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Computers and Technology

Hybrid Trade Shows: Best Practices and Tools

The event landscape has broadened than ever before with the scale of virtual and Hybrid Trade Shows. Sooner than we realize, virtual events have become a part of our daily lifestyles. Unprecedented demand for virtual and hybrid events have been recorded in 2020 over the last 10 years. The event industry is one of the major entities that is severely affected by the sudden outbreak of a global pandemic. The futuristic approach came to life with the emergence of COVID-19. Technological innovations are evolving rapidly, thus enabling organizations to transit to virtual venues.

Digital technology has opened the gateway for events, fairs, and conferences to maximize their reach and attract global attendees seamlessly. Last year taught us, any live event can be translated into a virtual event. Whether you are planning a conference, trade show, job fair, or any other event it can be replicated in a virtual environment with the help of virtual event technology. However, resulting in 10X more attendance than in-person events. The enhanced reach and maximized attendance offer enormous opportunities for businesses to grow and flourish. Thus resulting in generating more qualified leads.

Today, as we walked ahead with time, hybrid events seem to be the future of the event world. Converting trade shows in a virtual hybrid event format is not as tedious as it sounds. Networking, booking appointments, showcasing a product offering, generating quality leads- can be done effectively with a hybrid trade show format. Having the right strategy and leveraging the right technology is the key to host a successful hybrid trade fair. A large percentage of organizations are saying that even when virtual events become physical again, they will require a hybrid approach.

In this article, we have shared a brief insight into hybrid trade shows. Generate qualified leads and amplify business revenues with your next hybrid trade show. All you need is to follow the corrective measures and techniques to see optimal results.

What is a hybrid trade show?

A hybrid trade show is a perfect amalgamation of physical as well as virtual trade shows. It is organized at an on-site venue paired with a virtual component. It enables a diverse set of virtual attendees to tune in from their remote locations. Whereas a small gathering of attendees attends a trade show by visiting a physical venue.

A comprehensive virtual hybrid event platform enables exhibitors to showcase their latest product offerings to a wider audience segment. It offers endless opportunities to attendees, exhibitors, and sponsors with some major merits.

Benefits of Hybrid Trade Shows

Apart from improved ROI and sponsorship opportunities, hybrid events offer enormous benefits. Here are some key benefits of hybrid trade shows:

Wider Reach & Increased Visibility

When compared to conventional trade fairs, hybrid trade shows have amplified registrations. Virtual Hybrid event platforms enable exhibitors to showcase their latest product offerings to a diverse set of attendees globally. It allows attendees to partake virtually from any corner of the world who cannot make it to the event location. However, it results in having enhanced reach and accessibility at reduced costs. An increase in attendance at the event simply means greater visibility, amplified leads, and business revenues.

Reduced Expenses

A hybrid event results in reducing the cost for both exhibitors as well as attendees. The cost of booking travel tickets for attendees who live at a distance gets escalated with hybrid trade shows. Attendees can simply access the event virtually from the comfort of their own homes. Whereas the need for booking a larger event venue, arranging food & drinks, accommodation, etc all get resolved considerably.

Boost Networking

Hybrid events enable virtual attendees to have free-flowing communications with other attendees, exhibitors, and virtual booth representatives. The live chat functionality offered by the platform enables them to interact in real-time thus fostering meaningful connections. With hybrid trade shows, attendees no longer have to navigate through the crowd to have interaction at the exhibitor booth. They can simply schedule the meeting at a virtual exhibit booth during or even after the event.

Capture More Qualified Leads

Virtual hybrid trade shows capture more leads when compared to in-person trade shows. It allows attendees to share their contact information directly with the exhibitors. However, it enhances the chance to get contacted by the exhibitor thus getting converted into leads.

Best Practices and Tools to Host a Virtual Hybrid Trade Show

Hosting a hybrid trade show requires effective planning, strategy, and leveraging the right event tech. Scout the right virtual event technology that translates your physical trade show experiences into a virtual space.

How to select the Right Technology?

Out of many options available in the marketplace, selecting the right virtual hybrid event platform is a key to success. Go with a platform that comprehends interactive as well as engaging features to keep attendees engaged and foster meaningful connections. While scouting for a hybrid virtual trade show platform service providers have a holistic approach. Go with a platform that offers real-time analytics reports, a collection of valuable data, and enables seamless networking in real-time. Curate a list of features you want in your virtual hybrid trade show and look for the service providers that best suit your needs.

Must-have features at your Virtual Hybrid Trade Shows

It’s a known fact to all, leveraging the right event technology is the step towards delivering a successful event. We have accumulated the must-have features in your virtual hybrid trade show to achieve maximum results out of it. Look for a platform that can accommodate all the features listed below:

  • A dedicated space for sponsors and exhibitors list

A virtual event platform must offer dedicated space for sponsor and exhibitor lists. It becomes easy for attendees to navigate through the event and have interaction at the exhibitor booth that holds their interest. Allocate the most prominent places to the preferred exhibitors and sponsors that hold the most value to you.

  • Customizable Virtual booth set up

The platform must enable exhibitors to set up customizable virtual booths that closely match the brand image. It helps in delivering real-life experiences to attendees. Customizable virtual booths facilitate exhibitors to display company details and have real-time interactions with interested attendees via live audio/video chats.

  • Seamless Networking

Live chat functionality is a must-have feature in a virtual hybrid event platform to deliver immersive event experiences. It enables attendees, exhibitors, sponsors to connect and network seamlessly in real-time. Whatsapp integration and business card exchange feature enables attendees to schedule appointments even after the event ends.

  • Drive Inbound Leads

Go with a platform that allows attendees to share their information instantly with the exhibitors. It helps exhibitors in garnering inbound leads.

  • Engagement Features

A platform that offers engagement features such as live polls, surveys, Q&A sessions, etc helps in boosting engagement levels at virtual hybrid trade shows.

  • Gamification

Integrating gamification techniques such as trivia, spin the wheel, crossword, contest, puzzles, etc. amid your virtual hybrid trade shows, spice up the entire event experiences for attendees.

How to make your virtual exhibit booths stand out?

Here are few tips to make your hybrid trade show stand out and achieve the desired results.

  • Right branding with customizable solutions
  • Have premium audio and video quality at your virtual exhibitor booth
  • Virtual collateral to share with attendees
  • Offer brilliant sponsorship opportunities
  • Reward attendees with virtual giveaways

Final word

With the change in dynamics, the event world has transformed completely. Hosting virtual hybrid events has become a part of the new normal. Undeniably, an increase in hybrid events and trade shows is anticipated to be foreseen in 2021 and beyond. Leveraging the right event technology and tools along with an effective strategy is a key to host successful virtual hybrid events.

Saanvi Patel

Saanvi is a creative designer and a blogger who writes about the latest technologies and digital marketing trends. Nowadays she is writing about the latest event technologies, IoT, virtual events platforms, and hybrid events technology that gain great engagement and are loved by the readers. She keeps herself updated with the latest technologies in the world of social media. She loves to read fiction and travel, to gain new experiences whenever she finds spare time.

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