The pandemic has shaped events—today, events are a seamless blend of in-person and virtual experiences. Executing a successful hybrid event is challenging and requires extensive planning and strategy to get it right. Harnessing the power of hybrid event technology is crucial for businesses aiming to provide immersive experiences for attendees wherever they are in the world. If you do not have the in-house expertise to plan and execute a hybrid event, consider hiring an experienced event company in London to do the heavy lifting. However, if you decide to run the event yourself, you’ll need to select a suitable hybrid event platform. In this article, we will explore the best tools and platforms to use for a seamless hybrid event experience.
Essential Hybrid Event Platform Features
To give your attendees the best possible experience, you need to choose the right hybrid event platform. A suitable hybrid event platform should possess the following features:
First and foremost, the platform should be user-friendly. An intuitive platform is vital for attendees and event organisers, as it makes it easy for attendees to navigate through the sessions, network and engage with all the content available. For event organisers, a good hybrid event platform provides a hassle-free experience for setting up the event and managing it in real-time.
Data security is paramount. Ensure that the platform you choose is secure, complying with global data protection regulations. Select a platform that offers encrypted communications, access controls and the option to set up private sessions. The last thing you want is a data breach that releases sensitive information relating to your employees and the event attendees.
Consider choosing a hybrid event platform that offers customisation options to boost brand awareness. This will allow you to match the platform to your brand by changing colours, logos, layouts and more. Additionally, the platform should allow you to easily tailor the content to your target audience to improve the attendee experience and increase engagement.
The ideal hybrid event platform will offer integration capabilities, including CRM systems, marketing tools, social media platforms, payment gateways, project management tools and more. Integrating these vital tools into the event platform will allow you to manage the process in one place, making it easier to see if there are pending tasks yet to be completed. Plus, it allows for efficient data transfer and storage, better attendee engagement tracking and targeted marketing in the run-up to the event.
Analytics and reporting
Another essential feature of a good hybrid event platform is analytics and reporting tools. To measure the success of your event, you need access to these key insights. Real-time analytics allows you to understand if attendees were engaged, which sessions were the most popular, whether networking sessions were beneficial and much more. Post-event reporting allows you to have a clear overview of event performance against the KPIs you set during the planning phase, allowing you to refine your strategy for future hybrid events.
The Best Hybrid Event Platforms
There are dozens of hybrid event platforms to choose from, but which one is best for your specific requirements? Here are some of our top picks:
Hopin is one of the most popular hybrid event platforms available today and for good reason. The platform boasts a myriad of valuable features, including interactive breakout sessions, virtual exhibition booths and extensive analytics capabilities. But the platform’s biggest strength is its ability to create an engaging virtual experience that closely mirrors in-person events.
Eventcube is another prominent hybrid event management platform that offers advanced capabilities. The platform offers various useful features, including but not limited to ticketing, registration, breakout areas, networking rooms and the ability to create seamless experiences that run over multiple days. One of Event Cube’s best features is integration with other tools and platforms, including but not limited to Mailchimp, Stripe, Zendesk and Facebook.
SpotMe is a hybrid event tool that offers flexible solutions, including fast check-in, mobile and web capabilities, networking spaces, accessibility and language tools such as captioning and interpreting, Q&A capabilities and much more. Plus, the platform’s robust analytics provide you with a clear view of how your event is performing in real-time, allowing you to make changes backed by data.
Communique is a hybrid conferencing platform that specialises in creating highly immersive virtual environments and engaging in-person experiences for businesses. The platform lets you set up your own virtual environment and choose from virtual exhibitor booths, create agendas, create customisable landing pages for registration and ticketing purposes, and use real-time analytics to measure event performance. But that’s not all—you can also integrate the hybrid event platform with tools such as Salesforce and HubSpot.
Webex is an all-in-one event management platform that facilitates in-person, virtual and hybrid events. It offers a variety of valuable features, such as the ability to switch from in-person to virtual formats, detailed data about ticket sales, audience engagement and sponsorship, and branded registration tools to start the event on a high. Webex also has a mobile app where attendees can access content in-person or virtually, ensuring they’re always in the loop. The cherry on top is the emphasis on creating communities. Webex allows event organisers to craft branded communities where attendees can network and access exclusive content.
Adaptability is the key to success in the world of events management post-pandemic. Hybrid events have emerged as a powerful way for businesses to create connections and boost engagement with clients and customers. Businesses are turning to event management platforms to ensure hybrid events run smoothly, and there are plenty out there to choose from. But it’s important to note that there is no one-size-fits-all solution for hybrid events, as each organisation has its own specific requirements. Hybrid event platforms such as Hopin, Eventcube, SpotMe, Communique and Webex provide event organisers with a wide selection of valuable features to create engaging hybrid events that bring together in-person and virtual attendees.