The pandemic has had an undeniable impact on the meetings and events industry.
It was one of the few industries globally that incurred a complete halt to business and it will likely experience a slower return to “normal” as restrictions begin to ease.
There is no doubt that the way we meet has been changed dramatically and permanently. The event industry’s pivot to virtual meetings has seen many businesses, including Convene, transform in an effort to meet the new needs of customers and a remote workforce.
While the event industry was forced to adapt quickly to virtual experiences, the next major learning curve for event planners everywhere has been the hybrid event, which mixes in-person attendance with a virtual component.
In the short term, hybrid is a great stop-gap for reduced occupancies due to COVID-19, mixed attendee comfort levels, and ongoing travel restrictions. Looking ahead, we believe every event will be a hybrid event. But what exactly does a hybrid event look like? And what solution has Convene developed?
What we all know so far is that hybrid events are quite complex. With multiple technology platforms, a mix of hardware and software, and two simultaneous experiences to monitor, a hybrid event is exponentially more complex than a solely in-person or virtual-only event. The number of vendors and platforms involved in a hybrid event increases dramatically, and as a result, the potential risk of failure increases in parallel.
Despite the complexity of hybrid formats, we believe that they are an essential and exciting next step in the evolution of meetings. With the certainty of a long-term work-from-home culture, a more distributed workforce and increased comfort with virtual meetings, it is likely that every event post-COVID will have a hybrid component. Furthermore, by adding a virtual component to a physical event, planners can extend their audience reach far beyond the limits travel might allow. They can also welcome more casual participants looking to dip into a portion of the event only. Over time, we believe that hybrid will become an essential language and skillset for meeting planners and organizations everywhere.
At Convene, we have spent the last year working with our in-house technology experts, advisory teams, and customers to develop a hybrid product that simplifies the planning process and delivers a great experience for both in-person and remote participants. With our premium properties and virtual platform at your disposal, we’ve created a single ecosystem to deliver a best-in-class hybrid experience—with no third parties or external vendors. This all-in-one approach means no multi-vendor negotiations, risky vendor to vendor communication, or product and execution headaches.
With hybrid events, meeting planners can create studio quality events for a blended audience that extends the reach of their meetings and increases revenue while supporting significant engagement. As the light at the end of the tunnel draws near, we’re excited to see how hybrid meetings continue to flourish in a post-covid world. Whatever the future may hold, Convene is thrilled to be at the forefront of an exciting moment in the meetings and events industry, and we can’t wait to see what’s next.
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