’ preferences.
Gamification is a widely used technique to keep the audience busy. But what is Gamification? It is a technique of providing games at your event. For this, you can either integrate games into your platform or link online games with your platform. You can use Gamification depending upon your event’s schedule. If you are live-streaming your event, the audience can play games while waiting for the event to begin. Or you can provide an option to play games between different sessions. This will help the audience to relax before joining another session.
The leaderboard displays the score earned by the audience. But you must be wondering how a leaderboard can help engage the audience in a hybrid event? You can ask your audience to visit the different areas in your platform like a photo booth, exhibition halls, networking lounges, or sponsor booths to earn a score. Those who will tour the most places will be the winner. This will not only keep the audience interested but also encourage them to visit the sponsor’s booths. In other words, we can say one solution for two challenges.
A social wall displays the content – photos, videos, and posts uploaded by attendees on social media about the event. This method helps people to know more about the event. Also, it will help you to understand what is happening in the event. Along with this, you can also conduct competition using the social wall. You can ask your attendees to post about the event or sponsor’s booth using relevant hashtags on social media. The one with the most likes, shares, or comments will win exciting prizes. This is just one example, but you can do a lot of experiments with the social wall.
The emoticons might not sound that impactful but they are pretty valuable. But before discussing their importance, let’s first understand how you can use emoticons.
Emoticons can be used for replying during live sessions, live chats, and so on. Now let’s look at the importance of emoticons. First, emoticons improve the experience and feel of the event for the audience. Secondly, it gives a human touch in a virtual world. Attendees who are using emoticons get a sense of personalization. While the guests/speakers who receive a reply in emoticons feel appreciated and positive. So it not only makes attendees happy but also the guests/speakers.
Another great way to engage your audience is to keep them notified about the events. Push notification not only retains the hype around the event. But also prevents attendees from missing sessions for which they are anticipating. So you must be wondering how push notification works? The answer is, an attendee can enable notification for a session. This will work as a reminder. So, before the session begins, the attendee will get notified about that session.
Also, this feature will make attendees feel valuable. And he/she will not leave the event without attending that session. Even if they are thinking of going away from the event.
Networking is one the most influential factors for attendees to attend an event. In fact, the motivation behind attending any event for many people is networking. So, it works as the sole determinant of whether one will attend your event or not. It means you cannot ignore networking. Instead, you should actively try to help your attendees in networking.
Now that you know the power of networking, you must be thinking about what you can do for networking at your event. The answer is to use features and tools provided by the Hybrid event platform. These can be networking lounges, 2-way interaction, one-on-one communication facilitates networking. Whereas features like AI match-making helps in connecting with like-minded people hence, efficient networking.
Now that you know some of the tools and features for engaging attendees at the hybrid event. Tell us about your favorite tools and features. And which of these you are thinking of using in your next hybrid event?