Since the pandemic hit in 2020, the way in which largescale events take place has had to evolve dramatically. Last year, Impact became adept at pivoting on behalf of our clients, hosting virtual events for over 10,000 attendees. With unique content, eye-catching design, dynamic videos, entertainment, and interactive experiences, attendees remained actively engaged. They connected with speakers and with one another via their computer screens.

Now, nearly 18 months after the start of the pandemic, it is time for event production to pivot yet again. In fact, according to a recent Meeting Professionals International (MPI) study, 65% of respondents are starting to see favorable conditions for the return of in-person audiences. The same study shows the percentage of respondents who anticipate returning to in-person events are 46% in 2022 and 29% in 2023.

Hybrid Event Production

Questions Remain

With an inevitable return to some form of in-person events, there are still questions we must answer as event production teams plan for success:

  • What percent of the attendees are COVID-19 vaccinated?
  • Are there rules and guidelines in the event’s state, county, and venue for capacity and social distancing?
  • What are the responsibilities of the host and attendees?
  • Are there terms and conditions for attendance?
  • Are attendees local, domestic, or international?

But the most important question comes from the attendee perspective: how are you going to keep me safe? Each attendee must decide what is best for them, which is not a one size fits all response.

Whatever the format of your next event might be, the goal should always be the same: make it engaging, entertaining, and meaningful for attendees. Hybrid events tend to check the boxes for those who are ready to start attending events in person and for those who want to wait it out a bit longer, but who still wish to participate in an engaging and meaningful way.

As hybrid events have begun to take center stage, some surprising benefits have popped up. For instance, out-of-town attendees who might not be able to travel can now participate virtually. And technology can bring virtual and in person audiences together in new and exciting ways.