When planning hybrid events, event marketers know that measuring ROI is essential, same as any other format. Unusual circumstances caused by the COVID-19 had forced the entire event industry to a standstill in 2019. There is no doubt that during this period, the community prevailed, evolved over time, and made some remarkable changes along the way.
Many people never considered the possibility of virtual or hybrid events at the beginning of 2020. Towards the end of the year, it was already clear to see that virtual events were now on everyone’s radar. According to a recent Post Covid-19 Event Outlook Report on how the industry responded to Covid-19, 93% of respondents (or organizers) plan to invest in virtual events moving forward.
Virtual events have opened up an avenue for increased reach and showed how resilient the events industry is. They have kept events going throughout the unfortunate pandemic. They will also become a huge part of hybrid events in 2021 and the foreseeable future.
Hybrid events offer increased return on investment in 2021, due mainly to their scalability and increased reach. Hybrid events offer increased attendance, translating into more excellent views for sponsors and more sign-ups after the event. You also gain lots of data to provide more accurate reporting on your performance.
For scalability, the technology needs to be set up once so that the process is easier to replicate at all your events. A virtual event platform doesn’t require any extra workforce for setting-up the venue. Besides, there is also the potential to reduce your live event while increasing your online presence. This will enable you to reduce onsite costs while still reaching a large audience and ultimately boosting your margin.
5 Ways Hybrid Events Increase Your ROI
After several months of lockdowns, increased safety, and social distancing measures, it is evident that the Covid-19 pandemic will significantly influence the way we plan and experience events for the near future and maybe, forever.
Fortunately, the recent increase in remote work and virtual partnership means that consumers are growing familiar with virtual/hybrid event platforms. They have come to recognize it as a practical alternative to physical events.
In-person events will undoubtedly come back, but the industry must do so gradually and safely. In this transition period, hybrid events can provide event marketers an exciting opportunity to benefit from the best of both in-person and virtual events.
Hybrid events are here to stay.
Hybrid events take place in both a physical location and a virtual environment. Attendees are allowed to choose the medium that works best for them and to switch between the two. While this concept is relatively new to the event industry, its popularity has increased exponentially, with no signs of slowing.
Fortunately, hybrid events offer a series of cost-saving benefits for both organizers and attendees. Let’s look at 5 ways in which hybrid events can increase your ROI in 2021:
One of the main benefits of hosting a hybrid event is the opportunity of unlocking a brand-new audience. Your event will become available to everyone on the global stage. There are countless benefits attached to increasing your reach and audience. They include greater brand awareness, sponsorship deals, and more potential customers.
While it is noteworthy to surmise that a hybrid event splits your audience in half between virtual attendees and the physically present ones, it creates a space for more interaction and connectivity if done right.
If you’ve attended an event or convention in the past three years, you’ve likely interacted with virtual leaderboards, live polling, and remote guests. We can seamlessly blend virtual and live audiences with these technologies, creating a fun and interactive experience with much higher attendance numbers.
There are countless ways to rack up your in-person event bill, from venue fees to costly travel expenses. With a limited audience in physical attendance, hybrid events save you thousands of dollars in venue costs, reduce planning hours and extra staff.
A recent survey from AladdinB2B that over 84% of organizations that held a virtual event in 2021 spent less money on virtual trade shows than physical events.
Attendee tracking systems to increase ROI
There is a general misconception that hosting most of your attendees virtually will make you lose valuable attendee insights. That is not true! Data that would otherwise be difficult to collect are more accessible in a virtual environment.
With some additional steps in the planning stage, each session can easily track:
- Who watched a presentation (consumed content)?
- What percentage of attendees watched the session (in-person versus digital?
- Which of the medium had more conversions (digital or face-to-face)? Which of them had the most renewed interest?
- Which sponsorship content resonated the most among participants?
Getting adequate attendee data from an event has many advantages for your sales and marketing teams. A good example is instant feedback. It allows event professionals to improve your event offering, thereby increasing engagement and overall attendee satisfaction.
Sponsor Engagement to grow Hybrid events ROI
Your investors/sponsors would like to know if they can actually make a good investment by partnering with you. Since most of your audience will rather engage with your sponsors on a virtual platform, you can track all their interactions with laser-targeted accuracy. It also results in an increase in the value of sponsorship deals for you and your clients.
Additionally, by adding virtual attendees, you are now open to sponsorships for your live and virtual environments. This can multiply your sponsorship gains if done correctly.
One of the main problems of sales teams during live events is the amount of time it takes to receive and follow-up with incoming leads. Data retrieval is done instantly in a virtual environment.
In addition to session feedback, you can gather information on attendees interested in learning more about your offerings. You can instantly capture a lead for your sales team by doing this and avoid the week-long turnover or missed connections.
A New Revenue Stream
Take full advantage of the online space to seek creative virtual event sponsorships that will increase your revenue and ROI of hybrid events. Suppose you’re streaming your event live or offering it on-demand. In that case, it’s an excellent opportunity to drive revenue via banner ads, ticketed content, sponsored segments, digital swag bags, and more.
Data to Report on
The qualitative nature of physical events makes it difficult to determine if you’ve successfully achieved your targets and goals. One of the major benefits of having a hybrid event that introduces a virtual element is that you know the number of people who attended, when they did, for how long, what they watched, and many other important details. This enables you to provide sponsors with the correct data to justify your ROI quickly. Importantly, it provides you with invaluable insights for improvement.