One of the most recognized benefits of hosting a hybrid conference is the opportunity to expand the audience. Hybrid conferences open in-person events to online participants. A perfect example is the annual Chic-fil-A leadercast conference, which uses host sites around the world to create what has become an epic leadership conference experience. Take a look at the other top advantages a hybrid conference offers to participants and the long-term benefits it brings the host organization.
Pre-event Collaboration and Community-building
Communities can be used for greater collaboration and to increase participant retention. Creating a community around an event fosters engagement and involves the audience in the content. A community can be used to build exposure of the speakers and their expertise. It can be used as a knowledge center to collect feedback and questions from conference attendees about the upcoming topics. The community can also serve as an information center featuring announcements, changes, and downloads of important materials.
Long-term benefits: Building a community as part of the hybrid conference positions the hosting organization as a valuable information source and trusted advisor.
Information Retention and Topic Expansion
Because of the online component featured with hybrid conferences, participants have easier access to important material. The online features may include a follow up Q&A session, polls, and surveys. Advanced conference planners include an information library to hosts the speaker slides and notes, and topic-related supplemental materials. The library can also be used for self-paced quizzes and even mini-courses related to the key topics and contribute to the participants’ learning. What may have been missed during the live presentations can also easily be viewed in the event recordings. Recordings can be made available online almost immediately after the presentation.
Long-term benefits: The organization is positioned as one that provides high-quality content and solutions.
When the in-person portion of the hybrid conference ends, the event is not over. The online component of the hybrid conference provides a channel for post-event collaboration and connection. There is an opportunity to continue with the networking that is expected from a conference. The space is available around the clock for members to connect and share.
Long-term benefits: A hybrid conference provides a channel for staying in contact with conference attendees and building strong professional relationships.
Advantages of Blending Learning
Blended learning was once thought of as an institutional approach to education. When used in the ways described above, a hybrid conference also follows a blended learning approach by delivering content through a mix of in-person instruction and digital learning. The result is high-quality dynamic content that offers a personalized learning experience.
Long-term benefits: Conference participants receive greater value and a better overall experience through hybrid conferences, which will add to year-over-year growth in attendance.