What is a Hybrid Event? Hybrid events are a combination of physical and virtual events. While hybrid events are being held in physical venues,...
Event marketing Trends | Predicting 70% of events go for hybrid in the post-pandemic
Virtual events have grown in popularity nowadays while physical exhibitions are gradually resuming with more control of the epidemic. EventX is foreseeing that hybrid is a new option for event organizers, combining the advantages of both virtual and physical synchronously to maximize the benefits of attendees and return on investment of exhibitors.
The global business model has been subverted by the pandemic through the past year. Most affecting exhibition events went online and transformed into virtual exhibitions to overcome the geographical limitations and increase customer base. However, virtual events cannot completely replace physical exhibitions. The Asia SaaS company, EventX, believes the hybrid is the latest trend for the industry, not to mention a new yet important marketing channel for those lead generation campaigns.
Research:About 70% of events are predicted to be held in hybrid after the pandemic
According to the EventMB industry research in the second quarter of this year, 67.5% of respondents think that exhibition events will be held in hybrid and only 11.6% of respondents think that only the virtual event will be maintained.
The survey was held from May to June this year with 401 respondents that 92% of the respondents worked as event planners, event managers, marketers, event strategists, and event technologists. The remaining 8% of them are suppliers.
24.2% of respondents indicate the major challenge for turning exhibitions events into virtual is audience participation, and 17.9% of them are concerning about social activities. While 38.3% of the respondents recognize the efficacy of online events in increasing attendance and reach.
One of the biggest obstacles for resuming physical events are the safety of attendees and stakeholders (31.6%), lockdowns and related restrictions on group sizes (23.0%), travel limitations (15.7%), and the lack of financial viability at lower venue capacity (8.6%).
Hybrid Event Expanded Overseas Customers with Only 10% Extra Cost
The above result reflects that most respondents think online events cannot completely replace the physical interaction of offline events. But there is no doubt that virtual elements are essential to complement offline events as there are restrictions and lockdowns in many countries. The merge of offline and online events can attract more online audiences and broaden the customer base.
The Co-founder and CEO of EventX, Sum Wong, noticed that various exhibitions of different industries had streamed online last year. As there are strong demands for holding physical exhibitions under the pandemic control measures, the events are moderately transforming into hybrid with both online and offline elements. In fact, The Hong Kong Trade Development Council has also stated that physical exhibitions will be held in mixed-mode of virtual and physical even if they are resumed in the future.
Based on the experiences of EventX, the additional cost for holding virtual exhibitions can be as low as 10% of physical exhibition expenses. Both virtual and physical exhibitions can be held synchronously with virtual meetings and live streaming features. Extra functions like advertising slots, discussion breakout rooms, and virtual booths can record attendees’ activities, Including browsing time and click history for better measurement and improvement on customer experience. At the same time, overseas customers can reduce the time and cost of transportation, attend the events and replay videos at any time and anywhere.
EventX has held over 20 thousand virtual events in over 135 countries, with more than 5 million attendees. Clients include Hong Kong Science Park, Investment Promotion Agency, Hong Kong Trade Development Council, and many local enterprises and colleges.