Hybrid conference – a mix of two worlds
Perhaps you have never heard the word hybrid conference before, but you have most likely attended one over the last few years - either by attending physically or online. As we have hinted at already, a hybrid conference is defined as a type of conference that mixes online and offline. Therefore, a hybrid conference will have part of the participants and presenters physically present, gathered in a physical location, and part of the presenters and participants present via an online platform, typically in the form of a video call.
In other words, when you hold a hybrid conference you have both an online and an offline element. It is not either-or, but rather it is both-and. The hybrid genre is a more flexible way to hold conferences, enabling the participation of more people. Therefore, it is also a conference form that is being used more and more. Over the past few years, there is a greater tendency to combine our physical world with the digital world, and fewer people are questioning the benefits of combining the two.
Conference streaming with physical and digital participation
If you are not yet familiar with this conference form, you may have a hard time imagining how a hybrid conference is executed. Who gets to speak when, and how do you even plan engagement of the audience, when there is both a group participating physically, and a group of online participants involved?
Actually, it doesn’t have to be difficult or complicated to meet the needs of both online and offline participants. Just as with the purely physical conferences, the hybrid conferences are all about the presenter creating engagement among the audience. There are countless examples of how to bring this into play – both for the participants that are physically present in the room and for those who participate through an online connection. A frequent method used by presenters to engage the audience is asking questions or doing a poll, which all participants can answer or be part of via their smartphone or computer – this obviously depends on the conference setup.
Thus, a hybrid conference is not necessarily terribly different from a conference where the participation is 100% physical. It should be seen as an alternative that seeks to balance all the benefits we know from physical conferences with all the benefits we experience with virtual conferences.
Should I hold a hybrid or a virtual conference?
The question you may be asking yourself when you are faced with holding a conference that should encompass the online element is: Which of the two formats makes the most sense?
The virtual conference will work well for many types of companies, and it may be especially useful for companies that are largely used to everything happening online. But there will also be companies that find it harder to picture themselves in a 100% online setup and who appreciate being able to meet physically. For many, the opportunity to network with other professionals or colleagues is still a big incentive for participating in conferences.
If you are more inclined to the latter when considering your company, then a hybrid conference will probably be a great choice, combining the best of the physical world with the online universe. This way, you get a conference format that is still flexible and enables participation across national and international boundaries.
Make a plan for balancing online and offline
If you choose to hold a hybrid conference, we recommend determining what will happen in the conference room, and what will happen online. With the hybrid genre, you will have participants in both the chairs in front of you, as normal, and on the screen behind you. Obviously, both should have a cohesive experience and feel included in what is going on at the conference.
Fortunately, all that is needed to include everyone is good planning. You might want to include speaking time for the online participants and do the same for those participating physically. That way, both online and offline participants will have the opportunity to be active and feel like part of one unit sharing the same experience.
Hybrid conferences customized to the needs of your company
At Litemotions, we offer livestreaming for hybrid conferences for all types of companies. We are happy to customize a solution that fits your company precisely, so you can be sure that you can deliver livestreaming for your conference.
The option of creating solutions customized to your company means, of course, that we can set up a streaming solution that meets the needs of your company. For us, Vimeo is our platform of choice, but we also work with Facebook Live, LinkedIn, YouTube, Zoom, Skype, or Microsoft Teams, if that is the preference for your company.
Focus on quality stream for your hybrid conference
We don’t compromise on the quality of the conference experience. We realize the importance of both physical and online participants getting a great sound and picture experience. For this reason, we always deliver a professional setup for your conference with the option of highest-quality livestreaming to meet the needs of both offline and online participants.